I was introduced to the lows of being overweight on my first day at school. During recess, another kid in the playground called me fat. I was really upset. I had no idea that I was overweight until that moment. I was five years old. That memory has stayed with me ever since.
In my later years, I used to jump on the scales and tie my self-esteem to the number that appeared. Of course, the only number that was acceptable was on verge of being underweight. Some months I would feel great and others I would want to hide from the world. The only thing that used to matter to me was the number on the scales. It was all I could focus on.
I’ve tried so many different diets. And you know what, they all worked. I always chose the diet based on weight loss, the faster the better. Every diet recommended that I eat meat every 2 to 3 hours. There were some vegetables and never any fruit. They were high protein, low carb diets. And they got me where I thought I wanted to go.
Each time I lost the desired amount of weight, I would feel fantastic. I would pull out my skinny wardrobe and wear it with pride. When I thought I’d unlocked the secrets of weight loss, the inevitable happened. I lost my way. I would start to ‘treat’ myself to things that were off the menu. I couldn’t sustain it and drifted back into my old habits. Little did I know or understand how harmful eating so much meat would be. Before I knew it I’d put the weight back on, with interest!
I would put my skinny wardrobe into storage and pull out my fat wardrobe. Down my self-esteem would plummet. This entire cycle would take between a twelve to eighteen months to occur. Then you guessed it; it would start all over again. I had been in this cycle for 25 years.
It wasn’t until I had a life changing experience that I changed my focus. After having two strokes at 39 my focus shifted my focus from weight loss to health. I read some pretty sobering statistics about stroke. Three people in every five who experience stroke will pass away in the following year. One will have another stroke and the last person will be okay.
I desperately wanted to be the person who was going to be okay.
Jurgen, my husband had been introduced to green smoothies a couple of weeks prior to my strokes. We had just started making them at home the week before our lives changed forever. Jurgen would bring green smoothie into the hospital for me. He would put it into the fridge and reminded me to drink it. He would pour me glass after glass when he came to visit.
The doctors could not tell me what caused the strokes. This changed my priorities very quickly. I threw out the weight loss diets and looked for ways to be healthy.
That was all that mattered if I wanted to live.
The green smoothies then started a chain reaction. We started introducing more and more healthy foods into our diet. I looked for foods to rebuild my brain connections and give me energy. I discovered raw vegetarian foods and Quinoa. The taste for sugar, fried foods and meat disappeared. I became an accidental vegetarian. I wanted my brain and my body to heal. Most importantly, I didn’t want to fear stroke ever again.
But then the most amazing thing happened. When I focused on being healthy, my weight took care of it’s self. I found my perfect healthy weight. There’s no skinny or fat wardrobe anymore, just lovely clothes that fit perfectly. I’ve just celebrated three extra years of life after the strokes. I’ve never looked better or been healthier. It’s such a freeing experience to know how to manage my weight… and it’s delicious! On a personal note, I’ll never ask again if my bum looks big in this. I know its perfect just the way it is. I will never again tie my self esteem to a number. Not my age, my bank account and definitely not my weight.
Focus on making healthy choices and watch the magic happen…
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Wishing you lots of health, love & happiness,