My unwanted weight gain started with two conditions, one genetic, and the other environmental.
Condition Number One: Dopamine Resistance.
I was born with a mutation of the A1 allele of the D2 dopamine receptor. This mutation can be found in hunter gatherer populations, and in the descendants of groups of people who experienced severe prolonged famine. This causes dopamine resistance which shows up as Reward Deficiency Syndrome. I hope you’ll read the article linked above, as it gives incredible insight into a possible causes of so many of the challenges we face as modern humans including, overeating, addiction, attention deficits, and even procrastination.
Condition Numer Two: Insulin Resistance.
Some of my earliest memories are of eczema, regular stomach pain, and nausea. Researchers have known about the connection between glucose intolerance and eczema since the 1920’s. The eczema was bad enough, but when my mother’s doctor told her to put her family on a low cholesterol, low fat diet my symptoms got worse. Instead of just pain and itching, I now had an appetite that was out of control. Worst of all, by age seven I was steadily gaining weight over what would be expected for normal growth.
Fast forward to pregnancy, severe glucose intolerance, and obesity.
When I was pregnant, I failed my glucose tolerance test, and I developed P.I.H.: Pregnancy Induced Hypertension. This resulted in high blood pressure, swelling from water retention, and rapid fat gain. Before I became pregnant, I had been able to maintain a normal weight with cigarettes and diet pils, but I had given those up in order to get ready for a healthy pregnancy. Happily, I had a healthy baby. My son Colin is a wonderful young man age 21. Unfortunately, I remained insulin resistant, glucose intolerant, and I began to experience carbohydrate triggered binge eating.
How I Lost Seventy Pounds.
It took seven years to find the solution to my overeating and overweight conditions, but I was able to do it by learning to manage my Reward Deficiency Syndrome and my insulin resistance/hyper-insulinemia.
Eating and Training.
The first step was to eliminate anything in a bag or box from my eating plan. I call these processed and packaged foods Corporate Carbohydrates. Corporate Carbohydrates are any plant foods that have been modified for profit. These profit modifications usually make them shelf stable, and hard to resist. Modification number one is the addition of sugar or high fructose corn syrup. By eliminating sugar and grains from my diet, and adding a sensible program of resistance and interval training, I was able to stabilize at a healthy weight of 125.
Weight Loss/Maintenance after Menopause.
After age 55, I eliminated more carbohydrates from my nutrition plan. By keeping carbs very low, I am able to keep my weight stable, and my motivation high. I have enormous amounts of energy, I am free of aches, pains, injury, and weakness. If I get down or depressed, I revitalize my faith, spend more time in nature, get more sun and use my light box, and make sure I am nurturing my relationships.
By acting, singing, dancing, drawing, gardening, raising chickens, making music, and volunteering I am able to get happiness from the things I do, instead of blocking sadness with the things I consume.
My complete diet can be found here: Three Day Sugar Detox.
I hope that you will discover the foods that nourish and satisfy you, and the activities that make you happy.