The Habit Concept

- POSTED ON: Feb 13, 2014

Habit formation is an important goal for behavior change interventions 
because habitual behaviors are elicited automatically
and are therefore likely to be maintained.

All habitsno matter how large or smallhave three components, according to neurological studies.

  • a cuea trigger for a particular behavior;
  • a routine, which is the behavior itself;  and
  • a reward, which is how your brain decides whether to remember a habit for the future.

The two basic rules for forming a Habit are:

First, find a simple and obvious cue.
Second, clearly define the rewards.

According to Scientists, Habits are so powerful because they create neurological cravings.  Most of the time, these cravings emerge so gradually that we’re not really aware they exist. But as our brains start to associate certain cues (a bakery box!) with certain rewards (yummy pastry!), a subconscious craving emerges. And so whenever we see the bakery box in the break room we start craving a pastry—even if, just moments before, we weren't hungry at all.

If you can identify the right cue and reward—and if you can create a sense of craving—you can establish almost any habit.




For the past six years I've been interested in the well-thought-out Habit concepts of The No S Diet, and at  present, I am very focused on turning some specific Behaviors into Habits.


I believe achieving success in this area would be tremendously helpful to me in the areas of weight-loss and maintenance.  Wouldn't it be great if I CRAVED the Eating BEHAVIORS that served to keep me a "normal" weight?



Although I'm finding this type of Habit formation quite difficult, I feel certain that it's possible. During the past nine-and-one-third years, I've succeeded at establishing the habit of tracking all of my food intake into a computer food journal every day. Now… if I can just do the same thing with several specific positive eating behaviors …….





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Existing Comments:

On Mar 02, 2014 oolala53 wrote:
Boy, I need to apply this to several areas, though food is not the most important one these days. At this moment, I find it hard to believe that the reward will materialize for some of the behaviors. I'm curious what the other positive eating behaviors are that you aim for. Are you willing to share?

On Mar 03, 2014 Dr. Collins wrote:
             Hi oolala53, thanks for your interest. From the No S forums, I know you have personally achieved long-term success from using No S as a diet guide. I really like the way those forums accept and encourage many individual modifications to the basic rules of Reinhard's No S eating plan, and highly recommend them to people who are interested in working to establish positive eating habits. I'm a firm believer that it isn't a one-size-fits-all world, and each of us must work out our own eating plans. I've learned that eating behaviors that some people find personally positive are personally negative for other people. I plan to write more about this in some future article, and will probably include some personal examples at that time.

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