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Doesn't it just drive you nuts?!

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Old 01-23-2013, 12:32 PM   #1
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Default Doesn't it just drive you nuts?!

... When people praise the outcome and criticize the methods, I mean!

I really can't believe how many people can tell me in one breath I look amazing, and then in the other that I need to eat junk, not worry about exercise, relax on my plan, etc. As though the results happened in a vacuum and weren't the result of a conscious change of habit and a dozen small choices I make every day to support that.

It's not luck or even grueling effort that reshape a body, people - it is dedication and consistency over time. Sheesh! And yet saying as much makes some folks awfully defensive, doesn't it? That disconnect about healthy behaviors in our society is extremely prevalent, and the on/off diet mentality is mostly to blame. I know this, but it still drives me a bit batty when people ask how I did it or how I maintain, even pregnant, and then promptly agree with me while simultaneously pushing sugar cookies my way
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Old 01-23-2013, 12:39 PM   #2
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People are especially critical of my food beliefs when it comes to animals fats. My blood work is fabulous and my dental health is great. However- people are so programmed with the Standard American Diet that they will say, "Just wait- your time will come." ::sigh::
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Old 01-23-2013, 12:46 PM   #3
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It amazes me the things that come out of people's mouths. It makes me wonder if I do stupid things like that without knowing but I don't think I do.

I have been asked if I starve myself, why I don't drink alcohol anymore, how much have I lost/have left to lose, etc. And...2 different people went to my HUSBAND when they didn't like the answers (as in, I didn't reply) they got from me. He's cool and just blows them off but seriously, MYOB!

And these are the questions from the aquaintances (not friends, not family, just people I "know").

I wish people were as concerned about me when I was packing on the pounds...
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Old 01-23-2013, 12:58 PM   #4
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No one in my entire life has seen me at a healthy weight (have been 300 since beginning of HS) and I'm finally losing it all. Only a few people know how I'm doing it and I intend to keep it that way because I don't want to go into all the details that everyone always asks and then be criticized for how I lost it. Almost 80 lbs down so far and I have been really busy so I haven't seen anyone outside of my family yet. In a way I'm not looking forward to everyone finally seeing me because of all the dreaded questions, prying and speculating!

I have a birthday party this weekend; it's all family or family of family that i haven't seen in a year. I'm not too worried about it though. My final goal weight "reveal" to friends will be at a friend's wedding this summer. I think I might update Facebook first though and get some of the craziness out of the way!

Long way of saying, I agree, everyone should just be happy for you then mind their own business!
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Old 01-23-2013, 01:17 PM   #5
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This used to drive me bonkers in the beginning but maybe I'm just used to it now. When I first started my diet, I would turn down alcohol and birthday cupcakes and everyone kept telling me that I needed to do everything in moderation. If one more person told me that I could eat anything in moderation I was going to lose it. Everyone was giving me advice on what I needed to do. I'm glad that I was able to ignore them and stick to my plan.

Now that I've lost so much weight, everyone has started asking me what I'm doing and they defer to my expertise. They don't want to listen to what I say because I have completely given up sugar. I don't drink alcohol, I don't eat grains, nuts, pasta, bread, potatoes...I'm being too extreme. That's fine. I'm not trying to convert anyone to my way of eating but this is what has been working for me and this is what has kept me from falling off the wagon. Because there's no sugar in my system, I don't physically crave it and that's how I'd like to keep it.

So now I just nod and smile at people and keep it moving.
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Old 01-23-2013, 01:23 PM   #6
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Yes! I think a lot of us have experienced this! My Grandmother, bless her heart, is a food pusher. She lived through a serious famine in her childhood in an internment camp and just wants to cook and watch people eat. She acknowledges the fact that I need to lose weight and is my biggest cheerleader in the process, but she also thinks I can do this while eating pies every weekend.
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Old 01-23-2013, 01:27 PM   #7
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Yep, yep, yep.

