Archive | October, 2011

Carpe diem: seize the veggie burger!

26 Oct

Well, this week has been a particularly good week for many reasons. I have been eating healthy, working out, and cooking instead of eating out. It’s amazing how changing one thing in your life can make you want to improve other things. Part of my “eating addiction” had a lot to do with eating out. Those of you with children especially understand that going to restaurants can be the only thing you do to socialize anymore. Unfortunately, that habit tends to add up quickly-both in pounds AND dollars. What I try to do is re-create healthy alternatives of what I like at restaurants at home. I had a veggie burger today with reduced fat bleu cheese and low calorie bread. The flavor was very similar to my favorite burger at Fuddrucker’s but half the calories and half the price. No, it’s not exactly the same, but it’s close enough for me to keep on track. I try to remember that I won’t be sad about avoiding certain bad foods once I’ve lost my weight. When I look back on life, I won’t remember what I ate, but what I DID. Now that I am slimmer, I feel so much better-and not just because of improved self-esteem. I physically feel better. Some people insist that you have to allow a “splurge” once in a while, or eventually you’ll break; however, I don’t think that’s true for everyone. Americans especially have a very unhealthy relationship with food which, I think, has led to the high rate of obesity. Food should not be a reward or an activity to do when you’re bored. It should not be used as a way to bond or bring people together, and it certainly shouldn’t be used as a mood stabilizer. We need it for survival. We don’t live to eat, we eat to live! If you’re living your life (as I was) constantly planning your next meal, then are you really living at all?

Learning healthy habits.

17 Oct

OA is not a diet or weight loss program, but a recovery program. There are no rules about what you can and cannot eat, because each person is incredibly different.  For instance, I have had to cut out hamburgers almost all together, but I can have a cookie or cup of ice cream without consuming the whole container. Some people could not stop after having a single Oreo, but couldn’t care less about cheeseburgers.  I’m also certainly not going to stuff myself on green beans or broccoli either. These are not my particular trigger foods. I’ve also had to change certain behaviors that will lead to overeating. I have to force myself to prepare a plate when I eat, or buy individually packaged foods, otherwise I will be inclined to keep grabbing for more chips (or whatever) long after I’m full. I’ve also learned that the evening is when I’m more inclined to overeat-right when the kids go to bed and my husband and I watch T.V. If you’re trying to lose weight, it might be beneficial for you to really be aware of your habits and how you feel right after each meal. Are you the type of person who ALWAYS eats in their car? Did you know that some studies show a person tends to eat up to 3 times MORE when their mind isn’t focused on their meal? Some people insist on breakfast. I personally do better when I don’t eat breakfast. There is really only one way to lose weight-burn more calories than you consume. There are a million ways to get there. You just have to decide what works for YOU.

Overeating/Food Addiction vs. Self-Control

14 Oct

“There is no such thing as being addicted to food. People are just lazy.” “Fat people just have no self-control. If they really wanted to, they would stop going to the drive-thru and start eating right!”

 

Good morning. My name is Katy, and I am a compulsive overeater. (Hi Katy) How many of you have heard these comments before? How many of you have actually said these things? To understand food addiction, one must understand addiction in general. I will keep this brief because there is a lot more to it, but I’ll sum it up the best I can. According to the DSM IV, one of the clearest signs of addiction is “the substance use is continued despite knowledge of having a persistent or recurrent physical or psychological problem that is likely to have been caused or exacerbated by the substance.” Here’s an example. J keeps using heroin despite overdosing 3 times. H keeps drinking vodka even though she killed someone in a drunk-driving accident. F keeps eating 30,000 calories a day, even though he has diabetes, high blood pressure, and is over 400 lbs. I will add a link to the criteria, because as I said, there is more to it than that, but I think this gets right to the point. If food wasn’t an addiction, there wouldn’t be  such a thing as bariatric surgery. You think that’s the EASY way out? Well you tell me. Would you consider (really think about this) going through invasive, possibly life-threatening surgery if you thought you could just exercise and diet to lose weight? No, you probably wouldn’t. There are a few differences between what most people usually classify as addiction and food addiction, however. Both J and H can hypothetically stop using heroin or drinking. You do not need them in any form to survive. F will still have to find a way to eat. He will be forced to drive by his drug-dealers’ houses everyday, see their billboards, and watch their commercials. He will be exposed to his drug of choice on a regular basis, ALL THE TIME, by people literally pushing it on him. Now, I’m not going to get into what’s wrong with the food industry. That’s not why I’m here. I want you to seriously consider what it must be like for someone who is actually a food addict. Then you might consider if you might be one. Do you continue to eat badly despite consequences as a direct result of those choices? Then you might need to seriously consider getting help. The first step, they say, is admitting your powerlessness over your addiction. Thanks for reading and keep coming back. It works if you work it. 🙂

A drug is a drug is a drug.

14 Oct

Ok. So for those of you familiar with the 12 Step program (specifically dealing with drugs and not so much alcohol) you already know what that means. For those of you who were blessed without the addictive personality (or for the ones still in denial) here’s what I’m talking about. As an addict, if you’re working the 12 steps and working on your recovery, you’re told that a drug is a drug. What that means is that even though you’re not shooting up 10 times a day anymore, if you’re still drinking alcohol, you’re not in recovery yet. All you’re doing is trading one substance for another, and it’s only a matter of time until you start using your drug of choice again. Ok, so what in the world does this have to do with dieting? Good question.  If you’re the type of person who is addicted to food, you’re likely addicted to other things…or you teeter on the line between abuse and addiction. Either way, you like doing things rather excessively. So when you imbibe alcohol, you probably don’t have just one. That’s all fine and good, especially if you’ve set aside points/calories for those drinks until you start feeling the effects of the booze. Remember “inhibitions?” Yeah, when you lose those, you don’t just start dancing on tables. You also stop caring so much about the “diet” you’ve been working so hard to keep. And, you may eventually get to the drunken munchies. Tell me, do you ever crave a salad when you’re shit-faced? No…you crave Jack in the Box and Taco Bell, Whataburger, or whatever else is open at 2am once the bars close. My point is, if you’re a food addict, you’re not “dieting.” You’re in “recovery.” But you can’t start the process until you start realizing that there might be certain foods and certain habits that have to change drastically, or be eliminated from your life forever. I still struggle with that to this day. I was doing well these past couple of days, and then I ate about 4 greasy pieces of pizza with friends after having several high-calorie/points drinks. Ok, so as long as you don’t do that every day, you should be fine, right? Well….it’s a little more complex than that. I’ll save that for another day. 🙂

Hello, my name is Katy, and I’m an overeater.

12 Oct

Well, I decided to start this blog because I thought there might be some people out there who might be interested in what I have to say. If nothing else, I can look back on my weight loss progress and see how far I’ve come. A little background might help. I am a 26 year old married mother of two.  In high school, I was pretty popular. I was an officer on drill team and in the top choir. I also graduated with honors with a class of 500+ seniors. I would say I was fairly successful. I had some “issues” with weight in high school much like many other teen girls. I was never satisfied with my appearance, specifically my weight. The most I ever weighed in high school was 135 lbs. Fast forward to 2011. At 5’2″ the most I’ve ever weighed is 191 lbs. not pregnant. I am now “down” to 160. However, there was a point in time on Weight Watchers where I was able to reach 155, but I didn’t stay there for long. Why do so many people lose lots of weight, only to quickly gain it all back? This blog will hopefully address those questions. My opinions will be based on my own experiences, observations, and knowledge of addiction. Um…if you’ve made it this far, kudos! I hope you keep coming back. 🙂