I must say I have always sneered at these types of diet. To me they are just screaming the obvious like when my other friend said, in all seriousness, "they take a blood test to see what you are intolerant to and it came back - cakes, biscuits, crisps, sugar etc" You don't say. What all the things that make everyone fat irrespective of whether or not they've had a blood test? Mmmm rocket science that one. Us women eh. If there was a magic pill we'd take it - Lighter Life it seems is the next best thing - oh that and surgery.
But having said all this, I didn't sneer at this lady. She has 3 children 11, 8 and 5 - the youngest has cerebral palsy so no easy set up by any stretch of the imagination. It has been proven that lack of sleep has a major impact on weight loss - her youngest child's sleeping pattern is irregular to say the least and on a good night my friend will get 6 hours uninterrupted sleep. I am staggered by the energy of this woman be it large or small. She was an active member of the PTA, has campaigned tireless against something she feels very passionate about, is part of a community group and the list does go on. An all round good egg. Who would be grudge and sneer at someone that, not surprisingly, has neglected to take care of herself? Certainly not me. If this type of diet gives her some contentment, some happiness in the way she looks, some confidence who am I to say what a load of old bollocks this diet is? So with an open mind I asked her some questions. Read in detail about her diet and our interview here.
|I have to say I like her in both pics - happy mother of 3/sassy mother of 3 - what do you think?|
She looked on the larger side but, personally, I wouldn't have thought crikey luv you've let yourself go. Although I do judge a lot of things (see almost all blog posts - and everyone does it - don't care what you say) I don't automatically look at someone obese or an alcoholic and think greedy/drunkard! You don't know what peoples circumstances are. You don't know what has made them unhappy to resort to certain vices.
She says many of her friends and family have said she looks 'gaut'. I think that's quite harsh when you look at the definition of 'gaut':-
1. extremely thin and bony; haggard and drawn, as from great hunger, weariness, or torture; emaciated.
Not exactly a compliment then. I have a standard line I use when someone has lost a lot of weight "you've lost half your face, where's it gone?!" I think that's far more complimentary than saying someone looks gaunt. Also if you've had 6/9 months of seeing someone lose weight over a longer period of time then the change isn't so obvious. Maybe if the weight loss is sudden people find it harder to adjust to a big change in someones appearance - hence the 'gaut' comments.
I do think my friend looks better. Yes, her face is thinner and yes possibly she looks a tad older. She says her husband can't get enough of her which interestingly has annoyed her somewhat. Clearly, he didn't prefer her as she was. Some would argue and why should he? Do you have a duty to try and maintain an element of your former self? Her children have also remarked she looks nicer and don't seem to mind that she is eating separate foods from them. I did ask what she missed about being fat and she, surprisingly said, being naked. Now that she is thinner she doesn't like how she looks naked. Its like the skin is empty.
Having taken all this on board I, personally, would rather be overweight then lose 4 stone in 4 months. I don't say that flippantly or because I'm envious as bizarrely I'm not. I wouldn't want to see a counsellor about my thoughts on eating etc. I fear it would just make it more of an issue than it needs to be. One of the reasons I vowed never to re-join any slimming club was that I did not want my children to see me being obsessed with what I weigh, counting points, counting syns, having 'good' days, 'bad' days. I want them to have a normal attitude towards food - whatever that may be.
I also don't believe eating 1,000 calories a day is realistic (although every concern has a good answer on the Lighter Life plan) or that you won't start gaining as soon as you start eating more even if it is introduced slowly. The messing around with your metabolism - I'm sure it can't be good. However, I don't believe anyone in the western world will ever experience starvation mode. The body can cope amazingly well with very little.
I don't like having to eat separately from friends and family - this lady came out with us on a Xmas night out and sat and drunk some water and coffee. I don't like the cost of the 'let us give you 1,000 calories and we'll take £50 a week off you'. I would rather just eat 1,000 calories and not give someone £50.00.
I am determined to lose weight in my own tortise way - it may not be radical but I think I am getting there. I am trying to shake off all the negativity I have endured about weight throughout my life - people who transfer their own weight issues onto you or their own negativity. It is hard sometimes not to become a self fulfilling prophesy. At times, we all feel desperate with our weight and maybe that is why this diet is appealing to many.
Finally, my friend sent me some statistics from the lighterlife website. Now I don't know how you would interpret this but if you lose 20% of your body weight (well lets face if you're paying £50 per week you'd want to be) that their own statistics show you only have 25% chance of having kept it all off 3 years later. Now if you gave me those odds for, say, giving birth naturally I think its fair to say I'd have a c-section (which I did - 3 actually!).
I really hope that my friend is one of those 25% as she does deserve it. It is impressive and slightly tempting to think you could lose 4 stone in as many months but its not for me. This tortoise is going to carry on until the race end is in sight!
What do you think? We'd love to hear your comments.