Yes, it’s the question asked by many millions: ‘Why can weight loss be so difficult?’ Here are a few thoughts:
Let’s start with Evolution. As we evolved, obviously our food supply as evolving apes and hunter gatherers would be erratic. So when we had a lot of food, we would eat it, put some fat on, and that fat would sustain us when food was harder to find. When we went hungry, the body would change so that it released the fat stores as slowly as possible in order to keep us alive longer.
So we have evolved to put on weight easily and not lose weight easily. When we try to lose weight our body resists and fights back. It is not as simple as just calories. In our modern world, we have a ready supply of food, so those days without food don’t happen in societies like ours (for most of us). This is one reason why it is currently believed that regular fasting is good for you.
Our body also decides what out best weight should be. So if we are 10 stone, it treats that as our normal weight and will fight to keep us at that level and not lose weight. However, it allows us to put weight on. So if we went from 10 stone to 12 stone, the body takes that as the new normal weight and will fight us when we try to lose. And so on.
We seem to have a lot of toxins in our diet, and rather than allow those toxins to poison us, the body hides them away in fat. So again, if we try to lose weight, it resists so that we don’t release those toxins.
Now then we can consider modern food, chemicals, toxins and so on. All the stuff that goes into our body interacts with itself and us. There is a very complex process happening that even now is not totally understood by medical professionals. There are foods that supposedly encourage fat to dissolve and foods that resist allowing fat to dissolve. Some chemicals such as artificial sweeteners encourage our body to hold onto fat, so those low calorie foods and drinks can be just as bad for us as the full calorie ones. So again, it is not just about calories.
I haven’t got anywhere near the psychology bit yet. But that would include eating patterns as a learned behaviour, eating as an act of rebellion, as an act of protection, as a symptom of depression, as an addiction to sugar (carbohydrates), as reaction to food intolerances…well, let’s just say the psychology of eating is just as complex as the physiology.
Finally, there are so many ‘experts’ out there, so many fad diets, that people genuinely don’t know where to turn.
So we become afraid of food. Every mention of it makes us angry, or sad, or depressed.
This doesn’t mean we can’t lose weight, it just means that it is not as easy as people think.
Here is a good way of re-assessing your relationship with food: Imagine that you have two parts of you that need feeding, your Stomach and your Soul.
Your stomach just wants to be filled, and no matter how much you eat, it will never be happy. It doesn’t care what you put in there, it just demands endlessly.
Your Soul on the other hand wants food that nourishes it. Your Soul is like a bright shining sun, lodged inside you that contains the real You. It holds all your Joy, Passion, Laughter, Potential, Wonder, Creativity, Energy and so on. To feed the soul, you need food that is just as bright and shining and full of Energy. Fresh food, food cooked freshly or eaten raw, organic food, free range, as additive free and natural as possible.
What we quite often eat is food that may have been fresh once, but it has been pulped, mashed, ground, and mixed with additives. Food that is covered in insecticides and herbicides, meat that has been pumped full of antibiotics, meat from animals that have been crowded in sheds and never seen the sun. Good quality fresh meat has fat in it that is good for you. Factory farmed meat has fat that may well contain toxins.
So when you choose what to eat, choose to feed your soul and your soul will grow, you will feel better, you will change and you will lose weight. Because now you are looking after the real you. Your stomach will growl because it just wants any old food. Let’s train it to eat food for the soul instead.