Women spend 17 years thinking about dieting! Here are 17 things you can do instead

A shocking new study has shown that we spend nearly 17 years of our lives stressing about diets, considering calories and generally panicking about our weight.

Surely we can't be the only ones who think this is a bit ridiculous? Think of all the amazing things you could achieve if you took all that mental energy and channelled it into something productive!

Here are 17 things that you could do in those 17 years you think about dieting...

1. You could become a doctor three times over: Think about your name. Now think about it with 'Dr' in front. Now imagine yourself saving lives Grey's Anatomy-style.

2. You could see the world: According to a study by Engage Mutual - a financial services company - women spend a staggering £25,000 on dieting during their lifetimes. A round the world air ticket, plus hotel stays, insurance, taxes, food and factor 30 suntan lotion costs about £18-£22,000. A beach in Thailand sounds a whole lot better than a Weight Watchers meeting in the village hall, right?

3. You could move up the career ladder: Expert nutritionist Kimberly Snyder believes time spent worrying about diets actually impacts our ability to focus solely on our career aspirations. Spend 17 years of your life planning world domination instead...

4. You could write a book: First time writers take between one and three years to complete their first novel, while seasoned pros can take three to five months! Start writing now and in 17 years you could have a whole library full.

[How the 5:2 diet worked for me]
[How to make a BIG difference to your bikini body - FAST]
[Workout: A fitness plan to get your dream bikini body]

5. Become a baking pro: If you fancy yourself as the next Mary Berry you could use your 17 years to read every one of her books, practise every one of her recipes and generally become queen of the baking world. Who knows, you could be a future Great British Bake Off contestant.

6. Become a yoga master: Get downward dog down with 17 years of solid, stress-free practise. You'll be zen in no time...

7. Explore Tantric sex: This tricky sexual technique might seem impossible when your brain is so focussed on calories consumed. But clear your mind of cake and watch as your body becomes your sexual temple. 20 minute long orgasms? Yes please!

8. Read the best-selling books of all time (and then some): In 17 years you could read all of these top-selling novels that have shaped history and still have time for Victoria Fox, Sylvia Day and a splash of Jackie Collins.

9. You can develop the next big app: With all that extra brain power you'll be able to use these simple top tips to create your own app. The royalties from a game bigger than Angry Birds could be yours.

10. You could start extreme couponing: Cutting coupons and surfing the net for voucher codes could replace all that time you spend in Tesco reading the back of labels for calorie content.

11. You could do a massive Friends marathon: Stick on season one and enjoy the wonderfulness of ten series of Monica, Rachel, Joey, Phoebe, Chandler and Ross. It will take you 83 hours back-to-back. That's three and a half days!

12. Learn how to make your own clothes: Once you're a dab hand at sewing you can make your own dresses and even design your own tailored collection. Forget Topshop it will be Youshop.

13. You can train for a marathon: With 17 years spare you'll be able to throw on those running shoes and pound the pavements in preparation for the world's best marathons. With nearly 20 years of running experience you might even be able to try the hardcore Sahara run *Rocky theme tune playing in background*.

14. You can learn to meditate: Clear your brain of thoughts of scales and meditate like Rosie Huntington-Whiteley. This difficult discipline requires time to master and with nearly two decades spare you'll be sorted.

15. Get your family tree sorted: Exploring your family history will be simple pimple when you've got time to focus on birth records and marriage dossiers. You never know, you could be related to royalty!

16. You could learn to play guitar (and write your own hit album): If Helen Flanagan can write a song, then by god, so can you! Learn how to play an instrument and then turn those childhood poems into ditties worthy of Bob Dylan and Joni Mitchell (hopefully).

17. Do EVERYTHING you've never quite had time for: Fixing the lamp, filling that hole, watering the plants, fixing the driveway, sending that letter - everything you've always been too busy to do can now be done on time! Yay.

What do you think?