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The Perfection Trap

I was talking to my cousin the other day. He teaches English and leads the marching band at a high school in Irvine, CA. He said people in that area want everything to be perfect, and there is a lot of pressure to make everything perfect in thier lives.

This means their home, their apperance, their marriage, their career, and everything else has to be perfect. Hey, no presure!

One of the hallmarks of a disordered eater is perfectionism. People with perfectionist tendencies tend to develop eating disorders more than people without those tendencies.

Chasing perfectionism is a sure way to make sure that you are miserable in your life. You will never reach perfection, and you can try all you want but you will have to deal with imperfections.

When I started my first diet, or when I altered my diet when I was 20-years-old, I had this dream of eating a "perfect diet." I had to have just the right amount of macros, the right amount of protein, and I had to eat at the right time every day.


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Cravings are not your problem

One of the worst enemies of weight loss and fitness is cravings. They're the scourge of everyone trying to lose weight and to eat less.

We all get cravings. I don't know anybody who doesn't. Even "perfect" people who say they never get hungry get cravings. It's part of the human experience.

Even post-recovery, I'm still getting cravings every day for stuff. Some days I get cravings for burritos, then ice cream the next day, then moist chocolate chip cookies the next.

Recovery doesn't mean you don't get cravings. You can't get rid of them.

But here's the truth about cravings: they can't actually do anything.

The way the brain makes you do things you don't want to do is by making you feel anxious, deprived, or fearful. Cravings are all emotional.

One of the best ways to deal with cravings is to confront it head on. That's what I teach in my YouTube videos (channel Kevin Burciaga) and as part of my program.

Avoiding cravings, or worse, caving into them, is the surest way to make sure...

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The most important thing in recovery

When I look back on my recovery from eating disorders, I ask myself what the most important thing was for me.

Was it my diet? Was it more protein, less protein? Was it eating less junk food? Was it eating out less? Was it more willpower? Was it more self-discipline? Was it less free time to engage in those activities. Was it more commitment? 

I think the biggest thing was taking today seriously. 

One thing I talk about in my free video (oh, I'm sorry, I meant "masterclass." That's the new cool word to use in the coaching world today. I guess "training" is too boring) is the importance of taking today seriously.

What I mean is that you should realize that you don't have a lot of time. You could die tomorrow. I know that sounds scary, but it's true. My former neighbor in Virginia died of brain cancer at age 36. She left behind a husband and two kids, not to mention her brother and parents. 36. That's not much older than me!

This doesn't mean you will overcome eating disorders,...

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Common weight loss mistakes

My latest YouTube video this week is about common weight loss mistakes. 

Most of the stuff I hear is like, "you're eating too much at night," or "you're eating but you're really thirsty," "you're eating too much sugar" or "you're eating out too much."

These might help, but I think it's cognitive biases that sabotage weight loss (or any other goal) more than anything.

I'm not a proponent at all of rapid weight loss. I think it's a bad idea, it leads to eating disorders more often than not, and it creates feelings of failure. It's a great way to sell a lot of crap to people, but it leaves them less healthy than before. 

If you want to know what the most common mistakes are, click here:

I bet you're making at least one of those mistakes. I made every single one of them, but even one of those mistakes can derail your efforts. 

If you're making these mistakes, then click here: and let's fix it. 


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Your metabolism is just fine

I had a conversation with somebody I know while on vacation last week. She complained about having a "slow metabolism."

If I've ever heard an excuse to not lose weight, fix bad eating habits, and get into shape, this is it! I've heard this one so many times. 

The fact is, she doesn't know what her metabolic rate is. She's never had it tested. It's just accepting what is. 

Now, she doesn't really need to lose weight. She probably drinks too many beers, but that's a tradeoff she's willing to make. We all make tradeoffs. Every time you have dessert or walk into the sun you're making a tradeoff. The fact is, nobody makes health their number 1 priority all the time. I'm sure Jack LeLane cheated a few times.

Not too long ago, there was talk that obese people had slower metabolisms and that they didn't eat more than leaner people. They had some "metabolic disorder." 

