My relationship with food evolved over the years. As a young girl, I found a great deal of comfort in food. After the death of my mom in 1994, and then again in 98 with Grandmas loss, I took in food as a friend and consoler. It was comforting and always there. While grieving all the loss and change in my life, it was my one constant. After all, it is the center of so many activities. When with family, friends, or just by myself food was always a familiar presence. Others around me seemed to feel the same way. It was normal, right? When you are happy, EAT! Grieving, EAT more! Celebrating a special occasion, eat all your favorite foods in one day!
The 2 years following my mother’s death I gained about 30 pounds. Here I was, headed into high school finding comfort in food but shame with how my body looked. I can remember coming down with a cold, going to the doctor where I had to be weighed and feeling shocked and numb by the number I saw on the scale. Mortified and embarrassed, I decided my relationship with food had to change. I made it my mission to get educated and take action.
Even with my new found determination and recently acquired knowledge, it was a constant battle. I remember trying to cut calories by skipping lunch but then pigging out after school. I tried dexatrim diet pills sold at my local K-Mart retailer. Oh and lets not forget the tasty shakes from slim-fast that made me just want fries and a burger to go with it. I continued a low-fat, high carb diet for the most part. It was the way of the time. All the health magazines and dieting groups were advocating it. I ate fruit loops and skim milk for Breakfast. A can of regular soda for lunch. A ham and cheese sandwich with rice crispy treat as a snack and maybe a small plate of whatever we were having for dinner. That, for me, usually contained meat and some other form of starch. I felt famished or sluggish often but thought that was the price I had to pay in order to achieve my goals.
Eventually, I found the gym and some minor success with weight management but more importantly community and stress relief. I picked up some good habits and advice at the gym. I learned about the importance of veggies as well as how regular exercise was key to maintaining a healthy fit body.
Finishing up high school I was in good place overall , exercising and avoiding most junk food but then college and all was lost for a while….
In my next post I’ll take you back to my “freshmen 15” experience and introduction to low-carb dieting.