A few years ago, I lost ~50 lbs calorie counting and exercising. No one wanted to hear "eat less, move more" - they wanted to know the "secret trick" I must have used. (and of course, I gained it back when I started eating more and moving less)

A couple of years ago, I lost 65 lbs on the Dukan Diet - something even I consider pretty extreme (low fat, very low carb, a list of 100 foods and you don't eat anything not on the list). But when they wanted to know how, and I told them, I got "oh, that's too extreme, it's not healthy, I couldn't ever do that" etc. (and of course I gained back 60 of it when I stopped doing it)

The bottom line is that everyone seems to think there is some magic effortless way to lose weight and any explanation that includes some actual concrete method and hard work - whatever it may be - is just too hard for them to attempt themselves.
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Old 01-23-2013, 01:35 PM   #8
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I try not to talk about it. Especially not in detail. On a first inquiry, maybe, "Thank you. It's a lot of work, but worth it!"

If they ask for HOW I'm doing it, I might say, "I've cut back on sweets and such" or "I'm eating more veggies and less junk", or even "I'm reducing calories (or watching my portions) and making healthier choices."

They don't want to hear that my "healthy choices" include cutting way back on sugar and starches, or that "reducing calories" can include intermittent fasting or that "less junk" includes their precious 'healthy whole grains'. I don't go into the details that I know the Common Knowledge will fight against. I don't want to bother.
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Old 01-23-2013, 01:54 PM   #9
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And one of my co-workers brought me rum cake and white chocolate covered pretzel clusters for the holidays. It was a nice gesture and the person I gave them to really enjoyed them.
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:40 PM   #10
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Arctic Mama - you hit it on the head when you said, "That disconnect about healthy behaviors in our society is extremely prevalent, and the on/off diet mentality is mostly to blame."

I think people my age (over 60) are less apt to react the way you said because we grew up in a world where fast food was not on every corner and prepared food in the grocery store was limited. AND (the biggest part, I think,) most of our mothers were home all day doing what moms in the 50s did - clean, cook, take care of kids. My background is not of being fat. That only came when I lived on my own and all that crap was available all of a sudden. I was waiting in an airport recently for a much delayed plane home and got talking with a woman about my age who was waiting for the same flight. We had over 3 hours to kill and spent the time having a salad and talking about everything under the sun. Diet came up. I told her I'd lost 90 pounds. She asked how and I said, "Nothing special - I started exercising and I just cut out the crap and ate the things we all know we should in actual recommended portions." Her answer sums up what people my age think, in my opinion. She said, "As much as I know you're right, that wasn't what I wanted to hear."

Those of us who are 20 years younger than me fall into a group where lots of moms worked and convenience food was becoming more readily available, as well as fast food. And those of us in our 20s (I wouldn't want to be that age today for all the tea in China) were raised on fast food in a society that is 30% obese. The opinions / reactions of each age are different, I think.

I've said from the beginning of this that I truly believed it was easier for someone my age to lose weight because the "norm" when we were growing up was that most people were of average weight. I can honestly say that no one my age has told me I need to eat junk. It's been suggested that I could loosen up a bit, but that's as far as it goes.

I have gotten lots of advice from overweight friends and friends of friends, though, that drives me nuts. I just said this a few minutes ago in a different thread. Two sisters of a friend (both very overweight) gave me a whole list of things I should do differently if I wanted to succeed at weight loss (at a point in time where I had lost about 75 pounds in 7 months) - from cutting out salad dressing if I'm going to eat a salad every day to getting more heavily into weight lifting to any number of other bits of advice - while they ate an entire bag of chips and a 16 oz container of dip while we talked. At the end of the conversation all I could think of to say was, "I'll continue to do what I've been doing. Let me know how your plan works for you."

As my airport friend said, no one wants to hear that exercise and "proper" diet are the key ingredients to losing and keeping off the weight. We are bombarded with information that makes it look like there are magic pills and machines out there that will make it easy. I had someone say to me once that they were disgusted with WW because once you went off, it didn't work anymore. Duh.

I want to tell you how much I enjoy your posts in general. You are very insightful and always make great points on how to be (become) (continue to be) successful at this health game. You're wise beyond your years.