The problem is, this was based on self-reported intakes. What do we know about people? They always underestimate...

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Be Skeptical

I had a friend a few years ago who would change his entire behavior and his entire protocol if he heard one thing, one time, from one source. 

Now, what is the logical and rational thing to do?

As a clinician, I’m bombarded with new information all the time. 

I have to evaluate the quality of the research and compare it to other research.

I can’t accept one article, believe it with absolute conviction, and change my entire practice based on that one article. That would be silly.

But with this friend I had, he would read something once in a magazine and that was it. He would change his routine and the way he ate based on one article.

I can’t say I was any different. I was easily swayed at an earlier time in my life. One article is all it took to change my entire routine. I would see an exercise one time and say, “that’s it. I’m going to start doing that.” Or I read in one magazine that I needed to eat 30 minutes after each workout, and I...

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You can't be healthy at any size

 was watching an interview with a former Biggest Loser contestant who was talking about his time on the show.

He was isolated from the world, had no access to Internet or TV. All he had to every day was exercise 12-14 hours each day so he could lose as much as weight as he could to win the competition. 

He was 500 pounds before the show started, got down to 270, and then rebounded to 370 in a matter of months eating just 2000 calories a day. 

Now, I’ll give him benefit of the doubt, but I find it hard to believe the he gained that back in just a few months eating 2,000 calories a day. That’s quite a rebound!

But I was in an airport the other day and I saw a man who was at least 400 pounds. He could barely move. 

Earlier in my life, I would have said, “get it together, dude.”

Now I show empathy. Who knows what’s happening there. Maybe a diet that trigged an eating disorder. Maybe medications. Maybe genetics. I don’t know. It...

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How to know you have the ideal diet

After years of experimenting with various diets, tweaking things here and there, trying different regimens, and spending too many good hour of my life chasing the ideal diet, I finally asked myself

“how do I know my diet is actually working for me?”

What we do know is that standard American diet of cheap carbs, fast food, eating out, fried foods, and just excess in general, is that it leads to a lot of long-term complications: obesity, diabetes, kidney disease, heart disease, etc. 

That’s the best way to know that that kind of diet probably is not ideal. So we can rule that out.

But what about you individually?

I’ve come up with a few signs that a diet is working:

1) it’s easy to repeat and stick to. 

2) it’s relatively inexpensive. I remember advocates of one diet guru saying that they spent $200 a week on food. That is expensive, folks, and that’s a sign it doesn’t work well. 

3) it gives you the energy you need to get...

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Weight Loss Parody Video

In this week's YouTube video, I make fun of the weight loss industry and dieting in general. 

I had the idea for awhile and I finally made it. I have to say, it's one of the most enjoyable videos I've made. 

It's easy to take things too far, like tracking, weighing, measuring, eating too little, obsessing about our body image, and exercising. 

Unfortunately, there is a lot of bad information out there about dieting and lose weight 

The obsession with losing weight fast compelled me to make last week's video about the dangers rapid weight loss, which is one of the most searched terms on YouTube.

Everyone wants to get everything now without going through the process. 

In this video, I share with you 5 "tips" to lose weight fast, and then explain why that's all BS. 

The first part is for entertainment purposes only:


Don't forget to speak with me:

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Don't Cling to Bad Ideas

One of the most obnoxious tendencies of humans is to cling to bad ideas when we know they’re bad ideas.

I remember reading about this group of religious fanatics in the 1940’s who thought the end of the world was near. They even predicted to the day when the world would end. 

When it didn’t happen, they actually believed in the prophecy more! 

I think it was the great psychologist Leon Festinger who researched this kind of behavior. He predicted that the fanatics would concede one and for all that their prophecy was wrong. It was Festinger’s hypothesis that was wrong!

One of the great CEO’s of all time was Sam Walton. He was famous for running experiments. One when one experiment failed, he would shrug his shoulders and move onto the next experiment without complaining.

He didn’t marry the experiment, he just moved on.

Ray A Kroc of McDonald’s was the same way. He was convinced that a pineapple burger was going to be a massive...

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