Dieting vs. Lifestyle with Susan Peirce Thompson: “Health Talks”

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Video Transcript

Susan Peirce Thompson: ‘Cause the real issue is not what are you gonna eat or not eat, the real issue is how are you still gonna be doing it a year from now. That’s the issue.

TeriAnn Trevenen: Lifestyle. It’s a lifestyle, not just a small change.

Susan: And I talk so much about what that means. When you say you gotta change your lifestyle, it’s not a diet. What does that mean?

TeriAnn: Fully Embracing it. And changing everything. In your house, out of your house, where you’re going, being prepared.

Susan: Here’s what lifestyle means. It’s three things. These are the essentials of a lifestyle change not a diet change. It’s essential as air, A-I-R, that’s the acronym. A is for automaticity. You gotta make your new behaviors and habits so ingrained that they’re automatic like brushing your teeth. And the reason that’s so important is, because willpower will fail you. You cannot rely on your willpower to be executing under stress.

Jonathan Hunsaker: You can for the first three days, right?

Susan: Exactly. Or a couple weeks or whatever. But then when the stuff hits the fan … So think about how you brush your teeth. It’s like you keep brushing your teeth even when your spouse is in the hospital because it’s triggered by a certain time of day, a certain location, a certain … That’s how you gotta be weaving in your eating. Now you leave yourself on your own recognizance to set that up, you’ll fail. But take my hand, I’ll teach you how to set that up so that your eating is happening automatically. The right thing to eat is the easiest thing to eat, is the thing you are eating, no matter the conditions. So automaticity.

Susan: Identity. Like you Jonathon are a non-smoker. Deep. Deep. Doesn’t matter the situation you’re in. You’ve gotta become someone who is a certain kind of eater, Bright Line eater. A bright liner, or whatever, like a healthy eater. However you wanna language it to yourself. It’s not, “No I can’t eat that ’cause it’s not on my diet.” No. It’s like, “No thank you I don’t eat that. I don’t eat that.” Like I don’t smoke, right, identity.

Susan: And then the third one is resume. You have to have a flexibility and a way of getting back on track, because nobody’s perfect. Like perfection is not available for human beings living on planet earth. And anyone who’s naturally slender, like you TeriAnn, you are resuming back to a certain level of healthy eating naturally. Like when you veer, yes, when you veer don’t you kind of get back on track?

TeriAnn: For sure.

Susan: And there’s something in you that says, “I’ve kind of gone too far.”

TeriAnn: And I don’t like it. Yeah. I don’t like it. And it’s nice for me to get back to where my center is. I call it my center. But like my center of where I wanna be. And I love that feeling of coming back.

Susan: And those of us who don’t have a heavy magnetic pull back to a center, we have to create it externally. That’s what the bright lines help to do, and that’s what the community helps to do, that’s what the program helps to do. We’re basically jerry rigging ourselves to be like you. ‘Cause our brains don’t give it to us for free.

TeriAnn: Re-wiring your brain. I think that’s a great way to close this out, talking about the holidays, that AIR. Will you say those three one more time?

Susan: Automaticity. Identity. And resume.

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Reader Interactions


  1. AIR a great way of explaining an issue that seems to want to lead us astray. Just the realization that our own will power is not enough but AIR gives us new tools that simplify the fight of eating more healthy. Great content!

  2. I thought this was going to help with how to help me eliminate sugar. Other options, or what is actually safe!!!!!
    I had been enjoying my Coconut Water as my breakfast drink for a couple of years. No added sugar but 7-8 gm of natural sugar.

    Cancer came back so now I quit the Coconut Water and am afraid to eat anything with more than a trace.
    I believe honey is Ok so I use honey or stevia for my sweetner in teas and homemade desserts (apple/fruit or pumpkin pie, tapioca pudding, etc)

    • Try to get raw honey from local farmers if possible and avoid exposing it to excessive heat. Sorry about your cancer, treating it is only half of the solution, the other half is eliminating the causes from your lifestyle. There are many factors mostly different types of air, water and food pollution. Add to that em radiations…..check out Chris Beat Cancer.
      All the best…

  3. I have done the Bright Line Eating Boot Camp that Dr Susan Pierce Thompson has to help people remove added sugars from their diets. It IS a lifestyle not a diet. It IS do-able, but I for one would not have succeeded on my own without the support of the boot camp tribe accessed through closed Facebook chat rooms (called, “Houses”). The whole boot camp is a supportive program filled with a wealth of science-based information that Susan shares through weekly modules/lessons of sorts; conference calls; v-Logs; access to the private Facebook groups, and more. My experience is that she is not out to rip people off, but that she sincerely cares about peoples’s health. In the sharing of her own addictions and health challenges it is evidenced that Susan can relate to the struggles others go through — her own life was most certainly not a walk in the park. I have never met Susan, but I respect her and admire her commitment to help others. She is also gracious enough to point us to other people whom she respects, admires and values for their expertise in fields that are focused on helping improve people’s health/lives.

    • We’re happy to hear about your positive experience on this matter, Joanne. Thank you for sharing this with us!

  4. I’m having a complete sugar craving and can’t snap out of it. No how hard I try.. I love baking but hardly do that now but when I go out or friends call round there’s always deserts involved. I try to resist but I’m really not doing well

  5. I just hear that we should also think on the carbohidrates that become sugar in the body and not only the actual sugar. Makes lots of sense.

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