Weight and over-eating has been an issue with women, i imagine, since the beginning of time. Or, perhaps, since the first time cave-Husband dragged in a dead wooly mammoth, made fire, and cave-wife figured out how to skin and sauté the thing. Regardless of when it all started, there is no woman around in the modern world who has not at one point in her life looked at her body and thought, “Shucks, i should really do something about this.”
Regardless of where it came from, either hormonal attacks, or thyroid problems, heartbreaking bastards, winter-comfort food séances, claims of ‘i’m just big boned’ or simply because it was filled with jam – women have a problem with food. We eat to fill a hole that don’t need fillin’!
i never knew i had a problem, though, till recently. For the last three years, in fact.
Being a naturally tall, somewhat slender person, i spent most of my life up till recently being the thin girl with the healthy appetite. But before you all start throwing your half eaten chocolate bars at me and label me ‘skinny bitch’, know that i really am one of you now. i am a self-made convert, i saw the light in my heaviness - i do fee your pain! i have watched my scale creep up kilo by kilo over the past few years, and let me tell you, it has not been a pretty journey.
i discovered my once hot little hip huggers became muffin top pants. Choosing a bikini, which used to be all about stripes verses spots, was suddenly all about how much of the cellulite will it hide. Stretchy jeans? Less a fashion statement and more of a necessity when i went up a dress size with no money for new clothes. And i could literally feel my once ‘leetle’ rear-end follow me around with ever growing presence!
Yip, i was getting fat. i had not only one, but many ‘Shucks, i should really do something about this’ moments. Then finally, when the scale tipped what i consider to be unacceptable (i will not put actual weights in here for fear of judgement and discrimination) i decided it was time to get serious. i realized the problem was partly that i was eating too much, but mostly that i did not care what it was that i ate. i was eating irresponsibly and there-by damaging my body. It's not about being thin, its about being healthy, and excess fat rolls are just our body's way of crying out to us, saying 'please help, please save me, please feed me better!'
Diets are a joke. Seriously, people, diets are bad bad BAD for you. Yes i heard about those little pills that diminish your appetite and supposedly really don’t do anything bad to you, just stop you from craving food… Really? Things that are so packed full of caffeine and much, much worse that send your heart rate through the roof are good for you? Uh, no. I don’t think so. They actually put strain on your internal organs and basically just cause havoc to your poor inner-body. i have also heard ‘Eat just protein, lean protein it really makes you break down your fat faster and you don’t feel hungry and you can live for ages on boiled eggs and lean skinless chicken breast’… Wrong again. Meat only diets are picking up more and more flack as research shows the link between them and higher levels in cholesterol as well as other health problems. There are even links between meat only diets and hormonal problems. i would go so far as to say, attitude problems! (no seriously, its true.) It's not good for you to eat only one food group. Sure you might loose weight initially, but at what cost later?
So no. Diets are not for me. i love and respect my body too much.
AND SO, i have been trying to go back to what my mother taught me. Eat Healthy. Eat a well balanced diet. And eat as many ‘natural, unprepared’ things as possible. WHAT A REVELATION!
The less processed a food, the better it is for your body. All it takes to eat this way, making sure you are getting all your nutrients, vitamins and minerals and pretty much everything else you actually need to eat food for, is a little Googling and some personal admin. i started researching these natural foods and found that my problem with anemia that i have been battling most of my teen-to-adult life can be helped by natural foods. No more supplements. Brussels spouts have more vitamin C in them than most citrus fruits. Who would thought?
Broccoli is so high in calcium that it should be called an honorary dairy product! Not to mention it helps protect from prostate, colon, urinary bladder, pancreatic, and breast cancers! And don't even get me started on the wonders of peppers...
Natural foods are fascinating! i am really loving learning all i can about it now, so that one day, when there are mini-me’s running around, i can feed them a well thought out, well balanced diet too, just like my mom used to and i took for granted all these years.
Pairing this with calorie counting has made my life so much easier. Now i don't need to wonder 'am i eating because i am hungry?', because i can count my way through the day. i use an app on my iPhone called ‘MyFitnessPal’ (you can get it on android too) It helped me realize just how many calories things have in them, and has not so much stopped me from eating certain foods (though it definitely has done that) as it has allowed me to start eating things i love again. Yay! Potatoes! I mean, the years and years i spent believing that potatoes are fattening is a thing of the past. Baked, boiled or steamed (no oil of course) they are seriously healthy and not that high in calories after all. Especially sweet potatoes. So now, i get to eat one of my favorite things 3 or 4 times a week, guilty free! And the best part is, i am loosing weight! Yes, you can loose weight when eating potatoes, corn fritters, pumpkin pie and chocolate. Its all about not lying to yourself, preparing things properly, portion sizes, having more knowledge of what you are putting in your mouth and just having fun with it.
Now, i have not lost ’10 pounds in 10 days’ or dropped a dress size over night, but i am loosing that excess fat, little by little, and for the first time in years, the scale is actually coming down again, albeit one tiny ticker at a time. And i feel fantastic, energized and healthy again! Which is what it's all about, surely.
By the time i reach my goal weight, i am going to be so used to this new healthier eating lifestyle that i am positive i wont go and put it all on again any time soon. Chocolate covered strawberries to me!
Love, lust and fairy-star-dust