Dr. Fuhrman Dr. Fuhrman

The REAL secret to losing weight

baby grasps hand of parent

I posted previously about secrets to losing weight and staying thin. Apparently, this is an interesting subject. People are finding the page by searching for weight loss secrets and there are many sites posting these "secrets".

As I wrote before, there is some truth in those secrets. There are some things that can really help you losing weight. For me, the most important help was my kitchen scale. Knowing what a reasonable portion of peanuts or chocolate was made a lot of difference. However, in the end, I think there is only one real secret to losing weight: you have to REALLY want it. If your motivation is big enough, you can do anything.

I had been fat all my life but I never had a problem with it. That changed when my daughter was born and I started reading a bit about healthy living. The things that made the most impact on me, and which prompted me to do something about my weight were:

  • The dangers of trans fats: the sites I read where a bit on the alarmist side, but they helped me realize that even though I was used to reading labels, I had no idea what I ate, and that what I put in my mouth really did make a difference for my health.
  • The fact that fat cells itself cause diseases: I used to think that the reason obesity was a health risk, was because obese people were more likely to have bad eating habits and be inactive. I learned that the fat cells itself play an important role in the development of cancer, diabetes and heart disease.
  • The seriousness of diabetes: I used to think that diabetes wasn't that big of a deal nowadays. You just needed to take some insulin, and that was it. I learned that diabetes is a leading cause of death and that diabetes has many complications.
  • The fact that obesity is as bad or worse for your health as smoking, drinking or poverty.
  • The realization that I was obese: I used to think that sure I was overweight, but it could be much worse. Other people were much fatter than me. Only 15 percent of obese people view themselves as obese.

I felt a great responsibility for my daughter. I did not want her to have a mother who died from a heart attack at age 45. I did not want her to be obese at age 10. If I did not model better behavior both were likely, so I started living healthier and I losing weight.

If you are obese and if you want to lose weight, I suggest you think seriously about your reasons for wanting to lose weight. They may seem obvious but you may discover that you have not really thought about it that much and that you are just trying to lose weight because you think you are supposed to. If you have a strong motivation, you do not need any secrets or quick fixes. Someone who aims to win an Olympic medal does not need a secret to keep training. Losing weight and living healthy are much easier if you know exactly why you are doing it. What is your motivation?

April 28, 2006