In my last article, I shared my journey out of gluttony and how I was still left with the aftermath of sin, being overweight and frustrated. In January of this year, I stepped it up on the “behavioral” side and started counting calories and going to the gym. For four months, I switched it up between 1200 and 1800 calories. I also started going to the gym and working out HARD at least 4-5 days per week. Nothing! Not a single pound lost! I even purchased personal training sessions to help.
I started to wonder if maybe I wasn’t eating enough food because it seemed like I was eating good food. Why wouldn’t the pounds come off? My husband would often joke that it was God’s sense of humor, and that I wasn’t supposed to be concerned with the results. It was as if God was putting His finger on the scale every time I got on it.
In my mind, even if I was eating too much or not enough, having gone from being 100% sedentary to working out 5 days per week, there should have been some downward momentum on the scale, something? Nope.
In March, I finally decided it was time to see a Naturopath. I wasn’t able to get an appointment for over one month. So I continued on with my eating and working out with no success. I finally got to see my Naturopath in late April. Here’s really why I feel inspired to share what I learned, my guess is that there are many women who are or have experienced what I have. Even being the overweight person, I realized I was just as judgmental towards overweight people as skinny people are (no offense to nonjudgmental skinny people). I always saw myself and others who struggle with their weight as unmotivated and lazy.
My first appointment with the Naturopath was extremely enlightening. She did blood work but prior to any results she listened to my long list of symptoms of why I needed to be there. The reoccurring theme in everything I listed was that I was just plain exhausted. She could tell bottom line without any results that it was obvious my metabolism had stopped working, which I had pretty much assumed at that point. Yet I had no idea how integrated my metabolism was for my entire body to function properly. Long story short, it appears that my many years of diet pill usage had wreaked havoc on every system in my body. I have since learned that I have Hypothyroidism, Adrenal fatigue, Anemia, Vitamin D3 deficiency, low anabolic steroid and elevated liver enzymes. These ailments all had compounding impact on weight loss and energy levels.
She also shared with me (and I have since found a book that supports her reasoning) that because my metabolism isn’t functioning properly, when I sit down and eat a 500 calorie meal, my body immediately stores at least 300 calories. It only has the ability to use about 200 calories at any given time. So if I only eat 1500 calories in 3 meals, than I am off the top storing at least 900 of those calories. The key is to eat at least 6 meals a day with no more than 300 calories at any given meal.
I have been spending some extra time educating myself on how my body should and does function. I found a book called Ultrametabolism by Mark Hyman, MD that has been extremely insightful. Basically the author says (I just love it), that it’s not my fault! Can you believe there’s a book out there that says it’s not your fault? Well, in my case it kind of was my fault to a large degree but after reading this I see how there were many factors beyond my control that have been contributing and it all boils down to the fact that I have no understanding of how my body works and what it needs to function optimally, or at all for that matter.
You can check the book out for further reading but it boils down to the fact that whole foods are key, our bodies aren’t meant to digest many of the foods available today, our bodies weren’t meant to process the chemicals and toxins we’re exposed to, and once your body starts reacting there isn’t much you can do by simply eating less to counter the problems.
Our internal system is highly connected and when there’s a problem with one area it will impact other areas. One of the most important things I’ve read is because our “convenience” foods are so over processed they are depleted of the nutrients our bodies need to function properly. A main culprit of this is high-fructose corn syrup. This stuff is so bad! It is the stuff that causes us to overeat and gain weight. It keeps us hungry and it keeps us from knowing that we are full. I haven’t even hit on possible food allergies yet, that’s my next project. I do know that if there are hidden allergies, you might as well not even try dieting as it will be impossible if you are eating something you’re allergic to. Basically you shut down your whole system.
I wanted to share some of this for those who have checked their hearts for gluttony, yet find it really hard or impossible to lose weight. There is a whole system within us that has been damaged and it will take the right foods and supplements to heal it.
I have also learned how my body has worked against me for fertility and even my sex drive. What I thought was possible sin on my part was actually hormonal. Compounding impacts!
P.S. you can download a summary of Ultrametabilism for free here: http://www.ultrametabolism.com/