Tag Archives: anorexia

Weigh Your Words

I envy people who can eat whatever they want and not bear any consequences. You lot are extremely lucky! I think we are all aware that most of us don’t have that luxury. Whether it’s because of PCOS, diabetes, hyperthyroidism, cancer or whatever other reason, some of us really need to watch what we eat.

I don’t know about the rest of you but I sometimes get really annoyed by naturally skinny people – and not to be sexist, but yes, its primarily other women – waving a dismissive hand and saying something like ‘Oh, surely it isn’t as bad as all that, I don’t have to keep track of what I eat no reason you should.’ I respect that people who say things like that aren’t concerned with their own weight or size, and in all honesty that’s super for them, but the reality of this all is: you simply cannot compare one person to another. Especially not when it comes to weight, health and/or necessity.

This doesn’t just go for people not trying to lose weight mind you. This also goes for the lot of us who do watch what we eat. I may lose 2kg this fortnight while you only lose 0.5kg even if we are doing the exact same thing. Why? Because our bodies are different. My metabolism might be a little quicker than yours, I might be less further along in the weight loss than you at a point where I dot have to inrease my kj deficit yet. There are a whole range of reasons why two people may not lose weight the same way.

This is why I always get so worried when a friend tells me they’re on the latest celebrity diet because such and such lost 20kg in 6 weeks. Not only is that unhealthy and puts you at risk, it’s probably unattainable unless you’re a celebrity with time and money on hand to fix your diet. It’s also stupid. The quicker you lose weight the faster it’ll come back, which is really why you need to set yourself reasonable targets. Me, for example, I need to lose 30kg in total and I originally aimed for the steep 1 year timeframe. I’ve amended that to 1.5 years because while the initial burst of weight loss was awesome, I do nit just want to gain it all right back again and that means slowing down a little and adding in more exercise. By May next year at the latest I aim to weigh 52kg, so I’ve still got a little ways to go, but I’m nearly through.

The other type of person I have trouble with is the obese person who excuses their weight by saying ‘It’s okay, I’m healthy’ or that they’ve tried dieting and exercising but ‘it’s just too hard’ or ‘it didn’t do anything for me’. Now, its really none of my business, your weight and health don’t really affect me, but when I hear that I just want to throttle them. When I hear that I feel like my battle against obesity – and let’s be honest here, it is a battle – is being dismissed as some sort of vain attempt to conform to society. I’m being trendy, clearly. I find it rather upsetting and lately it’s been getting under my skin; I know, not very professional of me.

The truth is that Western society does seem to promote skinniness as being ultra healthy, thus the rise in eating disorders and fad diets, but on the flip side we are also plagued with obesity to such a degree that people do get dismissive about their weight. The truth is, if you are obese, you are not healthy. I’m sorry, but it’s true. Forget how much you weigh, studies are showing that increase in waist size along can lead to diabetes and other problems. I’m sick and tired of people saying ‘I can’t’, the answer may not be Low-Carb for them in particular, but there’s something out there so grow a spine and lose the extra kgs before you keel over and die. Seriously, people, your health is important! If you’re thinking about losing weight but doubt whether you can, your first step is always to say:

Yes, I can!

Clear skies (with apologies for the slight rant),
Vee

A Word About: Eating Disorders

Eating disorders are a sad reality of our modern world.

A couple of weeks ago my husband and I were setting up the Cafe and overheard two young teenage girls, probably around 14/15, talking about ‘bambi legs’ and how to get them. We shared a confused look and went back inside. A quick Google later had us both kind of shocked. Apparently ‘bambi legs’, apart from referring to legs after amazing sex, refers to bony thin legs – apparently it’s a ‘thing’ to signify how ‘beautifully’ skinny you are. These were young girls I’m talking about, girls who haven’t finished growing and aren’t even out of puberty yet! Now I know full well that I can be old fashioned when it comes to certain things – I can’t abide fully made up 12 year olds, or young teens wearing ‘adult’ clothing, some things just shouldn’t be messed with: when you’re a kid, be a kid, don’t pretend to be 19 when you’re 11, that’s just asking for trouble.

Okay, let’s move on. After overhearing yet another conversation about ‘being fat’ today, and again, coming from young teenage girls, this time about how to be a ‘better bulimic’ – because the grammar there isn’t enough to drive you crazy – I decided I had better address these issues a little bit. So I hopped online and did some research and came across this website. This site clearly defines the most common eating disorders – eg. anorexia, bulimia – and talks about signs, symptoms and potential treatments.

I think it’s important to have a good understanding of eating disorders when you’re dieting. Not only because it’s important to have a full understanding of the things people go through to conform to a certain ‘norm’. I’d like you to have a look at this video by Cherry Dollface and think about what she’s getting at. If you’re changing your lifestyle to look more like the model on the cover of a magazine – male or female! – you might want to reassess your goals: you’re never going to look like someone else. That’s just the way it works; I know we would all love to have supermodel looks, but that’s just not possible for most of us. Don’t set a goal that you’re never going to be able to achieve: it’ll just make you miserable. Society puts enough pressure on all of us – men and women, girls and boys – to look and act a certain way without us adding to the pressure by trying to be someone we’re not. We certainly don’t want to be saying “I’m on this diet so I can look like … ”; that just sets a bad example for anyone, especially the young and impressionable teens who are already confused about who they are!

Teens are probably the most pressurised of all humanity; not only do we expect them to get some sort of sensibility and education, we also want them to grow up, not hang around with the wrong crowds, stay safe, and in some cases – we don’t want them to grow up at all! They’re busy planning not planning for their future: they’re in the now and that might mean study for some, partying for others, or both. It also means figuring out who you are, trying to work out what you’re into: do you like rock music? Classical? Do you go with fashion trends or do your own thing? Are you going to get that tattoo or not? Your friends smoke, do you? Your friends drink, will you? All of these things and more make up the hazardous environment of growing up as a teen. And then, bang! Kids get swamped with images from movies, magazines, social media, the rest of the internet telling them they’re ugly, fat or have the wrong eyebrows. All of this when you’re swamped with hormones and trying to work out how you fit in the world.

Admittedly, a lot of teens cope quite well. Others don’t and turn to things to help them buff up or slim down are things like eating disorders or protein shakes. None of which their bodies are prepared to cope with. And it’s not just teens that are at risk here, adults are just as much in danger of become victims of social pressures. The only thing I can say is that if you feel pressured and you’re suffering, remember that you’re stronger than you think and this will pass! You’re your own person and the only one you have to be is yourself. You can choose that, by the way; you can choose who you want to be. And if you can’t cope with the pressure there are elements in place to help you out: talk to your GP, or at least to someone you trust – a family member, a friend – you’re never really alone.

Clear skies,

Vee