So we’re back with a new “Something More” topic…….and this week I (Rebecca) thought we’d talk about – weight. Diets, weight loss programs, and everything to do with them are popular in the U.S. right now. It seems like every day someone is coming up with a new diet, weight loss plan, drink, or pill to do the trick to magically make people lose weight. But do most of these avenues really work in the long run? They may for a little while, but do they have staying power?
Here’s my (Rebecca’s) observation, and what I’ve come to know to be true, thanks to my mom teaching me good eating habits as I was growing up (thanks mom!). Things should be done in moderation. I think that anything that has extremes in it, like completely eliminating something you like from your diet (such as sweets) is, as I said, extreme (unless the thing that you don’t eat is out of personal conviction for religious or other purposes). Denying oneself of something you like to eat can lead to not great results in the long run.
Let me give an example. For the first three years of my life, I did not know what a sweet was because my mom never served them to me. She figured that what I didn’t know wouldn’t hurt me. No chocolate cake, cookies, candy, etc., for me! Can you imagine!? That kind of food was an unknown quantity to me and totally off limits. Now, in defense of my mom, she had only good intentions behind not introducing me to sweets. She was trying to teach me to eat healthfully and save me from a sweet tooth. And while she had me in sweet oblivion (pun intended), everything was great. My favorite “dessert” was applesauce. LOL.
However, that all changed on, we’ll call it, “S Day.” The day I discovered sweets. Oh what a glorious day that was…..for me at least. Here’s how it went down. My family was at a party, and while my mom was merrily socializing, someone came up to her and said, “You need to see what your daughter is doing under the table.” So my mom went over to the table, lifted up the tablecloth, and saw her precious, three-year-old daughter, sitting there in her own little world…. surrounded by sweets galore… rapidly STUFFING her face with Hershey Kisses, like those were the last pieces of food on earth.
Much to my mom’s dismay, she had to face the fact that her dessert naïve daughter had discovered sweets, and that she’d have to start integrating them into my life…..in moderation. And that’s what she did. However, what’s the moral of the story here? If you completely deprive yourself of a food that you want, it’s almost inevitable that, at some point, you may crack and go in totally the opposite direction, undoing much of the forward progress made in the first place.
So here’s what I think (and what has been working for me). Eating healthfully (like going for a salad with chicken in it rather than that Big Mac); and in moderate portions, with sporadic splurge items (I’m thinking sweets, french fries, burgers, pizza, etc.); and exercising several days a week, should be a good start to a healthy lifestyle. Avoid extremes that you don’t think you’ll be able to maintain in the long run. Eating several smaller meals a day is a good idea, too, because it keeps the metabolism working, burning calories.
Now, obviously, there are exceptions to all this and different ideas can be added as well. Everyone is unique and the amount of exercise one needs each day, and the amount of food eaten at each meal, will differ from person to person. The idea is to try to not go away from a meal feeling overly stuffed, but just satisfied. And eating slower will help you not to overstuff, because then you’re giving your stomach time to register the food you’ve eaten. All this helps one to maintain a healthy weight.
I also think the less people worry about their weight and bodies, and just eat healthfully with good portion control and exercise, the more weight loss and healthy bodies we’ll see. When people fret over things and obsess, that’s when extremes and stress can come in and contribute to the original problem of eating too much in the first place! So just relax. God created each one of our bodies to work healthfully, normally, and wonderfully….which means, being able to regulate itself to a normal weight when we take care of it right!
I also think worry around one’s weight can sometimes stem from when people don’t feel loved unconditionally. If someone doesn’t feel loved, accepted, or of great value, then that can cause a person to have low self esteem and strive for perfection either in appearance or other ways….striving to make oneself more lovable.
However, once we internalize and receive how unconditionally loved we are by God no matter what; and the more we start to let His love help us love ourselves, and know how treasured and special and of great value we are from the inside out, than the more we can relax and let things naturally fall into place regarding our outward appearance! Then we don’t have to feel as stressed about our weight, and we can let our body size naturally transform into its correct size. See, it all still stems from unconditional love. I could expand on this a lot more, but I know my mom wants to make some comments on this next week….and this is already getting long. LOL. So…goodbye for now, and check in next week for my mom’s take on this subject!
P.S. Now might be a good time to take another peek at the “love letter from God“ video from our January 15, 2013, “If You Could Only Imagine,” Something More post.