When Amber first started her fitness blog five years ago, she was on the beginning of a body image journey.
According to the American mother's blog, her aim was to transform her body shape from obese to super-fit and super-lean -- and during the process, she developed the Kaleo diet, while also qualifying as a personal trainer and weight-loss coach.
However, in the past few months, the mother-of-two has slightly reviewed her own personal approach to weight loss.
Having reached her target weight and body shape -- dropping down to 148 pounds, with a body fat percentage of 12% at her slimmest -- she discovered that the desired numbers didn't meet her health needs.
On her blog, Amber explains: "I hovered between 148 and 152 for about 2 months, and began to experience some symptoms of underweight and undereating, in spite of being at a scale weight that qualified as healthy and consuming 2200-2400 calories a day, which most people would consider not only adequate but probably quite indulgent.
"Perhaps more concerning, I also began to develop symptoms of body dysmorphia, a sign of disordered eating."
As a result, Amber sought to deliberately gain weight and discovered that as she regained her fat reserves, her health problems also disappeared.
However, according to the standard American body mass index guidelines, and despite her incredible figure, the scales told her she could stand to lose a few pounds.
"My current weight puts me just over the ‘healthy weight’ cut off on the BMI scale, I am officially overweight. In the last year, the primary focus of my training and diet has been strength and mass gains. I have gained some lean mass, and I’ve also gained some fat. This is not a failure," she writes.
On her blog, Amber describes her new found understanding of weight-loss diets, and the negative impact they can have on your body.
"There comes a point at which the hyperfocus on fat loss becomes unhealthy. When a person is at a healthy weight, pursuing fat loss is no longer a health-promoting goal, it is at best an aesthetic pursuit, and at worst a risk to long-term health.
"The body will resist losing those last pounds of essential fat, and forcing the issue can set up a metabolic state that leads to adverse health outcomes and potentially even trigger eating disorders. Fat loss isn’t always good."
She explains that in the past year, she's changed her goals and reevaluated her approach to weight loss. But, in that times, she's also noticed that the response to her weight gain isn't usually positive.
"Every time I post on my facebook page about my weight gain, I get advice about how to turn it around. Even when I say specifically that I am gaining weight on purpose, I still get advice about how to lose weight. It’s like my words don’t even register beyond the weight gain.
"If I’ve gained weight it must be bad, and I must want to change it. The concept of a person, especially a woman, intentionally gaining weight is completely foreign.
"Weight gain = failure. End of story."
To find out more about Amber's approach to diet and fitness, visit Go Kaleo.com
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