Weight Loss Woes for Catholic – 5 Tips for real Weight Loss Part 5

Weight Loss Woes for Catholics

by Rita Davidson

Do you struggle with weight loss ? Have you tried to lose weight with no luck?
Have you heard fellow people, even Catholics make snide remarks about your weight?
Have you heard other Catholics make jokes about how your weight is from the sin of gluttony?

Oh yes, even Catholics can be most unkind.

I have heard remarks how we should feel guilty about our weight, and recently snide remarks about overweight wives, from a traditional catholic radio show. Such comments really make me wonder. And this was a show about charity no less. The blindness of some people!

Have you tried every weight loss idea out there?

But, your weight is still there no matter what you try to stay ahead of it?

I hear ya.

The Virtue of being Overweight

Well, I’ve struggled with weight all my life too. I know what it’s like. Been there, done that. Am I self conscious about my weight? Sure. But what really angers me is to see the mistruths out there and to see others hurting because of it.

Does God really think it‘s a sin to be overweight? Honestly? If you are eating three meals like everyone else, is being overweight a sin? Heavens NO.

If any Catholic websites try dump this one on you, get away from them. And fast.

GUILT is not something that should be thrown on someone with a misplaced moral guidepost. It is not a sin to be fat!

Do you think God looks upon you with disgust? Heavens no!

What saints were there that were overweight? St. Thomas Aquinas for one, the dumb ox they called him. Can you think of more?

Did you ever think that being overweight could be from God to keep you humble? Isn’t being overweight embarrassing? Are you prone to vanity? Well, perhaps God is keeping you this way to protect your soul?

When you are overweight, it is hard to find clothes, it is hard to look in the mirror, it is hard to take a second piece of dinner, lest someone think “oh that’s why she is so fat.”

Do you feel guilty for being overweight?
Well, let me tell you now that there should not be any guilt associated with being overweight. Why? Well, think about it, do you really sit there all day eating bon-bons? Did you really take everyday last week to sleep every day? (well, anyone that has, that’s between you and God!)

Seriously though, most people, men and women, don’t eat their way to being fat. Having to wear clothes that barely fit you, the rising uneasiness when you realize you have to use a fitting room to try on clothes, and the struggle with yourself, when you have to pay extra for plus size clothing – is a sacrifice all by itself. Isn’t it?

How many of us have been humiliated by our size and our clothing and how it doesn’t fit us. We pass by a mirror only to cringe how large we look. How perfect for God to keep us humble and allow our weight to mold our hearts?

Have you ever considered how much more you think of God, when your overweight? How much more you are; sad, disappointed, embarrassed, frustrated at your weight? How more often we cry out to God? I seriously think God allows some of us to keep our weight, to help us see with ourselves more as we really are.

That is unless, we fight God’s will, and argue with God all the time about it. Now I’m not saying we should be satisfied with our size and do nothing about it. No difference than we should be satisfied with our spiritual life. Our life is a progress a journey and different times will bring us to different crossroads. We must never be satisfied with where we are at any time in our life.

As we know that being overweight is not healthy we should do what we can to improve our health. But let us not get discouraged when what we apply, does not work.

Keep in mind that God loves you the way you are. Whether overweight, in a wheelchair, or with missing eyes, honestly; He loves you the way you are. What we must be sure of, is the state of our soul. And that is the most beautiful thing when in the state of grace. The value of one soul cannot be measured. It caused God Himself to give up His life for us. Never undervalue how much you are worth to God, when He Himself died for you.

So take care of your soul 1st, and your body will take care of itself.

But there are some times in my life, that I got frustrated by not being able to make progress with weight loss. When we are doing all we can, but make no progress – use that time to mold us spiritually. Allow God to; yes, humiliate you, and say, “Gods will be done, in all things”every time a pang of humiliation or frustration hits you. You’ll be amazed at the progress you will make with this simple method.

Getting beyond ‘stuck’ for Weight loss

But, when all is said and done, we still want to lose weight. To be able to fit into regular size clothes, to not feel ugly when we get dressed and step out the door.

So, we look. I’ve see the ads too. “Take this pill and lose 20lbs this week”

or if you “just buy this kit you too will lose like I did”

You see when I was young, I struggled with anorexia and bulimia. When only 13, I lost 60lbs in one summer. It was a scary time. Years later, as I became a mom and recovered my weight, I was afraid of dieting. As much as I wanted to lose the weight I had gained, I was afraid of going down the same path when I was younger. So, I put off weight loss and studied getting healthy so I could keep my mind off “dieting”. Ultimately I realized what I really wanted was the be healthy, avoid heart attacks and stroke (like the stroke I had when I was only 26yrs old). So I studied natural health for 6 years.

I’ve seen some sites promoting quick fix solutions. This comes from the misconception that being overweight is just from laying around too much and eating too much. This is far from the truth.

