Posts Tagged weight loss

Fine-Tuning Your Health

 

The feat of riding a bicycle all by ourselves for the first time is a milestone in childhood. It is not merely a physical feat. Certainly, all the right neurons in the brain must engage and our body must be physically able, but the mind’s will and the spirit’s courage make it all happen.

In the same way, reaching and maintaining our optimal health, wherever we are in our lives, is an extraordinary achievement. It involves more than wise choices in food selection, preparation and maintaining an acceptable weight range. The key to being truly healthy is complex and requires we stay vigilant and inspired to maintain a well-balanced, systematic approach in nourishing our bodies, minds and spirit. We must love ourselves that much.

We each have an innate sense of knowing when we are in harmony with the rhythm of our lives and when we are not. The proportions and priorities of life keep changing and all the fine tuning is left for us to adjust as we go along Balancing the collective resources of our body, mind and spirit with our needs and the world around us is the foundation of the continual healing process that defines a truly healthy life. Our excesses and deficiencies are there to balance us, not to diminish us.

Establishing balance in the care and feeding of YOU does not happen all at once. Real change is best achieved gradually, as an understanding of food and your needs as a woman deepen. Trying to change too much or too abruptly is a set up for failure. Change and balance must go hand-in-hand as you master the art of feeding yourself. The best diet in the world must include healthy foods for every aspect of your being – Body, Mind and Spirit.

 

 

“A Binge Is A Binge….”

untitled.png emotinal eatingThere is a wide spectrum of unhealthy eating among women. Removing most of the cheese from a slice of pizza is not quite the same thing as purging the entire contents of your stomach after a meal, but the two behaviors may be related.

Going on a very low calorie diet for a month to “look decent” in last year’s bathing suit is not the same thing as developing a total aversion to food, but they can also be related. Some women consider having an order of French fries with their lunch a binge and others may binge by consuming an unimaginable large quantity of sweets throughout one evening. The truth is a  “binge” is a binge.

Compulsive, obsessive and addictive eating behaviors are all symptoms of something that needs our attention and needs to heal. Besides compromising our health and well-being to lesser and greater degrees, we still put ourselves at risk with routinely unhealthy eating patterns. It is important to find out what the real problem is and be open to appropriate medical and psychological interventions when needed.

The issues we face in feeding ourselves can be giant clues about what we need to learn in our lives. They are to be explored, not avoided. Resolving issues we think are weight-related can help us to be emotionally and spiritually fit enough to live deliberately joyful lives.

 

I Would Be Happy If I Could Only lose Weight….”

410950321Diets fail because they are an offspring of control. They are disguised attempts at manipulating our external environment to achieve a change that must come from deep within ourselves. Following someone else’s rules and setting arbitrary limits about everything we put into our mouth cannot possibly harness the power of our own healing.

Most “diets” come to predictable ends. They are subject to boredom, disillusionment, impatience and lack of joy. They keep us hooked for a while on achieving an outcome that may have been unrealistic from the start. Any diet based on the common belief “I would be happy if I could only lose weight” leaves us feeling miserable, if not a little brokenhearted.

Even when we lose weight, if we still think about ourselves in the same, old ways our food issues continue to be a domineering force in our lives. We still think that “thinner is better.” We still talk about losing “five more pounds” even after we reach a more satisfactory weight range. We still stand in front of the mirror trying to decide if we are still fat.

Succeeding on a new diet or healing your relationship with food can both result in achieving an ideal weight. Whether the amount of weight lost is the same or quite different, it is only by their permanent outcomes can you tell them apart. When you go off the diet, if everything returns to the way it was and nothing else in your life has changed except the number on the scale, it’s very unlikely that number will remain where it is.

When you heal your relationship with food, your life is transformed. Weight loss is easily maintained because you have gained insight about your old behaviors and reframed your thinking about food and hunger.  Inspiration comes from the desire to be healthy, not wanting a smaller body. You have learned how to live a more satisfying life with a more enlightened relationship with yourself.

Healing and Weight Loss

pyramidLOGO_blueReaching a healthy weight and maintaining it is about making your life better, not taking it over with a diet. Feeding your mind and spirit with deliberate and thoughtful regard is as fundamental to lasting health and a life well lived as healthy eating is for your body.

From a body- mind- spirit perspective, every aspect of your being experiences hunger, needs feeding and has its unique food requirements. Some or all parts of you are clamoring to be fed all the time.  Understanding that hunger is not limited to your body is the first step to healing your relationship with food and bringing awareness and acceptance to every aspect of your being.

Today’s drama and confusion about our weight in the throes of an obesity epidemic makes it hard to reframe the meaning of hunger and food in our lives and make a more compassionate shift in how we take care of ourselves. Whether swift and urgent or persistent and enduring, your hunger is an invitation to heal and food, in its broadest sense, is what heals you. Healing your relationship with food must begin with healing the relationship you have with yourself, on every level of your being.

Don’t believe that changing your diet and your weight will make you a “new woman.” That’s not a realistic goal. Seeking to open to everything you are is the real motivation for any change you want to accomplish in your life. Weight loss is too small a goal to sustain when you don’t feel good about yourself and have a hard time understanding your body as a sacred aspect of your being. As you learn how to make benevolent connections to the foods that feed your body, mind and spirit, achieving and maintaining a healthy weight falls into place.

Succeeding on a new diet or healing your relationship with food will both result in achieving a healthy weight. It is only by their permanent outcome that you can you tell them apart. When you go off the diet, if everything returns to the way it was and nothing else in your life has changed except the number on the scale, it’s very unlikely that number will remain where it is.

When you heal your relationship with food, the weight you have lost in the process is easily maintainable because you have reframed your thinking about the meaning of food and gained insight about your old behaviors. The real breakthrough is never about the diet but about understanding your hunger and knowing where it is coming from. Limits are set wisely, but not when it comes to living with freedom and joy.  Your life is transformed.

 

 

Just Where Is the Dysfunction in “Dysfunctional Eating?”

shutterstock_165652964Our body weight does not define the degree of dysfunction in our eating. Anytime we use food to ease our despair rather than nourish our bodies and support our well-being, our eating is dysfunctional.

It may appear more obvious that someone needing to lose one-hundred pounds suffers with eating and food issues more than someone needing to lose fifteen, but body weight hardly defines the degree of despair we hold about our lives.

When food and despair become entwined, we lose sight of feeding ourselves and try to feed the despair, instead. Feeding despair is often a driving force behind our misuse of food and becoming entrapped in harmful eating patterns. Eating is “dysfunctional” when it leaves us on the other side of good health and loving our lives.

Using food in an effort to hide anguish from ourselves or others does not eliminate ease  pain or heal it. Understanding and accepting our vulnerabilities and difficulties as valid and endearing aspects of who we are is the foundation for true healing. Everyone comes face- to- face with all kinds of seemingly external obstacles that stand in the way of self-discovery. If yours are about your relationship with food, these obstacles are your calls for healing your life. They represent the turmoil within to know and accept everything about yourself, even the parts you don’t yet understand.

It may be sobering to admit the psychological, emotional and spiritual burdens that our body and food issues can impose on our lives. For some of us, decisions about food and eating are so layered and complicated that they become a source of on-going tension that never lets up. We become so caught up in the daily struggle that we don’t fully grasp that our lives don’t have to be this way. Before we know it, tomorrow is already upon us and the struggle begins again. A different paradigm for thinking about food can free you from thoughts about being or becoming fat, and all the other related issues that have taken a stranglehold on your life. What Part of You Is Hungry?