Or even, not so young, free and obese. Either is fine.
As you may or may not know from the health section of this blog, I have gained and lost over a thousand pounds of weight in the course of my life. I do not eat entire cakes or packets of biscuits. I do not have regular take-aways, and I have never liked chips. The only thing I am inclined to eat far too much of is butter, and that is in conjunction with the consumption of bread or oatcakes. The minute I rule out those two things, the problem is gone. My thinner sister of the same height regularly consumes more than I do, although as she is not being bullied by a pair of vindictive old women, she gets to leave the house now and again.
That being said, I have an emotional eating issue. Sometimes whatever has happened seems very insignificant and I do not even want to discuss it, but the end result is the same. I stand in the kitchen, out of sight and try to figure out a way of not thinking about it any more. The easiest way to stop yourself talking, is to fill your mouth with food. By far the easiest.
After years of being very successful on a wide variety of diets, I am going to save you a whole lot of research in the following few paragraphs.
Other people do not matter
Listening to other people’s opinions, or even seeking them out, is not going to get you anywhere. Stop doing that. If they are critical of whatever you are doing, just avoid them altogether. This includes your family and closest friends. Sometimes especially them. If they suggest that you are an embarrassment, or that you look terrible in your favourite t shirt, even if you do, leave them behind. Attitude is a lot sexier than a tiny waist, no matter what you are or are not wearing or doing. Concentrate on that.
Low carbing is a good idea for the following reasons – if you maintain a low carb diet, you cut out simple carbohydrates such as wheat flour, sugar, potato, rice. These are cheap filler items, which nutritionists are taught help you avoid bowel cancer, and are kept within generalised nutritional advice because the advisors on the Board of Nutrition are on the payroll of large food processing companies such as Mars, Kraft, and Coca Cola. You are advised to eat them because these people know very well that they mess up your gut bacteria and keep you eating more of them. Nobody is genuinely addicted to cheap chocolate, pizza, bread, fries or fizzy drinks. If you try clearing the remains of what you have already eaten from your gut, you will soon find that you do not miss them at all.
You can achieve better avoidance of bowel cancer if you replace these things with more vegetables, and your bowel actually does a bit of vitamin extraction. If you get rid of these things, you may also catch it early enough to avoid a lot of future fungal infections, cases of thrush etc. My psoriasis, for example, only vanishes if I exclude everything apart from vegetables, grasses and seaweed. Obviously this would be a struggle all the time, but it is now a managed situation, rather than something out of my control.
You do not need to eat meat
Having been a raw foodist, and settled on a non vegan version eventually, I have nothing against you eating meat, however, as someone from a country with generations of committed meat eaters, even I only really feel the need to eat fish or meat once every three weeks or so. You certainly don’t need it every day, and you don’t even need it every week. Too much of it sits in your system and rots, so be sparing and do not do it every day. This is another fallacy spread by the meat industry. If you do feel you must every day, make sure you balance it with twice as many vegetables as meat or fish. Minimum.
The world is set up a certain way, you don’t need to be part of it
Sometimes the social difficulties of eating for your health are all too much, and you feel like giving up on yourself. Don’t. Just because everybody else can manage to eat off a normal menu and stuff a packet of crisps or whatever, down their throat without mishap, it doesn’t mean that you can. Seriously. I once put on almost two hundred pounds after trying for weeks to refuse to join one of my boyfriends in his love of pizza. It is that easy to mess up your gut bacteria, and end up craving all the things that made you ill before. A person telling you to eat like them, and that all you have to do is eat less, does not understand your problem.
Step away from the computer
This is rich, coming from a confirmed geek like me, but I know how much easier it is to live your life through your keyboard. If you are not careful, you will wake up after twenty years and wonder what happened. You still feel the same, but the mirror tells you that you have just poured the best part of your life into a machine. Take a month off it completely every year, leave your gadgets at home now and again, and see how much nicer your life is when you let yourself off the hook.
Cheese can do you a lot of damage, although it is extremely tasty. You can replace it with nutritional yeast, which tastes similar but does not feed the bad gut bacteria. Eventually you will not miss it. It causes eye bags and slows your digestion. The name of the game, if you have a weight problem, is getting the food to move faster. Twisty is able to eat whatever he wants and pretty much just think about losing weight to lose it, because his system works like a sports car. If you have a weight problem, it is likely that yours works more like a tractor. Do not eat slow moving food.
Calories are not all the same. Ketogenic diets (see low carbing) allow you to eat more than conventional diets and still lose weight, so if you are active, this is the first thing you should look at. The hazard is that one mistake costs you whatever weight of glycogen your liver is storing, which in my case also causes all sorts of fluid problems. If anyone is telling you to portion control, and that you are just weak willed, please try to remember that a lot of your ‘hunger’ is actually caused by imbalance in processing, and if you can get this right, in the form of ridding yourself of addictive and unhealthy food, you will feel and look a lot better extremely quickly without beating yourself up, or allowing anyone else to.
If you are a social creature, get yourself a dehydrator and make yourself some dried vegetable chips/crisps instead of conventional nibbles such as nuts, potato chips etc. Much better for you, much tastier and very social. Investigate raw vegan dips to go with them. Pretty soon your thinner friends, who seem to have all the answers, will be asking you for advice. You can get a really good one for under £30 from outdoor activity centres, for hikers.
Do not allow anyone to damage your confidence, and do not stay in thinking that things will be better when you are thin. Nothing changes when you are thin, except that you feel a bit better. I have had the same handful of men hitting on me, fat or thin, for twenty five years. Whatever they see in you, it isn’t your hot, hot ass, no matter what they tell you.