Michelle LaBrosse, CCPM, PMP, PMI-ACP, RYT
Searching for my truth high and low.
I get bombarded daily with different information on what is a healthy weight. My dietitian Kate just emailed me a recent article on how even thinking you are over weight increased your weight. And I’ve read articles recently on how being over weight is actually the healthier state of affairs, especially in the rampant cancer environment we live in. My own personal experience with this is having had a mother who was petite her whole life and worked it hard only to die prematurely of brain cancer vs. a father who had a more cavalier approach to his diet, was what conventional wisdom would have us believe was over weight most of his adult life and is still going strong well into his 80’s.
So I’m wondering how do I sort out what is true for ME? In this pursuit to love myself more, I am going to start to base it on how does the information I’m receiving make me feel. Do I feel more loved or do I feel shamed, judged and less than? If I feel more loved, then the information is the truth for me. As do we really know anyhow with all this contradictory information that gets released almost daily?
The prevailing “wisdom” is that shaming people motivates them. But it has never motivated me and I’m not sure if it has ever motivated anyone else either. What it does do though is make me feel bad about myself where my go to behavior is to comfort myself with some type of starchy gooey, sugary comfort food. PLUS, if someone is threatening to make me go without something I love, it makes sense I’m going to crave what they are telling me needs to go away. I just don’t find the value in the whole body shaming movement with weight loss. And thank god neither does my dietician as she encourages me to indulge myself from time to time. And surprise surprise surprise, I just have not been that inclined to do so. And if I do, I just have a little – I don’t secretly scarf down a whole package of oreos.
In my last encounter with a western medicine doctor, I went to see an endocrinology surgeon about getting my adrenal tumor removed as there was a theory that that was what had caused my weight issue, Well he looks at me and says – “Lady you are really healthy. I mean really healthy. I see people in my office every day who are close to death and you are no where close to death. We’ll run all the tests on your tumor but I’m telling you this – I don’t think it needs to come out. We don’t really know about what is a healthy weight and I think your biggest issue is you need to learn how to accept yourself.” I felt so great after that visit – and instead of going home, feeling bad about myself and reaching for a cookie, I went home and rode my bike.
So in this habit change to love myself more, I’m going to tap more into what is my truth based on how I feel about what I’m reading or hearing from others. If I feel shamed, bad, like I am somehow wrong or less than, or embarrassed, then it is not my truth. When I feel loved, expanded, excited and good about myself – it’s the truth for me.
Kate’s comment: I’m glad that you brought this up – while weight is a predictor of future health and can be a precursor to health issues, there are other parameters that are more telling of future health. For example, labs like hemoglobin A1C (to see how sugary your blood is), cholesterol labs, blood pressure, and functional health are clearer predictors of future disease status, like heart disease or diabetes. I have a feeling this is what your doctor was talking about when he was describing your health. Shaming and scaring is no fun – plus I get the sense that most of us are rebellious and like to break rules that are set for us. No rules to be broken = better compliance.
Michelle’s Reply – I don’t even like my own rules sometimes. Rules feel constricting rather than expansive but isn’t a rule not to have any rules a rule? Maybe the rule needs to be no vegetables – you can only eat cookies. Then eating vegetables and not eating the cookies would be breaking the rules.