Whether you suffer from constant weight gain or too much weight loss, this really is food for thought.
Dawn Teal on weight
I saw a great video by Dawn Teal on the subject of losing weight (and gaining it).She put forward an interesting idea that goes beyond what we usually hear.
For her, the body in its normal state does not need to gain weight (or lose weight). It regulates itself at an ideal weight for your body.
So we need to look at WHY we have gained or lost weight. Is it because we need extra fat to feel protected? Or feel we look stronger? Or because we find eating a way of comforting ourselves? Is food just food, or does it represent something else?
Likewise, why is food going straight through us? Is there something we cannot accept in ourselves or in our lives? That we can’t digest? Or do we associate food with something else deep down?
My own case
I went away with this thought, and it took me a while to understand what was going on for me. Part of my weight gain had been virtual. It was bloating that was making me look and feel as if I was 2 dress sizes bigger than I actually was. And when I no longer bloated, everyone thought I had lost weight. But in reality, my weight was exactly the same.
The other part had been a real steady increase every year of a couple of pounds, which over time had amounted to a couple of stone. I put this down to indigestion. In the case of IBS, upset bacteria levels in the gut can help cause it.
I realized that I had associated eating with comfort from an early age. I had heard so much about comfort eating over the years that I didn’t take it seriously.
Although I was eating healthy main meals, I began to notice that I would comfort eat either when I was stressed, or when my stomach was pulling and food was the only thing that would stop it.
I also realised that I hold the belief that I am fat. I was an overfed child, and a well-fed child is one that is looked after. In my family food is love. The more food you have, the better.
Weight gain and gut flora
There is also increasing research revealing a link between the quality of our gut biome and its capacity to metabolise facts correctly. In other words if you have SIBO or Candida, this could be contributing to your weight gain.
What I did about it
I realised there is a major difference between eating to nourish yourself, and stuffing. And that love (and food) is not about quantity.
When I went to the cupboard I stopped myself and thought “Why do I need this?”
On other days I managed to feel that in fact my stomach was pulling. So instead of eating something I would make sure no-one was around, push up on my toes, stretch up high with my arms, and I would burp. And the pulling sensation would subside. If it didn’t, I would try massaging just under my rib cage, and I would feel a little better.
Other times I would realise it was stress. I would take a few deep breaths, and the feeling would subside.
If you have IBS-C, another way your weight goes up is because of constipation. While your bowels are full it is obvious that you will be several pounds heavier than when they are empty. So don’t be hard on yourself when this happens. Try magnesium and exercise to help improve the situation.
This is how I broke that circle of gaining weight.
By looking into the WHY, and taking time to observe and see patterns in my own behaviour.
And by getting rid of Candida.