For the past 4+ years, I have struggled with gaining weight.
Well, no. I haven’t struggled with it. I have just done it well.
What I have struggled with is the STOPPING of the gaining of weight! I have claimed the entire time that I have eaten 0 to 5 relatively consistently and nevertheless gained weight.
But…is this true? I know I haven’t intentionally been dishonest, but have I been deceived? Is it possible that my “slide” was so subtle that I am actually a long way away from a true 0 and a true 5?
“0 to 5” is what Thin Within refers to as eating between the parameters of physical hunger–a 0–and physical “just enough-ness”–which is a 5. I have eaten 0 to 5 since 2000. Eating 0 to 5, in 2006 and 2007 I released 100 pounds of weight eating foods of all kinds and stayed a healthy size eating the same way until a health crisis in 2014. I grew dangerously thin at that time. But for 8 years prior to that, I ate when I was hungry, stopped when I was no longer hungry and went to God for all the other things that had previously driven me to food. It worked! Even if I ate french fries, chicken strips, pizza or ice cream!
In 2014, the docs in the hospital told me I needed to eat more and gain weight. What person who has ever struggled with over-eating and weight-gain issues hasn’t dreamed of being told that! I guess I took them seriously enough that I followed doctor’s orders and I have never looked back!
That was six years ago. I think I have that one down….
Now? My joints ache from carrying around even more weight. How can I continue to claim I am eating “virtuously?” Have I been deceiving myself or has my weight gain really been attributable to my totally wrecked gut biome and subsequent malabsorption?
Does 0 to 5 eating–eating according to the signals that God placed in my body to work naturally–NOT work for me during this season? Really?
What is true?
My functional medicine practitioner has challenged me to stop taking antibiotics so the supplements I am on might start healing my gut. The thought was that if I can’t absorb nutrients (which we know I can’t) it might be my body thinks it is starving and so it is holding on to fat. There is NO doubt that it is holding on to fat. And I have loved the idea of being able to blame all this weight gain on something like that. It is much more pleasant than thinking that it is because I am eating too much.
But is it because I am eating too much? Or is it because something in my body is broken? Is it because of something that I can’t fix? Or is it something that I have the power to change? Have I deceived myself about how little I have been eating?
It is time to find out.
So, I have started an experiment. I am on day 6 right now. At the end of 30 days, I will know the truth. If I lose weight, great. That is awesome and I will know that I have “fudged” my hunger/satisfied signals (at which time I will “observe and correct” to be equipped for victory going forward).
If, after 30 days of this experiment, I don’t lose weight, the data I am gathering and recording will tell me definitively that it is due to the malabsorption issues and other things I haven’t been able to address on my own. I will have evidence to take back to my doctor. (Not sure what we will do about it then, but at least we will know for sure that I can point my finger at something other than me being a greedy eater.)
Want to hear about my experiment and the results as I go along? I will share about it here between now and July 7th.
The adventure is under way. For the record, I am eating 0 to 5, but really clamping down and scrutinizing carefully what a 0 and what a 5 is. No more rose-colored glasses!