Obesity – 11 Keys to Nurturing Emotional Health for Weight Loss Success

Diet and Lifestyle | Weight Loss for Health 1 1 Comment

We have all heard how obesity and weight gain is rapidly on the increase. We are aware of the health risks that excess weight places upon our body. The available information about health, diet and exercise is enormous, so why are we not seeing positive change? Why is it that year after year the statistics from the WHO (World Health Organization) reveal increases of obesity and weight related health problems?

As you may have read in other articles that I have written, there are definite underlying health problems that can make weight loss more difficult such as gut toxicity, low thyroid function and stress. But frequently this is not the case.

Sadly in my clinic, I see patients who are demanding results on the one hand, but on the other hand are not prepared to make any changes to their diet and lifestyle. So let’s set the record straight – in the vast majority of cases, obesity comes down to diet and leading a sedentary lifestyle. Low thyroid function is frequently triggered by excess weight. Yes, once you have low thyroid function it will slow metabolism and increase weight. But having low thyroid function cannot be 100% blamed on an inability to lose weight.

It is also true that gut toxicity can contribute, but many people without a weight issue also have gut toxicity. Stress can induce emotional eating, produce a lack of motivation and glucose related hormones. But the flip side is that stress is improved with exercise. The stressor can in fact be the lack of self esteem that goes with a weight problem. And because a bad diet is usually devoid of proper nutrients, the body is under stress on a physical level also and has a reduced ability to produce the feel good brain neurotransmitters.

Of course genetics will play some part. In fact the study of nutrition and genetics (nutrigenomics) explains that although we are genetically programmed to be more susceptible to some health issues, it is our diet and lifestyle that determines how our genes are expressed. With family it is not just our genes that determine what health characteristics we inherit, but it is also the habits that we develop in our childhood that can influence our eating and exercise habits as adults.

So when embarking upon a weight loss program, it is important to take in the big picture. And most important of all, it is necessary to take on board the fact that you are responsible for your own health and that your own diet and lifestyle has brought you to this point. There is nothing more important than recognizing this fact.

There is a saying which always rings true to me. “Without change you can expect more of the same.”

And the crux of this statement is that you and you alone can make change happen. All the good advice in the world is not going to sink in or be embraced until total responsibility is taken for your own health.

So here are a few keys for weight loss success;

  • Take on the fact that you are responsible for where you at;
  • Recognize that denial is not your friend;
  • Realize that you are a powerful being who has the ability to make changes;
  • Be open to learning new things – this includes new ways of eating and cooking;
  • Be prepared to do more than you have done before – exercise is a vital part of all successful weight loss programs;
  • Don’t expect miracles – weight loss can & should be reasonably slow to avoid loss of muscle mass;
  • Realize that health and weight control is about a lifestyle change and not a “quick fix me up”;
  • Becoming comfortable with yourself and who you are, sometimes requires that you go through a phase of being uncomfortable whilst you learn to do things differently. Be prepared for life’s little challenges and once you have mastered the challenge congratulate yourself and move on;
  • Don’t use going on holidays or going to visit your family or friends as an excuse to revert to bad habits. Remember the lifestyle changes that you make are for life. By eating well and being fit, your holiday experiences may well be more enjoyable and less uncomfortable than those you have had before;
  • Be proud of the fact that you have made the decision to change and be prepared to tell others. Peer group or family pressure can often be a person’s down fall. Anyone who cares about you will be supportive. If family & friends cannot accept the positive changes that you are taking to  look after your health, then they have their own issues that they need to deal with – you are not the problem;
  • Self healing starts with self love and self nurturing. Put in some time to work on your emotional issues and you will find that caring for your body comes naturally;

Without addressing the above key issues, your weight loss strategy is more likely to fail. No one will tell you that this is easy. Acknowledge that the journey may be tough but the end result is well worth your effort. The reward of being fit and healthy is not just about how much better you look but also how much better you will feel.

The list of benefits is huge. Expect more energy, better sleep, better healing, more motivation and better stress control. Expect to enjoy doing things that were impossible before such as playing with the kids. Enjoy improved reproductive health & libido, elevated self esteem and a decrease in your clothes size.

You have so much to look forward to. When you change your mind, you change your life.

  1. Vivienne - July 8, 2011

    Glad to be of help.

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