I won’t bore you with how many diets I have been on or even how many times I have gone up or down 30-40 lbs because that is history. There was a pivotal news story I remember a few years ago about The Biggest Loser Contestants and how they could not keep the weight off because their metabolisms had slowed so much and they had to eat very little and exercise for hours just to maintain the weight they lost. That was fine when they were on the show because they had a lot of help but out in the real world that not not doable. That is when I got really discouraged about every keeping weight off that I lost: I kind of gave up on dieting. I was doing everything right, eating low fat everything, exercising a ton and still barely losing anything and starving. Last year I just gave up and still exercised but not as intensely but had a stressful job so kept eating and the weight went up and up.
Then in August 2017, I saw a Facebook ad by Brooke Castillo, a life coach. She wrote a book called: “If I’m so smart, why can’t I lose weight?” and I felt like she was talking to me. She talked about how there were several factors that created over hunger and over desire including our cultural and unproven scientific beliefs, psychological, neurobiological and hormonal. I was most interested in the hormones since I was menopausal but all of these factors are very important in weight loss and maintenance. There are 3 main hormones that influence weight gain and loss. Insulin in the most important. We are overweight or obese because we have too much insulin. Whenever insulin is elevated the body stores fat and cannot use it for fuel. There are more people with diabetes and insulin resistance because we consume foods with high sugar and starch content. There are 2 other hormones that are affected by insulin, leptin and ghrelin which have to do with feeling of fullness and hunger. Everything made sense to me until she started talking about what worked in terms of weight loss for her and her clients: Giving up sugar and flour, I thought she was crazy; how in this society can you not eat sugar and flour, it is in everything.