For one thing, there is never a quick fix solution. And today, we should know, there is never a ‘one size fits all solution’. But we all still fall for it, and there goes another bit of our money down the tube.

Many of us are mothers of many. Perhaps you have 3 children 7 or 12?
Either way we know that having children ‘can’ have an affect on our weight. But not in the way we think. This is who I want to reach out too. Those struggling with their weight for years, trying to put it behind them. I ‘grew’ with my children, my first baby I gained 70lbs alone!

There are plenty of mothers out there with 10 or more children, that I know of, that do not have excessive weight problems. Does this mean they just have more control of their eating? I am sure they do, but this is not the entire answer.

Let’s look at some Causes of Extra weight:

If you haven’t read my previous health articles, be sure to read those too, as they will fill in some topics I am just going to breeze over here.

But seriously, after all my studies and experience, I’ve realized;

being overweight is a sign of poor health.

What came first? The chicken or the egg?

Does poor health cause being overweight?

Or does being overweight, cause the health issues?

I think it is both.

But more often, I think – poor health causes us to gain weight and more than we think.

Let’s take a look at the list of issues relating to added weight:

1. Lack of Sleep: This is a new moms’ best friend, NOT. Late nights, new babies, lack of sleep start the cycle of your body being under stress. It’s a recipe for added weight. Catholic moms are especially prone to this, with the frequent babies, and the self-sacrificing we do for our families. Studies are now showing us that lack of sleep is a cause of added weight as the body tries to cope with less rest.

2. Stress: Stress is the end result of years of lack of sleep, lack of rest, the arguments that come up with hubby in those early years. Colicky babies, or perhaps even disabled children, along with deaths in the family, financial woes and all the things that come up with family life. All this stress taxes the adrenals, and lays the foundation for more added weight.

3. Adrenals: these small glands on top of your kidneys control much of the hormones in your body. The ‘flight or fight’ syndrome we are all popular with, come from these. With our heavily stressed lives, these organs continue to struggle under the load. By middle age, these organs can be in failure mode and with the added cortisol they put out, our middle or “muffin top” increases and then we have added belly fat causing us more trouble.

4. Nutritional Deficiencies: Now as we have had accumulated stress, our body starts losing out on nutrients. This is the first indication that something has been going on for some time. Studies have shown nutrient deficiencies like Vitamin D can be the key to weight gain. Lack of Vitamin D, so common in northern hemisphere spells disaster for losing weight. B12 is also another vitamin implicated in weight gain. These two vitamins alone you should be tested for, to see where your levels are. And overall general testing is a good idea too.

5. Thyroid and other issues: By now, your body has been struggling under a load, this stressed body is adding weight to cope and now other organs are being compromised. For some this is Thyroid issues for others it is pancreatic, or blood sugar issues. Or more serious issues. Both of these will wreck havoc on your plans to lose weight. Be sure to get your Thyroid and or adrenals checked if you have been struggling with your weight too.

6. Wheat Belly: By now you’ve read my article on gluten {here}. This is another missed connection to being overweight. I, for one, went years not knowing about my gluten intolerance. Though I had all the symptoms from aching belly everyday growing up, there was never a connection made, until the damage was so intense, that my adrenals had failed and my blood sugar issues were out of control. By then my belly had ballooned, much to my dismay. If you have not tried a gluten free diet, I encourage you to take a look at it more seriously. This could be the cause of your weight gain. One woman I met recently, lost 30 lbs just going glutenfree.

7. Overeating caused by wheat: another aspect of gluten intolerance is the ravenous hunger you get from eating wheat. This can come from low blood sugars too. My appetite could barely be satied, in the later years, with normal servings of food. Since my body was not absorbing what it needed my gluten intolerance was more like an addiction. If you have ‘hidden’ trouble with overeating, take a really serious look at gluten in your life. Read the Wheat Belly by Dr. William Davis. It will be a real eye opener.

8. Diet; take a good look at what your eating. Get rid of the processed foods, that can be adding to your weight. Some popular weight loss pills have caffeine in them. This is a quick fix solution to speed up the metabolism, but for anyone with adrenal trouble, this added caffeine will add to your weight, since caffeine increases cortisol production, which adds to belly weight. Pay attention to label, and eat more natural foods.

So what is the solution?

Here is my plan for sustainable weight loss:

1. take a good look at what your eating?Do you have uncontrolled hunger? Do you eat more bread then you do vegetables? Do you dream about toast, or pizza? If you have gluten symptoms (see my past article for symptoms) I highly recommend getting tested from www.enterolab.com. This will be a good start for you.

2. Nutrient Deficiencies: Get some testing done to see what your status is. Low Vitamin D and B12 in particular will cause your body to hold on to weight.

