The Wellbeing of Maintaining a Healthy Weight

Here’s a confession, I love food, I’m an emotional eater and I’ve struggled with my weight for as long as I can remember. Before I was married I always had said, ‘when I get married, I don’t want to be one of those people who gain weight and just let myself go!’ I wanted my wedding dress to still fit on our one year anniversary but within four months of being married, Matt and I had both gained 10lbs. When I discovered this in early January I decided that this couldn’t go on any longer, I needed to do something to change before it became 20lbs, so I joined Weight Watchers! The $50 a month to join was a stretch on our newly wed budget but we found ways to make it work. Now, looking back, it was a great three month investment on my health and still continues to be today. Within six weeks I made my goal and then for six weeks I had to maintain my goal, weighing in every week for three months. Now, almost three years later, as a ‘Weight Watchers Lifetime Member’, I weigh in every month for accountability and only once have not been in my goal range (which means I had to pay $19 and go back the following week for another weigh in, which frustrated me enough to never let that happen again!). My wedding dress fit on our first anniversary and I’m confident it would even still fit today!

The day I became a Weight Watchers Lifetime Member

The day I became a Weight Watchers Lifetime Member

I’m a big believer in knowing who you are, feeling good in your skin and being healthy.  What do I mean by that? I mean that often in life we get way over busy, stuck in a rut, depressed, frustrated, over worked and just don’t have time… Completely losing time for our wellbeing and then we ‘let ourselves go’. Circumstances may happen on the short term but when it becomes a long term thing, I believe our wellbeing begins to suffer, our health suffers and ultimately how we feel suffers. I don’t believe that what the scale says defines who we are whatsoever, but I do think it’s important to take care of ourselves and do our best to maintain good health. From experience, I also believe that feeling good about yourself and maintaining good health/a healthy weight deeply effects our wellbeing.

If this is something you struggle with, here are a few things you can do.

  1. Recognize it! It’s ok, you’re not alone. According to Forbes, Canada ranks 35 on a 2007 list of fattest countries, with 61.1% of people being overweight or obese. This is a real struggle in our world and big health risk for many today. If you’re not sure if you’re overweight or not, you can check your BMI here.
  2. Set some SMART goals for yourself:
    • Specific – target a specific area for improvement. For example, how you eat, how often you exercise, etc.
    • Measurable – quantify or at least suggest an indicator of progress. I need to lose 10lbs, 20lbs, 50lbs (my mom just lost 50lbs and feels great- you can too!)
    • Assignable – specify who will do it. You! When?
    • Realistic – state what results can realistically be achieved.
    • Time-related – specify when the result(s) can be achieved.
  3. Get accountability: For me, I joined Weight Watchers, which could also work for you or could not. Maybe you need a health coach, a personal trainer or a friend/family member to help you. Accountability for me has been a great way to meet my goals and stay on track… for years now!

My mom has always said, “Daria, if you don’t take care of yourself, no one else will!”. That statement has bugged me a little because I do believe in many ways my friends, family and Matt ‘take care of me’… But reality is if I’m not taking care of myself in making healthy choices, no one else can do it for me. It’s like telling a smoker to quit smoking who doesn’t want to. Some days I need to push myself to go for a run, hit the gym or say no to a meal that isn’t good for me in ways that no one else could influence. After a long, hard day, no one can push me to go for a run on my treadmill, not even Matt. So what I think my mom means is that if I’m not making the choice to take care of my health/myself, no one else can make it for me… and same goes for you!

Drinking Green

My friend Catherine and I have been talking about getting together for a juice date since I got my juicer in May, last night we finally did (thanks Catherine for being the inspiration of this blog!)! I bought the Omega slow masticating juicer with my birthday money this year and love it. It also helped me make a bushel of tomato sauce/salsa and I can even make homemade pasta with it, which is so easy and delicious! Although I go through seasons of juicing more than others, I think it was money well spent.

There is a lot of discussion about what’s actually better for you, juicing or blending? When you juice you remove all the fibre in the vegetable or fruit which leaves you with pure juice. When you blend, the fibre is all blended up into the smoothie, which is more filling and takes longer to digest. I think both are actually really great and important. The benefit of juice is that it instantly goes into your blood stream (because there is nothing to digest), providing you with a lot of amazing nutrients. You need to be careful juicing fruit though, because that’s in instant spike of sugar/insulin in your body which isn’t good! Veggies are the way to go.

There are a couple things I remember from the first book I ever read on health: 1. Don’t consumed bleached sugar or flour because apparently they use benzoyl peroxide, literally the bleach that is also in acne face wash. That disgusted me. 2. If you’re going to supplement your diet with anything, the two most important things are liquid greens and fish oil. So when I’m not juicing I try to always have my greens. They take some getting used to but well worth it for your health!

Catherine and her Juice

Catherine and her Juice

The powdered greens I drink

The powdered greens I drink

According to Dr. Mercola, these are the top 3 reasons to juice. I’d also add that greens and fresh veggie juice are great for detoxing your body.

1. Juicing helps you absorb all the nutrients from the vegetables. This is important because most of us have impaired digestion as a result of making less-than-optimal food choices over many years. This limits your body’s ability to absorb all the nutrients from the vegetables. Juicing will help to “pre-digest” them for you, so you will receive most of the nutrition, rather than having it go down the toilet.

2. Juicing allows you to consume an optimal amount of vegetables in an efficient manner. If you are a carb type, you should eat one pound of raw vegetables per 50 pounds of body weight per day. Some people may find eating that many vegetables difficult, but it can be easily accomplished with a quick glass of vegetable juice.

3. You can add a wider variety of vegetables in your diet. Many people eat the same vegetable salads every day. This violates the principle of regular food rotation and increases your chance of developing an allergy to a certain food. But with juicing, you can juice a wide variety of vegetables that you may not normally enjoy eating whole.