To Lose Weight, Stop Trying to Lose Weight
I’m no Audrey Hepburn but at least I can pull off a little black dress.
by Jill Escher
It’s been several years now since I’ve dropped three dress sizes in a few months and, this is the best part, the part that defies the usual yo-yo diet pattern, I haven’t gained it back. Yes, there’s that I’m-almost-50-years-old-and-have-given-birth-to-three-kids cushiony stuff around the midsection, I’m no Audrey Hepburn, and I’m hardly a six-pack lean mean gym rat machine, but fat and on the edge of obese? Those days are gone. I’m healthy, energetic and strong and can pull off quite a few little black dresses that were totally beyond reach back in the Sugar Days.
The secret? I don’t try to lose weight. I neither count calories or use exercise to “burn calories.” I am, like many people who lose weight and then keep it off, aware of my past sugar addiction and stick to eating a satisfying nutrient-rich Paleo-ish diet that keeps my body chemistry on the level, with only minor white-stuff indulgence along the way. I never go hungry.
I talk to a whole lot of people who are trying to lose weight, and the best advice I can offer is this: Stop trying to lose weight. On a podcast recently I heard someone say, “You don’t lose weight to get healthy, that’s backwards; by getting healthy you can then lose weight.” True, true.
So, you ask, what does it mean to “get healthy’? It means getting your biochemical house in order:
–Reducing blood sugar levels, and therefore insulin levels (no sugar, no grains, and, depending on your metabolism, light on the starchy stuff like sweet potatoes);
–Increasing micronutrients from your food (veggies, fruits such as berries, grassfed beef, organ meats such as liver, fish, bone broth, nuts);
–Increasing healthy dietary fats (butter, coconut oil, avocados, rendered duck fat, olive oil);
–Eliminating irritating or inflammatory ingredients or foods (grains, sugars, processed foods, industrial vegetable oils): and
–Very low-carb, high-fat eating at breakfast; and no late-night eating (12 hours without food is a realistic goal).
Get your biochemical house in order, and your body’s molecular and hormonal signals will finally shout to your fatty tissues, “You’re not needed anymore! Time to take a hike!” You can’t do this directly, you see, you have no direct power over your own weight. Your biochemistry is the boss. And you DO have control over your biochemistry.
While you and I may not end up like Ms. Hepburn, we can certainly reach that healthy place where our bodies are meant to be.