I’m Afraid Of Food!

The delicious cake my niece made for my mother's birthday. I didn't have enough sense to be scared!

The delicious cake my niece made for my mother’s birthday. I didn’t have enough sense to be scared!

When I decided to tackle my weight thing once and for all, I went back and did an “autopsy” to determine why things went sideways in the past.

The last time I got to a weight where I was happy and comfortable, I was following a low carb diet. Not South Beach, Atkins or even paleo but one that included lean meat, fish, poultry and dairy and lots of vegetables, some fruit and grains. I ate carbs like cookies, cake, crackers and bread very rarely.

After about 8 months, I reached my goal weight and kept it off for about a year and a half.

I seem to be good at losing weight but I stink at keeping it off.

Step one in the “autopsy:” Tell the truth.

I used the excuse that I had a bad case of shingles, was basically bedridden for 3 months and the inactivity caused my weight gain.

Not the truth.

My eating habits had started to fall off before I got sick.

I had begun allowing myself a taste of cake here, a spoonful of ice cream there. Then it turned into a cookie here and a candy bar there.

At first the scale didn’t move so I didn’t panic. But then it slowly began to inch up little by little and before long I had put on 6 pounds.

My workouts became intermittent.

I was pushing myself to succeed in my business and volunteering a lot of my time. I was stressed and tired and I began to use food, mainly sweets, to make myself feel better.

I now see that it wasn’t the shingles that caused me to gain weight. It was my lack of self-care that brought on the shingles. And that led to many bags of Doritos trying to take my mind off the pain.

But the main thing I realized was, I got cocky. I thought that I would never go back to being addicted to sugar and carbs.

I even remember saying the words, “I’ll never go back!”

Words that came back to haunt me.

I see now that I lost the fear of the weight coming back. I forgot about the tired, wrung out feeling when I eat too much crap. And didn’t even consider the possibility of not only getting sick but contracting a chronic condition like high blood pressure or a disease like cancer.

I got cocky and the weight came back.

I’ve lived most of my life worrying about what others think and I’ve done a lot of work to break through that. I don’t believe I should live in constant terror and worry about becoming obese.

What I do now believe is that there is nothing wrong with a little healthy fear to keep me on my toes and out of trouble.

This fear includes a healthy respect for things like alcohol and food. It is an awareness that I have to be careful not to let my guard down too much.

I need to set my own limits and be clear where the line is.

I’m back to cutting down on processed carbs and sweets and eating more whole foods. And I’m always paying attention to what makes me feel like I want to eat and drink a bit too much.

That’s working for me right now.

Do you struggle with keeping weight off once you lose it? What have you learned from your past experiences when it comes to losing weight? What do you think about having a “healthy” fear of food?

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