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Talking about weight loss

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

When I see someone that I haven't seen for a few months, I feel odd if they mention that I lost weight or if they don't. I find it's best if I know them well to mention it myself. If I know them very well, I might say that I started to lose weight due to a family problem that triggered anxiety and prevented me from eating a few days. Even with family, I don't talk about the problem itself since it's upsetting and people not involved don't want to hear about it. They make a comment to the effect that they don't want to talk about what happened in September and I'm fine with that.

People that don't know me well enough to know a very personal family problem might be told that I started working out at the Y or that Prozac causes me to lose weight. I think both the exercise and the Prozac caused me to continue to lose weight since most times it has been much harder to lose weight. In the past, I have tried to lose weight and made diet and exercise changes and lost so little that I didn't even see the effort as a diet. I feel better when I exercise and eat less junk food even if that causes no change or a very small change on the scale.

Since losing weight in my case seems like something that is both unintentional and intentional, I find myself feeling uncomfortable about it. When people that know me well don't comment, I feel like they don't care since they must know that I had been depressed over the situation in September. Of course, I wouldn't expect people that don't know me well to comment so I take their comments as a compliment. I don't feel like it's a compliment since my weight loss was triggered by an anxiety causing situation.

I find that it's very difficult for me to lose weight in most cases. This time and the previous time that I had lost significant weight were triggered by very stressful situations. Since I feel losing weight is something that just beyond my control, it's hard to feel good about it.

I don't like that the doctor that I'm seeing for anxiety doesn't show concern about my weight loss. He has said that I shouldn't concern myself about it unless I became underweight. I find fault with this since BMI isn't a good measure of health on the individual basis. I could be losing muscle, bones and other internal organs and still be in the 'normal' weight range.

Granted, I have a bit of fat on my body. People don't go from healthy to unhealthy at a marker of BMI 18.5. I could become unhealthy at a much higher weight. BMI gives a large range of normal which people say accounts for bone structure, gender, age, etc. However, since people vary in bone density, muscle density, bone structure and so on, healthy or ideal weight is very individual.

I've had been on diets as a teen and I was treated like my body structure was an excuse why I couldn't get my weight down to 110, my doctor's goal, or 112, a diet program's goal. My health was reversely effected once my weight fell below 122, I stopped having periods. I don't have them now (at any weight) since I'm in menopause, but I was sixteen then. At sixteen, I had bad stomach pain. I was cold all the time. I felt constantly sick. I looked very thin. Once I gained weight, I felt much better and my periods returned.

Since my bone structure has changed with age, I don't know at what weight I would be so thin that my immune system would work poorly allowing me to get sick more often. I do suppose that weight would be much higher than 103, BMI 18.5. It could even be higher than 110, BMI 20. Being thinner isn't always good even if one isn't quote underweight. Underweight for my body isn't underweight for yours. I suppose I could write for hours about why I feel uncomfortable talking about weight loss and weight in general.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    My starting weight at SP was 148.
    BMI 25 for my height 137.
    Current weight 122. BMI 22.3
    2799 days ago
    Weight is a difficult topic in any situation. I like StriveOne's suggestion about "working hard at improving my health."
    2799 days ago
    That was thoughtful.

    I know that BMI is not the the best measure of fitness, but I would be very happy to have the one you mentioned when you started your SparkPage. Sometimes it's just as hard to get enough good nutrition as it is to limit the bad stuff. Still it sounds like you are at a point where there is a some leeway as long as you keep exercising and make sure you fuel yourself with a balanced diet. You'll probably have to put a lot of planning and effort into getting it right when you start your big hike.

    When the issue of my weight comes up in conversation, I'm most comfortable saying that I am working hard at improving my health, and I am very happy with the results. Whether I get into detail after that depends on my assessment of the other parties' genuine interest or possibility of their benefiting from hearing about my experience.
    2799 days ago
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