Friday, November 02, 2012
Maybe I am entirely insane, or maybe I'm on the right track. I'm not sure. I read this when someone was offering advice to another. I really hesitate to quote it and put it back out there, or comment on it. I resist that even just in my private thoughts, because I try to be accepting and respectful of others' processes and discoveries. But that is what I did. Please do not tear this person apart, it's not about that, it's more about exploring facts than the person.
"make dieting a habit. it's not something you're gonna take up for only 6 months, it's a new way of eating. you can never go back to eating what a normal person would eat, because sadly, we chubby people work differently. we store fat too easily. if all a person needs to eat each day is let's say a bowl of spaghetti and 100g yogurt, you're gonna have to eat the spaghetti and only half the yoghurt, so that you can maintain your weight. "
My tumble of thoughts that came after reading this include:
1. If I "go back" to eating what I did before SparkPeople, it may be the norm for mainly unhealthy people, but it is *NOT* normal.
2. I am not on a diet. I definitely changed the way I eat. I changed my diet/nutrition, but I'm not dieting.
3. Back to parsing the word"normal"... I've looked around at what my "normal size" (lifetime of not obese) friends eat, and it doesn't look like what I called normal, either. And when or if they did overindulge, that doesn't mean that it is the norm for their every day life. ...So I'll very happily never go back to eating the way I thought was normal, thanks.
4. Expectations are important. The power of our minds to categorize things is overwhelming. I have a whole blog brewing in the back of my head about defining one's self and how that compares to how others see us and the influence it has on our behavior. It's the "that's not like you" blog. I need to remember to write it down before I forget it.
5. Maybe she was short on time, but that is a really poor example of foods she chose. Let's chalk it up to her being a teenager.
6. I just re-read the entire passage, and wasn't so caught up in the sting of the "chubby", or the worry of misguided advice. There are a couple of valuable concepts in there. It's the bread sandwiched around the part I had taken issue with.
a.) "make dieting a habit. it's not something you're gonna take up for only 6 months, it's a new way of eating."
-Fabulous, we've all been repeating this.
b.) "you can never go back to eating what a normal person would eat"
-See # 1, 2, 3 above. And 4.
c.) "because sadly, we chubby people work differently."
-For me this immediately makes me defensive, probably because inside I feel like I'm being called names, as I was tormented on the playground as a child. For the person who was asking for help and ALREADY feeling like a hopeless, fat failure I don't see how this part would help.
d.) "we store fat too easily."
-Back to expectations. I am not flawed. I'm pretty sure that my body works the way it was supposed to, even if it naturally stores more fat than my sister's body. In the absence of disorders, I believe it's more important to find what is healthy and nutritious to eat than buy into some crap notion that our bodies don't work right because it can't process junk that is called "food" nowadays. When facing Diabetes or other disorders, I still believe that we need to find the balance of nutrients (and maybe medication) that make things work the way they ought to for a full and healthy life.
3.) " if all a person needs to eat each day is let's say a bowl of spaghetti and 100g yogurt, you're gonna have to eat the spaghetti and only half the yoghurt, so that you can maintain your weight. "
-Forget that she's talking about 400 calories for the whole day. I don't think her point was to be accurate, but it's hard for me to read this and not think about that... so.... let's imagine it says "If 2,000 calories is all a person needs to eat each day to maintain their weight at their current activity level, we have to eat even less in order to maintain it."
The jury is still out for me on that assertion. I know there's that study that's been in articles about some kind of metabolic equilibrium after weight loss, and I'm sure that my friends over on "At Goal & Maintaining" group would know way more about this than my simplified thoughts and instincts, but I think it's much more complicated than that. First of all, my activity level waxes and wanes. I'd need to constantly adjust at maintenance just to account for that. And if it's so very specific to what I'm doing month to month, how can you compare two completely different people!?
Eek, I'm late for getting ready for work. I need to jump off my soapbox now. :\