It didn't bring me health, peace or happiness – but finding a way to stop hating my body, treat it a little more kindly, and forget about weight loss certainly has.
But there are no quick fixes, unfortunately.
The summer holiday season is upon us and many are planning to go on vacation with family and friends to experience life in another country for a couple of weeks. During the summer holidays, comfortable resorts, warm waters and white, sandy beaches will surely be enjoyed.
Are YOU a real woman? I can't tell if I'm honest. The glut of content I've read (note - I mean had shoved in my face by ALL THE MEDIA) is shall we say, 'conflicted' on the topic.
What do you hear when you listen to ads telling you that you have "4 weeks to fit into your LBD", or to "tone your tum for Christmas", "drop a dress size before Christmas", or advising "how not to ruin your diet during Xmas". Me? I heard fear, failure, and the reinforced message that I could not be trusted around food.
Often we want something in our lives but behave in ways that are contrary to achieving our goals. The process of achieving that weight loss goal is a whole process, and an uncomfortable process. It's uncomfortable letting go of food, waiting until you're physically hungry to eat.
What would you say if I told you that the reality of being slim can be scary and therefore we sometimes resort to being fat, either regaining weight or holding onto our extra weight?
Years of beating myself up because I didn't fit into a size 8 eventually taught me a life lesson: If you do not feel good about yourself when you are overweight, then you will not feel good about yourself when you are slim either.
Being overweight is so frowned upon that many people don't even for a minute consider the up-sides of carrying extra weight.
Being overweight is not simply one-sided and negative. It has a function and a purpose. You may feel bad about your weight, but importantly can you see a new meaning in your weight? Can you give yourself a chance to figure out what all of your extra eating is about? Can you see any benefits to having extra weight, or have you anxieties around letting go of weight or food?
Ill-disciplined, lazy, greedy, irrational in their behaviour, and guilty of putting healthcare services under increasing pressure. The problem with the above judgements is that they overlook subjective experiences and the complexities of our relationship with food and our self-image.
The most awful part of eating in secret or when no-one else is watching is the shame. When you're ashamed you want the ground to open up and swallow you or crawl under a rock and never come out. It's like when you can't shake the feeling that you've done something horribly wrong.
I'm fed up to my teeth with diets and deprivation as a way of managing weight and food. It's time to move beyond a focus on food plans and diets, and start addressing the emotions, habits and situations that lead to your unhealthy eating.
What does the word diet mean to you? A recent survey has revealed that 44% of slimmers say they previously saw fast weight
The Paleo, Mediterranean and 5:2diet plans were some of the most popular of 2013, but as we move swiftly into the new year
It appears that in the UK we have become so politically correct that accurate biological terminology can't be applied even when highly appropriate and in perfect context. We have to swerve around precise, quantifiable and descriptive words and replace them with ineffectual euphemisms.
This feature won't stop you - or us, for that matter - from ploughing face first into the Christmas pudding, but we were
Apparently not many do, and I'd like to tell you why. As a weight management practitioner and obesity lecturer of 20 years I have made up my mind on a number of weight-related matters, however they are unlikely to draw any gasps or change the course of history.
"Blimey Sandra that avocado must have been the size of a beach-ball!" An average avocado (150g) contains 240 kcal and Sandra had put on the equivalent of over 10,000kcals or 41 avocados in one week. I worried about this for some time. How could someone see things in such a way that was impossible for someone else to understand?
Obesity is set to be the biggest medical cash cow of all time. One out of every eight dollars the U.S. government spends on healthcare goes to provide care for people with type 2 diabetes [T2D] (over one hundred billion dollars) and it is evident that the global T2D epidemic is being driven by obesity. By giving obesity clinical legitimacy, spending on healthcare is destined to soar.