Posted in Blog Posts, Featured

My struggle with body image – Part 6

Date: April 22nd 2019

I’m baaaaaack!
We left off in January with me starting my individualized program with Brandy.  As I explained in my earlier blogs, I was very resistant to doing anything that reminded me of my “old ways” of dieting.  I did not want to count calories, weigh food, deprive myself, label foods “good” or bad”, or weigh myself constantly.  I did not want to judge my day (or my character) based on how well I had “stuck to my diet.”  

Brandy took this all into consideration and was able to devise a nutrition program, despite my “limits.”  By the end of March, I had lost 19 pounds and I am maintaining that weight loss.

Learning about what my body needs for nutrition, the role macronutrients play, as well as timing of meals and snacks, has made this journey much easier than the deprivation diets of my past.

I can honestly say, I am able to practice my “program” at restaurants, parties, and people’s homes without any awkwardness or regret.

However, the last few months have not just been about losing weight.  I have become even more aware of my self-talk and how easy it can be to see weight loss as the end all of accomplishment.  Many times, I hear clients describe how happy they will be when they reach their weight loss goals.  I occasionally found myself determining my accomplishments/happiness based on the scale.

Maybe it’s my age (~65) or maybe it’s my long career as a therapist, but I’m convinced happiness comes from within and it is based on what we tell ourselves.

If we tell ourselves we won’t be happy until we lose X amount of weight, we will probably be right. What if we were more proactive in our happiness and consciously looked at all we do, not just our weight.  I recently heard an Oprah podcast that resonated with me and I would like to share it with you.  (See link below)

 Until then, be kind to yourself and let’s look at all our positives.

– Marlene Sexton

Posted in Blog Posts

My struggle with body image – Part 5

By Marlene Sexton LMFT

Date: January 30th, 2019

I left off last time telling you about my past decision to lose some weight. I restricted calories, avoided fat, skipped meals, deprived myself of tasty foods, and expected fast results. Never mind that the results were temporary AND unhealthy! Most, if not all, of my weight loss in those days was water and muscle.  

Refusing to go back to my old dieting ways, I now promise myself:

I will not count calories or points, 
I will not weigh myself several times a day, 
I will not deprive myself of certain foods, and 
I will not beat myself up for any “failures.”  

So, how am I going to drop some pounds?  

Well, I challenged any thoughts long ago that being overweight was a personality flaw. I dismiss any notion that heavy people are just undisciplined or “lazy”, and I know that any quick weight-loss program that promises long-term results is a lie. But, despite years of on and off dieting, I knew nothing at that time about obesity as a disease.

Fortunately, as a partner and behavioral therapist at Three Health, I have access to Medical Director Brandy Wiltermuth’s medical expertise. I already knew that my old way of dieting did not work to sustain weight loss, and most of what I thoughtI knew was old and faulty information at that!  

Brandy has the courage to take on the diet industry and tell the truth: The only way to lose weight and KEEP IT OFF is through individualized, medically-driven, holistic programs that treat the mind, the body, and the spirit. Everyone is different, and every patient requires an individualized program based on his or her personal medical conditions and profile. 

“Dieting” is not a one-size-fits-all program!  

Brandy’s experience in the science of weight loss is deep and insightful. She drew charts to help me understand how macronutrients work in mybody, making it easy for me to understand what works and what doesn’t work for mybody. There is a big difference between being told what I need to eat rather than what I can’t, and Brandy designed an easy-to-follow nutritional plan for me to follow. 

I was adamant that I love my social lifestyle and traveling, and she listened. In fact, I have no desire to curtail any activities; therefore, she has helped make it easy to go to restaurants and friends’ homes for dinner.

I was also adamant that my “dietary needs” not be obvious, and they aren’t. I have been following this plan (not to the letter and, yet, no guilt), and I have lost about eight (8) pounds in a month. 

While my “self-care” program worked for many years, time does not stand still. Just as my thinking had changed over the years, so had my body. Again, excess weight is not a personality flaw!  

As a partner at Three Health, and by following Brandy’s guidelines, I truly understand that everyone’s life situation is totally unique, which is why it is important to understand each patient’s lifestyle and situation. What I learned first-hand is that each person’s bio-metrics, medical test results, and medical condition play a huge part in healthy, sustainable weight loss.  

I don’t ever want to go back to the days where I put myself last or feel my needs are not important. As I have said before, I vowed I would never treat myself the way I did in my teens and twenties. I changed my self-talk, which changed my self-esteem, and now I practice self-care in all areas by including this new way of eating. 

I am taking care of myself by getting the right medical and professional advice for myweight issue because this nutritional program is unlike any “diet” I have ever been on. My health is one of my most valuable assets (as your health is to you), and I feel I am protecting it by losing weight in a healthy way, both physically and emotionally. You can do it too. 

Until next time, take care of yourself and yourbody’s needs,

Marlene Sexton LMFT