Seems like everywhere you turn, there's a plan for losing weight.
This week I have received over a dozen unsolicited emails telling me to log onto sites that will tell me how well-known stars have lost weight and how I can too.
I don't know how they got my email address but it is bugging me, no end.
We get diet stories and advice in almost every woman's magazine. And on television commercials too. We hear success stories from Jenny Craig and Weight Watchers, too.
Advice is conflicting.
We are told to eat all we want and still lose pounds. We are told dark chocolate is actually good for us. We are told by doctors we must lose weight for health reasons.
We are told to stop eating pizza and fast foods. We are told that too many soft drinks are not good for us. Water is. Sometimes we hear that coffee is not good for us; then we hear that it is.
The truth is we are addicted to over-consumption.
I was talking to a stranger the other night at a social gathering and she said she has gained 20 pounds in the last six weeks.
She explained she had just gotten back from a 12-day Mediterranean cruise and had overeaten. She touched her bulging midsection and said, "I've got to get rid of this. I'm miserable."
Today I've been reading a book that has diet guidelines.
It says the contemporary American diet is too full of fat, cholesterol, salt, sugar and calories.
It is a myth that we should eat lots of red meat.
Neither should we eat and drink lots of dairy products.
It is wrong to start each morning with a high protein breakfast, such as bacon, sausage, ham and eggs, biscuits, pancakes.
And gaining weight is not a natural occurrence as you get older.
It happens because Americans eat too many calories and don't exercise enough.
We eat too much, too often, and eat high calorie foods.
We need to reduce the intake of animal fat and cholesterol. And reduce the intake of butterfat and salt and refined sugar.
I was surprised to read that Cheerios have only 2.2 percent sugar and shredded wheat has only 1.0. Grape Nut Flakes are also low in sugar.
Cereals high in sugar content are Honeycomb, Fruit Loops, Cinnamon Crunch, and Pink Panther.
Sugar Smacks has 61.3 percent of sugar, a very high content. But so do many other cereals.
It pays to read food labels.
But be aware that sugar is often added to processed foods and beverages.
Too much salt is a culprit, too.
There is a clear link between high blood pressure and a high salt diet. Remove the salt shaker from the table.
I have found many canned soups are high in sodium but there are low sodium soups on the market.
Really, most overweight people know what they must do to lose weight and become healthier.
Tips are to forego that second helping.
Eat fresh fruits and vegetables.
Drink alcohol in moderation.
Avoid cake and ice cream, candy, soft drinks, potato chips.
It isn't so much about dieting as it is changing habits.
It's a new way of eating.