22nd February, 2012
Recently I ran into an old friend and hardly recognised her because she had lost so much weight. The transformation is incredible, and I was thrilled for her.
I asked her: “How did you do it?” She told me it was a liquid diet and high protein diet. I wondered how she keeps it (the fat) off? After all, she cannot live on that forever. Will her lean new body be enough to keep her motivated and strong enough to do the right and important things?
One of the most special things about human beings is that they are each unique and special in their own way. You are totally different from me; and I am totally different from you. It is part of what makes us so fascinating and wonderful —we are unique. So if we are unique then why do people who create this various diets and exercise programmes assume that we will all lose weight eating the same foods? For example, would it make more sense to have an eating plan that specifically suits you and your lifestyle?
WHAT MAKES YOU UNIQUE
We all have different body rhythms, you might be a night owl; your partner an early riser. You might be at your most energetic as the sun is setting; while your partner can jump out of bed at 4 a.m. without a second thought.
He might prefer to have three full meals a day; while you probably graze on food whenever you have the chance. If you are busy all day, you might only eat in the evenings and skip breakfast: another person might have a really healthy breakfast but then eat fish and chips for lunch three times per week because they have not got time to cook a meal at home. We are different!
Eating plans rarely take into account the differences we have. They are based on calorie count; maintaining energy level throughout the day; and restricting various foods.
This in itself is not a bad thing. For example, research has shown that eating five smaller meals per day is better than three big ones. It is also better for you to have a decent breakfast than start snacking on foods high in fibre in the morning hours because you are hungry and your body is screaming for some quick energy.
Eating foods high in fats, starch and other heavy ingredients late at night is not that good for you because your stomach will appreciate a rest when you go to sleep and not have to work overtime to process the remains of your high dinner.
Dr Seyemour M. Weaver, the host of Solution for Lifelong Health and Beauty, stressed that these facts have stood the test of time and so to base eating plans on these ideas is not a bad thing.
But come to think of it, WE ARE NOT ALL FAT FOR THE SAME REASON.
In the introduction I mentioned that one can become overweight through eating foods lacking in nutrition. My personal experience also showed me that one can actually gain weight through not eating at all- putting your body into starvation mode will actually trigger it to store every calorie you put into your mouth as fat because it is not sure when you are going to eat again.
Other things that can make losing weight difficult can include prescription of medication such as anti-depressants; low iron count; smoking and drinking alcohol and illnesses such as problems of diabetes.
THE WAY FORWARD?
The most effective way to get an eating plan that works for you is to see your medical physician first. You need to rule out any medical condition, then do a blood test to be sure you are not lacking in necessary nutrients and important minerals like magnesium, iron, zinc.
Your health practitioner can help you work out what aspect of your lifestyle makes it difficult to lose weight. These can include stress, overwork, pregnancy (I discourage pregnant women from going on diet. Rather, I urge them to seek doctors’ advise)
Also, our bodies have been designed by God to accept certain foods and reject some. Are there some foods you are allergic to? You may have to discontinue their consumption. For example, I don’t eat rice at night at all because my body won’t digest it easily. I just go for fruits and vegetables instead.
Exercise and activity will go a long way to help. But then because we are unique, I have good options which includes walking, biking, dancing, swimming, which are all large muscles sustained activities which will help you burn off fats.
I’m sure with all these in mind you are on the path to a fitness lifestyle.