The 21-Day Habit Theory

Have you heard of the 21-Day Habit Theory? It was formulated by plastic surgeon Dr. Maxwell Maltz in his 1971 book, Psycho-Cybernetics after he noticed that it took 21 days for amputees to stop feeling phantom sensations in their missing limbs. Further observations led Dr. Maltz to conclude that it takes 21 days to create a new habit.

This morning as I marked Day 34 on the Blood Sugar Program, I am praying that it has become a habit. A very good, life-changing habit—a healthy way to eat. Already I am thinking of good foods for snacks, quick lunches, and even picnics. The BSS program is amazingly simple: just eat “real” food, the foods our grandmothers cooked every day. The amazing part of it is that real foods are so satisfying that they remove the craving for processed, “damaged” foods. In previous diet plans, I have struggled with craving for a diet soda, but with BSS I have been drinking only water and don’t even think of sodas.

Yo-Yo is a No-No!

Over the years of yo-yo dieting, I’ve come to believe that consistency in daily eating habits is the key to success. But I couldn’t be consistent until I found a way to replace the diet sodas and processed foods with something better. The BSS program gives me that. How can I fail with this program! The foods are wonderful and nutritious and so varied, I’ll never be bored. I’m only at the beginning, so I haven’t added supplements to my diet; nor have I had any blood tests for cholesterol, Vitamin D, or thyroid to confirm the results. I have a checkup with my cardiac doctor in June.

I can foresee only two problems. My daily schedule can be so inconsistent, it might not be possible to be prepared for every meal. I need to have a backup plan. And I must exercise more. It’s so easy to procrastinate going to the gym after a long, tiring work day. Once I shed more pounds, maybe exercising—walking, gardening, dancing—will be more fun and something I want to do!

I’m hoping that BSS is so habit-forming that my body and my mind no longer crave all those bad, scary ‘food phantoms’ that have doomed every diet program I’ve tried.

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