America: Here’s Why You Are Fat
I struggled with my weight my entire life. I was fat as a kid; I stayed fat as a teenager. Even in my teen years, my mother explained it away as baby fat. Then I ended up with the most enormous boobs in high school. Later I learned this gift was from an aunt on my dad’s side who passed along this gene.
During a stressful time in my life, my 5’4 “frame was down to 108 pounds. A coworker was very concerned for me. She told me I looked anorexic. It didn’t make sense to me; I honestly did not see a skinny person when I looked in the mirror. Looking back at the pictures from those days, I looked like hell. I was emaciated.
I always seemed to have at least an extra 20 pounds floating around, no matter what I did.
In 2009, our family decided to get a dog. At the same time, I accepted an offer for full-time employment as a radio personality. My predictable life was now complete. I went to work five days a week, and I found joy in walking and playing with the dog every day.
I don’t know when it finally occurred to me, but at one point, it did. I realized I needed to get new clothes. Somehow, after getting a dog and starting a job, I lost 20 pounds. And it happened practically overnight.
It was then that I realized, even though I didn’t understand the law of attraction back in those days, that I lost weight because I was no longer thinking about it. I gave my waistline no thought whatsoever. It didn’t cross my mind. I brought my lunch to work every day, and I went about my life. I just wasn’t thinking about food, cutting back, or how I could get skinny.
We are so obsessed with fat and weight in our country. I know every living and breathing human being has had some issue with their weight at some point during their life. Either too fat or too skinny. Definitely too something.
Because everybody is so obsessed, companies pop up daily to help you with a new diet or fad, a book, or a new way to count calories. A new exercise, a new piece of exercise equipment. Crossfit, boot camp, swimming, the option are unlimited. These things are designed to help you get in shape and lose weight. The problem is. The more you think about it, the more you use that credit card acknowledging you have a problem…, the more weight you will put on. And with that, the fads and equipment will continue to show up.
Not to mention the diet drugs you can take or the surgery options. If you want to lose weight, there is an option for you. Unfortunately, none of these will work. You might get there for a minute. Just don’t throw out your fat jeans just yet.
When we are in a family situation or even two people in a home, we spend too much time thinking about what we will eat. We plan menus. We shop in advance. Food is a thing. Should we go out to dinner, fast food, or take out? What about lunch? Starbucks for breakfast?
I will never forget my former partner and his eating rituals. On a weekday morning, he poured his cereal into the bowl. With just the right amount, he added milk to soften the crunchy, teeth-breaking bran. Then he ran back upstairs for a certain amount of time. Then he came down to eat. He takes a bite, then, as he is chewing, his spoon pushes all of the cereal under the milk, kind of like whack-a-mole. The sound is, bite, poke, poke, poke, poke, poke, bite, poke… You get it. This is anywhere from 8-9 in the morning.
Before I left the house, he came downstairs from working in the upstairs office. He chatted for a moment, then he looked at the big clock above the kitchen table. After seeing the time, he abruptly looked down at his watch and then tapped on it twice. He blurted after seeing the time, “it’s lunchtime!” I immediately retorted, “you just had breakfast. Are you even hungry?”
This is because of our programming. We have been trained that there are three meals a day. They occur at certain times. There are snack periods between each meal. There are names for each meal. For each meal, there are acceptable ingredients. Waffles, bacon, and cereal are breakfast. Lunch is soup, salad, and sandwiches.
Programming, advertising, and media have cemented this into your skull. Food commercials. Billboards. You believe it because you see it. Everywhere.
If I ate three meals a day. Heck, if I ate one full meal a day, I would be a chunk. The way I eat now and have for a while, I only eat when I’m hungry. Plus, I’m not able to eat very much. I never have a full, stretched-out stomach.
The thing is, we don’t need that much. I actually “feel” when I need to put something in my mouth. If it’s before I walk the dog, I might grab a few peanut butter pretzels. Those few bites will take care of the feeling of hunger. After five of these pretzels, I am no longer hungry. I go about my day until I am reminded later to take a bite. We do not need to gorge ourselves, ever.
Since I have been eating such small amounts, one salad that I used to have for lunch, now, I can barely finish half. That’s where I stop now. I am doing much better at splitting everything into multiple meals now. I’ve had the same loaf of bread, untouched, for a month now. I just don’t eat it. It’s there if I want a piece of toast.
In my new home, the only mirrors in the bathroom are from the chest up. I can’t see my body, nor do I try to look. I’ve noticed lately that my pants are falling down. I started using a belt, then I wondered if I had lost weight. I bought a scale while I was at Costco last time.
Apparently, with my new lifestyle, I am losing weight. When I first bought the scale, I was definitely lower than I’d been in years. When I stepped on it this morning after I realized my pants were falling off, I am four pounds away from my tailbone infection weight. When I was in excruciating pain for half of a year with an infection, I lost 15 pounds.
I don’t live in a space where my meals have names. I don’t feel any obligation to an omelet over a burrito if I decide to eat at 10:00am. All of these ideas are human constructs, and the ideas are making you fat.
You have a food pyramid detailing how much you should eat every day from each category. If I ate even once a day, everything it says I should eat, I would be fat. This is all stuff people have come up with. None of this is reality.
I eat what my body tells me to eat (if it is in my cupboards). I may eat a handful of peanuts before I go on a walk. Often, I grab a few handfuls of popcorn. A sit-down, multi-course meal, I don’t make. I might make a piece of chicken if I’m craving protein. I will bake a potato if I need potassium.
The idea that to be my ideal weight, I should consume a certain number of calories, fat, protein, carbs, etc., every day is ridiculous. Even when I was a young child, my body told me what nutrients to find. Okay, so it was in the form of burnt matches. The thing is, we find what we need. We are animals first. We don’t need to be told what to put in our mouths. We are programmed that we don’t innately know what to do with our own bodies.
You want to lose weight? Believe it, then you will see it. Stop paying attention to all of the nonsense coming at you from every app you download. Tune out. Having your TV on or your phone at your face, you will continually be reminded what the “human expectation” is.
Consume! Buy! Eat.
I stopped thinking about my desire to be thin, and then I was thin. Now, I have the best body I’ve had in my entire life. For the first time ever, I am bikini ready. Oh yeah… I’m in my 60’s.