Lin
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:57 PM   #11
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You know what people REALLY don't want to hear? that fat can be OK. They are all, "Oh your cholesterol!" It's perfect, thank you very much.

I had NO IDEA that the biggest problem with cholesterol was a sedentary lifestyle. I even eat the crispy skin on the chicken now if I want to (have to count the calories in). I don't use skim milk for my coffee, but full milk (and count the calories).

Now MOST of my fats are from nuts - almonds and peanuts amd then olive oil, but I eat quite a bit of fat to keep me satiated.

People have it burned into their heads that fats are bad. No.... too much sugar/simple carbs and sitting on your butt are what is driving up your cholesterol!
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Old 01-23-2013, 08:11 PM   #12
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You gotta love the fat = fat myth. I remember I was still living at home when my mom went through the "fat free" stage. She would eat entire boxes of various fat free treats in one sitting. I remember thinking "ermm that can't be right". She ended up putting on alot of weight during that time period....
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Old 01-23-2013, 08:38 PM   #13
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Thanks Lin!

Definitely echoing the sentiments on fat, ladies. The best discovery I think I've had on this journey is that fats what is required to keep me satiated and comfortable - it's the sugar and starch I can't abide! And activity does more for lowering my insulin and giving me energy (and a more normal digestive process, circadian rhythms, you name it!) than just about anything short of the basic template of my diet.

But even then, so many of these things vary by the individual. If I could drive anything home to the people I encounter regarding weight and health, it is that consistency and a long view is what it takes - not perfection, no magic bullet, not whatever some guru is schilling. Yes, for me the knowledge of how insulin works and where my body isn't behaving properly in that regard was huuuuge. But ANY positive changes permanently undertaken for health are beneficial, and mean a whole lot more than people give them credit for.

As our lovely Kaplods says, she's failed her way down 100 pounds. Me too, and trying to get across to people (even my own mother, who is well educated on diet and knows better!) that slow scale progress or just 'not gaining' is an immense victory seems like climbing Everest some days. Massive results, instantaneous success, and a definite end date before resuming normal munching seems to be the attitude du jour among my age group, and as Lin pointed out the older set might know better, but doesn't want to hear it.

I suppose this is where we just have to put our heads down and keep succeeding. People argue less with success, I've noticed, even if they don't like the means by which we achieved it
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Old 01-23-2013, 09:17 PM   #14
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I had similiar thoughts on and off about this most of last week. I thought about how I was put on Herbalife at 8, how my mom went through the if it's sugar/fat/whatever current trend free she can have as much as she wants phase, how when my dad had his 1st heart attack, we cleaned out all the fat, we trimmed it all off of already lean cuts of meat, but then we used more of something else to replace that taste, that mouth feel, then in an hour or two felt the need to eat MORE. More anything. How I wish I could make people understand if they take fat out, chances are they added sugar, if they took sugar out, they probably added fat, if they took sunshine out, they probably added rain. That we have to know the different food industry names for sugars, fat, the different ways they're marketed and how they WILL affect your body the same as drinking it straight from the source.

Unfortunately I realise, all I can do is keep chugging along, and when someone asks, just be honest, "I decided to go back to a more caveman style eating, I try to avoid anything that showed up in a box and make sure my cart doesn't visit anything but the outer aisles of the grocery store, produce, meats, dairy, checkout."
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Old 01-24-2013, 08:59 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Devoncroix View Post
You gotta love the fat = fat myth. I remember I was still living at home when my mom went through the "fat free" stage. She would eat entire boxes of various fat free treats in one sitting. I remember thinking "ermm that can't be right". She ended up putting on alot of weight during that time period....
I did the extremely low-fat thing for a long time. Pritikin and others like it. I didn't eat whole boxes of low-fat cookies; I cooked whole grain and veggies. But I was NEVER satisfied. I ate and ate and was grumpier and grumpier. My beloved (and long-suffering) husband calls it "The year S was a total witch".

Now I eat less food, but much more fat. It satisfies me even more than volumetric food does. My lipid profile is amazing. And when I stick to my plan, I slowly but surely lose weight.
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