3. Stress, will cause weight to hold on.Start developing a trust in God. With so many kids, financial stress, economic and even worries about the world. Start developing a deeper relationship with God. Trust in Him more, so that you can ‘let go and let God’. We all need more of this today.

4. Check Thyroid and adrenals: If you have done all the above and still no results, get tested for your entire thyroid panel as well as adrenals. These two will show you a lot and will be another answer to your added weight. By taking care of yourself, resting more (yes, resting more!) you will heal your adrenals and in time your weight will start to respond.

5. Start an exercise program. I for one, am not fond of exercise. Being sick for so many years I never became an active person. But, the problem is many don’t realize that strenuous exercise will add inflammation to the body. For anyone with adrenal issues, you cannot exercise as it simply will tire you out so badly you can’t function for a few days. Anyone who has suffered this will know what I am talking about. Others will laugh this off like we are ‘faking it’. It’s a cross to bear. But adrenal and thyroid issues are serious and cause serious issues for exercise. The only exercise I recommend is Ttapp. Ttapp is a easy exercise that is excellent for those with health issues because it works on pumping out the lymph. This alone can help your body lose by flushing our built up toxins. Perfect for those struggling to lose weight and those with adrenal issues that we have to be careful how much we do.

So you see, by recovering your health you will recover your weight!

Take myself for example, I damaged my health when young with anorexia and bulimia. Then constant dieting when growing up, slowed down my metabolism.

As I started having babies and stress started adding up in my life, my adrenals got taxed. More years passed and undiagnosed gluten intolerance was impacting my health more. As my adrenals got more taxed, they started putting out cortisol. This added cortisol added weight to my stomach like nobody’s business. It literally blew up over one year! I was up to my largest, size 24W by then, and feeling miserable. Little did I know my adrenals had just crashed.

By now I was diagnosed with gluten intolerance and went glutenfree. That started my feeling better right away. But soon after my blood sugars got out of control, and so I had to start eating more protein and often to keep my sugars balanced.

It was at this time I found out my adrenals were failing. So, I started taking care of them, by taking supplements like: Bee Pollen, Kelp, Spirulina, Pantothenic Acid, Bcomplex, alfalfa along with my other vitamins.

My low Vitamin D was confirmed as well as my low B12, end result of the damage done by the gluten all these years. So, started supplementing with 6000UI of Vitamin D and 1000mcg of B12. This took a long time to start working. Almost a year before my levels started coming up.

Then I found Ttapp exercise. I had a slow start with Ttapp. Once my adrenals failed I could barely get any exercise in at all. I had to be extremely careful or I could lose two days by exhausting myself. Slow but sure I began.

Now that a year has passed, My Vitamin D levels are finally coming up to normal and my B12 is nearly there as well. I trust God more and try not take life so seriously. Living with 3 disabled boys can be a real stress. So, I am resting when I can and taking care of myself better.

Good news is I have successfully lost 5” off my waist as of today! That growing belly beast has been put to shame! I have not dieted or taken any diet pills. But simply getting more rest, correcting my gluten issues, supplementing to improve my deficiencies and doing proper Ttapp exercise, I have been able to see my waist size drop by 2 sizes already! I’m now a size 20w from 24w!

I don’t claim to know everything in this weight loss struggle. But I have seen what has worked for me, when I was stuck at plus size for most of my life. I do not know what God has planned for me. If He thinks my vanity could take being smaller, but I pray I have learned enough humility and modesty, to appreciate my smaller size.

I pray this will bring those of you with weight issues some hope, and I want to hear from you how you are doing? I’ll be sure to keep everyone updated on my own losses too!

God bless you as you seek His will in your lives! Share with me your successes below!

 

©Copyright 2013 Rita Davidson All Rights Reserved.

Rita is a Catholic wife and mother of seven children. Mark is her ever patient husband. She reverted back to the faith when her oldest was making her First Communion. By then, she had completed degrees in Hairdressing and Make up artistry. She went on to receive a degree in Natural Health and another degree in Art. At age 26, Rita suffered a minor stroke. With no lasting effects, this dramatically changed her outlook on life. In 1996, Rita began ‘Little Flowers Family Apostolates’ to reach out to other families with her new found faith, by creating unique Catholic books and resources.. In 1999, she wrote the bestselling, ‘Immodesty; Satan’s Virtue’. She was editor of ‘The Catholic Health Letter’ for 7 years. She has been a homeschooling mom for 20+ years, and has written for various magazines. She is honored that families have trusted her with their questions, needs and concerns over the years. She continues to write and reach out to Catholic families with her husband, Mark and their 4 boys through http://www.LittleFlowersFamilyPress.com

Comments 6

  1.  I have been obese for about 40 years.  I have tried many diets over the years. Loosing 50 – 70 lbs but always gaining it back.  I have had similar problems that Rita mentions. Stress, insomnia, love Vitamin D, and more.   I am through with diets!  I just want to eat like a normal person.
    I have osteoarthritis which  has become so severe, that I have not driven a car  in over 3 years, have trouble walking and getting in and out of chairs. I  need to have 2 knee replacements, and 1 hip replaced. I believe the other hip is “On deck”.
     My knees are bone on bone, and my hip no longer has a “ball and socket” the ball is worn flat. Due to this I am not even able to put on my own shoes and socks without help or the use of a device.
    The doctor will not operate until I loose about 75lbs- 100lbs. I am at I high risk of infection due to the weight.  I am 57 years old but I feel like a 90 yr. old when it comes to mobility.

