Every since Suzanne Somers titillated us with her thigh master contraption years ago, and Jane Fonda started doing pelvic thrusts to sexy music we have been fascinated with being skinny. Ok, it’s actually been a lot longer than that but I was going for some visuals here.
Most people I know who diet say they want to be skinny. And not much else motivates them to try the different diets out there that promise to get the weight off in record short time. A little secret; If it took you years to put the weight on, it ain’t coming off in 30 days, not without major surgical intervention and major side-effects (like malnutrition and death).
Low fat, low-calorie, low taste, low nutritional diets are successful at being low success – hence the reason there are so many. People get addicted to the hype and promise of beauty and success that the models used to portray “real” results show you. So you try again and again only to fail again and again – but hey, there’s another diet just around the corner and maybe that one will work if you can just figure out the key to unlocking its success.
Here’s the skinny on skinny:
The last time I saw skinny people like this they were POWs. This example of skinny is probably not what most of us have in mind when we try to lose weight, but that’s what skinny looks like. To get to look like that takes a lot of time and effort to override your body’s survival instinct to eat. And that is why no one can sustain a diet that is low in nutrition. If you have failed at countless diets, congratulations! You are a successful failure at letting your body eat itself for survival and you get to live a little longer.
So, your set point, let’s get to that. Your set point is a natural range that your body naturally goes to when you don’t starve it or abuse it with countless diets that don’t work. And even overweight people can be starving for nutrients when they eat dead foods (which I am not implying cannot be cooked and must be raw to be living foods), on the contrary. Dead foods do not provide your body with any nutrition and only fills you up emotionally but temporarily as emotions cannot be dealt with by eating. We know that, but we do it anyway, just like diets, we do them even though we know they don’t really work.
If you were to resume eating nutritious foods that fed your mind, your cells and your body and your body settled on a certain number that in your mind didn’t fit with what you think you should weigh, but you were the healthiest you had ever been and you felt great and loved life again, would you accept your set point? Even if it meant going up a few pounds (if you have been skinny but miserable)?
Everyone has a different set point based on their genetics and genetics can be very hard to change. Tall people are tall and short people are short. Two people can be the same weight but one looks thinner and one looks more curvy. But both are at their optimal set points and both are healthy, happy and feel alive.
Do not be so concerned with a number when you start to eat right, your body may in fact decide that this is too good to be true and hold on to some weight initially, but then release the weight once it accepts that the crazy dieting has stopped and it can relax and let go and enjoy the moment. And you will too.
Are there sacrifices to eating better? Sure. Just as there are sacrifices when you don’t eat well. Life is about sacrifices and benefits. Benefits become evident quickly when you start to nourish your body and what you initially saw as a sacrifice doesn’t seem so anymore. It becomes a trade-off, a willing omission of certain behaviours that never did anything good for you in the first place, but now you can see that clearly and the burden of sacrifices eases and dissipates and you’re left wondering what you ever saw in that kind of eating before.
Your set point isn’t a goal to achieve, it’s a place that you get to naturally and you realize you’re there after you’ve been there for a while. It’s that comfortable place in your body that you have always tried to get to by dieting but could never find the key to open the door until you’re there.