Well, I logged on this afternoon to find all of these wonderful, kind, supportive responses....and it just brings me to tears. Thank you all SO much.
I'm not feeling any differently today. I am really sick of all of this (can you tell
All of this hideous contradictory information. Everywhere I turn, I find something that contradicts the very last thing I read.
I went through this several years ago and decided to give up dieting altogether. It was the happiest time of my life. I lasted 11 weeks, before I caved in and went back to diet rules and regulations imposed on me by health professionals seeking to make a buck off of my misery. I don't want to sound angry, because then all you will hear is my anger. I'm not angry, just so unbelievably frustrated with this overload of contradictory information.
During those glorious 11 weeks, I ate ONLY when I was hungry. I waited until I was truly belly hungry - not just wanting to eat. If I hadn't gotten there yet, I would find something to do until I was truly hungry....and before I knew it, it was dinner time.
I was so thankful for each and every bite and really savored my food. I only ate until I was just satisfied enough to stop eating. THAT was the hardest part for me, because once I started eating, I found it hard to stop.....especially if I was coming from a place of being truly, truly hungry.
In the beginning, I found that I was overeating a bit because it was just so relaxing to not have to dwell on do's and don'ts. But as the weeks went on, I began to master this. I basically ate two small meals a day - with a wee bite here and there. I was amazed to find how "little" food could satisfy. My goal was to see not how much I could justifiably eat in one day, but how little I really needed to eat to feel well - mentally as well as physically.
In 11 weeks, I lost 21 pounds, effortlessly. Even though I was eating very little food, I was so content. And the ONLY exercising I did was gentle walking out in the fresh air - because - of all things - I had the energy to do it and I WANTED TO! Amazing!
I'm going to do something that goes against my nature here and post a few things I have recently found on the web without permission to quote, but I'm at the end of my rope.
Here's one statement that I found profoundly eye opening:
Perfection May Not Be Ideal—the Theory of Hormesis
There may be some benefits from being a little bad. Hormesis is the phenomenon in which low doses of otherwise harmful substances and activities cause improvements in the body’s function. Exposure to mild stresses for brief periods may challenge the body to adapt to better maintain and repair itself—which prolongs life. This may explain why moderate drinkers have less heart disease and live longer than complete abstainers. The stress of moderate exercise may work to improve health by the same mechanism. Even low doses of radiation improve lifespan in animal experiments (whereas high doses kill).
Here is another one:
The first description of calorie restriction to prolong life was of an Italian nobleman, Luigi Cornaro, who in 1550 wrote The Art of Living Long. Suffering at the age of 35 from diseases of over-nutrition—including gout—he started a restricted diet where he limited his food to 14 ounces a day and cut way back on his meat intake. He lived to almost 100 years. He provides an example of how this therapy can be started later in life with profound benefits. His main argument was that the particular foods one eats are not as important as the quantity.
These two statements fall right in line with what I experienced during that 11-week period.
I saw another article recently about how Japanese people relate to food. They are taught - from birth - that you only eat to 80% full. They just don't ever eat to "full," and they never go on "diets." According to this article, they are amazed when they come to America to see how MUCH we typically eat, and they are perpelexed about our "diet mentality."
Also, after going back to diet rules and regulations, I have never fully implemented another program into my life. It's been over two years now. With all I was reading about health and nutrition, even though I was feeling great, I talked myself right back into the diet industry trap. Another 24 months of daily misery has followed, and not one full day of adhering to what I would deem a "healthy" diet - and with a mind obsessing about this and that.
I think the "health" of my mind is of utmost importance at this point, because I am as frustrated as all get out. Have I told you that? LOL!
I'm at the point that even if I didn't feel better by just eating whatever I wanted in small amounts, it's worth it to me not to have to live another day, not to mention the rest of my life, obsessing over these issues.
I am just so sick of it. Have I told you that?
I just wish I could hug all of you. I thought I was losing my mind....still have to wonder?
I give you this really interesting example in my life. I'm a big Coke drinker - but ONLY when I am telling myself that, for health reasons, I should cut these things out of my life and just accept the fact that it is better if I never touch them again.
However, I can have two cases of pop outside in the garage without even a thought of drinking one unless I just want one, and even then will only drink about 4 oz.
I was amazed by this when I first started just trying to eat in moderation, because I thought Coke would be the biggest issue. It wasn't. I didn't care if I drank it or not, because it was there if I wanted it. I actually found that something I thought I would never be able to live without had lost its power over me by just thinking about it differently. This is really amazing, when you think about it. I thought I was a cola addict. I learned that I wasn't a cola addict, I was a diet addict. When I took the diet mentality away, the Coke mattered little.
Just let me think that I should never have another one, and I start gulping them down like an animal in dread and fear about to face a famine of humongous proportions. My husband will say, every time.....you're thinking about dieting, aren't you? I ask him how he can tell??? He'll tell me that it's because I can't seem to stop eating and that I'm drinking Coke like a woman dying of thirst. Oh, he knows me SO well!
I mean, I even stopped obsessing about the scales when I was doing this. I played a little game with myself. Knowing how vital my health was by NOT overeating and because I believed it to be my last hope - if this was what I was going to do - I would only allow myself to weigh myself after I had spent three days where I knew in my heart that I had NOT indulged in overeating. Low and behold, I would find that I had dropped another pound. I also found, though, that if I did have a few days where I would indulge in too much food, the weight would, of course, come right back on. So, it was crucial to my health to NOT overeat. I was enjoying life so much then, it didn't seem to matter that I wasn't popping on and off the scale every day.
Now I read in SP how detrimental it is to wait until hunger....that hunger has nothing to do with it if you have a damaged metabolism. Well, the guy in 1550 did quite well, didn't he? He lived to be 102 and died peacefully in his sleep. I mean, who in the WORLD do you believe?
Have I told you that I'm just sick of this?
I really am laughing at myself and this stupid predicament that I am in.
I just read a book entitled "The Diet Myth." A very good read....he basically points out that after all of that dieting, the one who is eating "healthy" outlives the one who isn't by about 2 years! Amazing!
Quality of life comes into this, too, however, quality of life also depends on mental balance - something which I woefully lack in trying to stick to a dietary regime of any kind, outside of just following the leading of my body that seems to know when it's hungry and what it wants to eat. My part (with the help of God) is maintaining a lifestyle of moderation.
Thanks for letting me vent....even just being honest about all of this has helped my mood just a little bit today - but I'm still venting!!! Can you tell LOL!
Please know how thankful I am to know that someone - anyone - is going through this, too.
I just wish I had an answer for today.
If you all would prefer that I not "stir" this up....please let me know.
This is a SP message board. I don't want to break the rules here. I respect all of you more than you will ever, ever know.
Is it possible to stay on here and talk about NOT following any plan, but one of my own making???? Maybe a "moderation" thread?
I think I'll go out to the chicken coop and listen to their woes for now. They love to talk to me. Chickens are SO funny! (Can you guess why I can't eat chicken? Their fresh eggs, however, are absolutely wonderful!)
Thanks everyone and love to all
Edited this to apolgoze for writing a book! Oh my! If you get to the end of this!