    I finally made up my mind that I have to do it. I lost 43lbs in 29 weeks. So I thought I would share my “diet plan” I call it the “5P’s” Prayer, Patience, Penance, Perseverance, and Portion Control.

    As far as portion control, I use a dessert plate as my dinner plate, and I use small dessert dish for my cereal. No weighing or measuring. I do try and eat a lot of whole grains, fruits and vegetables and lots of chicken and fish, but I have not eliminated any particular food group from my diet. I eat everything but all in moderation.
    For every 10 lbs of weight lost it take about 40 lbs of pressure off my knees. This information came from the orthopedic surgeon. What an incentive!
    But Please pray that I continue to persevere and am able to have surgery.  I would love to throw out my cane and walker! 🙂

    1.  Beautiful Mary! I”m so glad you shared your plan with everyone here! We can all be inspired by your success! And I LOVE your “5P’s” Prayer, Patience, Penance, Perseverance, and Portion Control!” That’s a plan ! 🙂 I hope my articles have been helpful and we will be sure to pray for you! If you ever want to read The Wheat Belly, by Dr. William Davis, it will give you some ideas on arthritis that you haven’t found yet. It’s easy to find in the library since it is a popular book. It might help your osteoarthritis as well as give a few more tips for weight loss too. You have alot of healing ahead of you. Be assured of our prayers! God bless you! Xo

  2. I am 52 have 17children,and have struggled with weight for years. I enjoyed your informative article. I have been praying to be able. To fast for my children and husband but have never had successes . Not even for an hour , or a day was unheard of. recently the good Lord has seen fit to remove some of the stress from my life and put in place some help to get the fasting going. As God is merciful he has also allowed me to lose some weight. I believe with 11children grown and 6still home the most important thing we can do for them is prayer and fasting. It doesn’t have to be much, but then beg our Dear Lord to bless it with the weight loss also since we need to be healthy also to handle all the stress in life. I am struggling with wondering if I am also gluten intolerant, since I seem to have some symptom . What I have done is give up one thing for each person . That way when u want to eat it u say I’m doing this for so aond so, so I can’t . It really makes each sacrifice personal.i will look into other issues u mentioned regarding heAlth.i am down 50 lbs since October . Also a novena or two can really help get u going.get those saintly helpers. I will remember u and any who respond to u in my prayers. Give Glory to God in all things .

    1. Post
      Author

      Hi Linda, thank you for those excellent tips on making sacrifices for our children and loosing weight in the process! We can never forget how admirable prayer and fasting are and God will surely reward us for them. Be sure to read the other health articles I have and I Hope they help you with finding out if your gluten intolerance is a problem for you too. That is another area that can keep weight on us too. WIth 17 children God must have known you would be a good mama to them all! What a beautiful family you must have! God bless you, Rita/LFFA

  3. I came back here to reread this. I honestly was shocked (I know… I know… I shouldn’t be lol BUT STILL) at the attitude of so many Trads concerning obesity. Seriously, they posted crude jokes about un-intellectualness and so on! I commented and wrote down so many of the problems ppl face like hyperthyroidism and so on and weighed-in (lol) on my battle with Depression and Anxiety and that the anti-depressants now caused me 90 lbs of weight gain. Silly me. I got “taught” on how its my fault that I’m depressed because “its impossible that so many ppl are ‘depressed’ and on ‘meds’ its really fishy” and that I can’t possibly be overweight for any other reason whan over eating because, science and physiscs and laws of nature…
    I know I’m right. I know how much I suffer (thanks be to God) because of my crosses. But how can this still make me so mad? This concerns so many suffering Catholic’s who are desperate and feeling so alone and terrible, and here are Trads shaming them.
    Thank you again for this article. It is so needed today…
    I think I’d like to become an official “plus sized” Catholic blogger because of all this haha. But I’m terrified… like… what if the comments bring me into a “low” ? What if it doesn’t help anyone at all? What if I make a fool of myself? What if, it isn’t God’s will after all? lol
    Well, that was a huge vent-vomit 🙂
    I really appreciate this article – God bless you <3 and please let me know what you think!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.