Let me just preface this by admitting that I am a food addict and my weight showed that. I was 200 and something pounds at 5'4," but about 3 or 4 years ago I made some changes, some of which were very much inspired by you, Dr. Laura. I started with exercising. I have lost over 60 lbs., I have run 4 marathons and qualified to run the Boston Marathon this coming April. I guess you could say I transformed myself from obese to athlete.
1) Exercise is HUGE in preventing cravings. I start my day every morning with a good solid exerting workout and something happens deep within me that sustains me throughout my day. I am more in tune with my body and I naturally crave the healthy foods my body needs, and besides who wants to waste a hard earned 70 minute, 7 mile morning run in only 30 seconds by eating a bunch of crap. If it doesn't heal my body from today's workout, or help fuel tomorrow's, I won't eat it--99% of the time.
2) "Nothing taste's better than thin" is a phrase I adopted from the ladies at my ballet barre class. It's what I tell myself sometimes when I'm considering eating something I know I shouldn't. But the #1 most effective way to resist eating junk at the very moment the junk is screaming your name is what I invented for myself, my...
3) "Want Meter"...for psychological reasons I have never banned anything I thoroughly enjoy from my diet. If I tell myself I am quitting ice cream, I will never stop thinking about eating ice cream, so over the last 3 years that have been successful, cutting anything completely from my diet has been out of the question. I tell myself that I am allowed to have it, only after assessing how bad I really want it, which is where my "Want Meter" comes in. When I first see the food and it's screaming my name, I usually want it at a level of 8, 9, or 10 on a "Want Meter" scale of 1-10. The rule is this: Drink a minimum of 16 oz. of water, and re-assess how bad you want it. If it is still about 7 or above--which it rarely ever is after drinking that much water and realizing that you were just thirsty-then go for it, but when you do indulge, savor every bite and after drinking that much water, you're much more able to control your inner desire to over indulge.
Thanks for all your inspiration to stay fit, be happy and feel great!