February 2006Monthly Archives

How to feed the stomach

The following is from The Weigh Down Diet by Gwen Shamblin.

  1. Wait anywhere from one to thirty-six hours on your first hunger, and then it will be approximately one to three times a day. Do not fear–you will love the energy you feel from this and the delight from being able to wait.
  2. Hunger is a polite burning sensation, the feeling of a knot inside your stomach. If you have to bypass hunger due to work or social conflicts, the sensation will come back around in forty-five minutes. While it is normal to skip hunger once in a while, do not make it a habit. If you haven’t felt hunger within thirty-six hours, eat a small meal and wait for hunger again. You should feel it soon. After your first attempt, do not keep waiting thirty-six hours. Continue to decrease your food daily until you feel stomach hunger. Do not be legalistic. We are working on reducing food intakes to normal amounts for your body.
  3. Family meal time. If you are hungry before dinner, just bypass hunger. If you are full at normal mealtime because of an irregular eating schedule or because you tasted all your cooking–several times–then just drink a glass of non-caloric tea and talk to the family.
  4. Drink non-caloric beverages to help the sugar levels drop normally so that you can get the hunger signal. Continual intake of sugar through drinks prevents you from sensing hunger.
  5. Sip your drink between bites. Stop eating when you are satisfied.
  6. Rate foods. Decide which foods you like best and eat those first, saving the least favorite until the end. Generally, leave desserts until last.
  7. Wrap up leftovers. You can have them the next time you are hungry.
  8. Use carryouts when eating out. Restaurants serve such large portions. Some foods, especially pastas, taste better the next day. Some just turn green in the fridge, and then you can easily throw them away!
  9. Do not serve yourself a five-course meal just because a medication must be taken with food. Food needed with pills can be small amounts like one to three crackers. You do not need a banquet unless the physician orders that.
  10. In the Weigh Down Workshop, expect your food consumption to decrease 1/2 to 2/3 of what you were eating as an overeater. As you progress, you may expect your desire eating, or desire for food, to decrease over time.

Spiritual weight control

Food Heart“DROP 100 LBS WITHOUT DIETING: Arizona State researchers I.D. the mental habit that transforms body chemistry to melt fat super-fast!” So proclaims the cover of the latest issue of one of my favorite magazines, First For Women. I took a look at the article and found that the “mental habit” mentioned is prayer. The article refers the reader to a couple of web sites: First Place and Weigh Down. These are both organizations for weight loss based on Christian principles. While I am not specifically Christian, I figured it could be worthwhile to dig a little deeper and find out more about their approach. I checked with my local library system and found that they had a book by the founder of Weigh Down: The Weigh Down Diet by Gwen Shamblin. The beginning pages of the book speak of how we are born with two empty places in our bodies: our stomachs and our hearts. Problems arise when we try to satiate heart hunger with food. Love is for the heart, and food is for the stomach. And so begins that reading journey.

As I looked through resources relating to spirituality and weight loss, I was reminded of The Joy of Weight Loss on the Beliefnet site. When I looked for other items about weight loss on Beliefnet, I came across an article about mindful eating. How often do we grab something on the run and eat it unconsciously without really paying attention to what we are doing much less where the food came from or how it got to us? Another article on Beliefnet, Getting Fit for God, has some good ideas to work with as well.

I would like to glean good concepts from these readings about spiritual weight loss and put them together in a more generalized form. It isn’t to secularize them but to separate them from specific religious references. I like the idea of calling on Higher Power to assist with goals and will definitely incorporate that into what I do.