I know, that not something you’d ever expect me to say, right? But I am grateful to Weight Watchers, not because I reached my ‘goal weight’ with their programmes – I never did, any of the three times I signed on with them – but because something that happened during a lecture helped free me from the ‘must weigh x to be good enough’ mindset I’d lived with for years.
So it was just another lecture day, I guess I was about six weeks into the program, when the lecturer called on one of the regulars to share one of her favourite weight loss tricks.
This was years ago remember, when I still believed that finding the right weight loss trick was the elusive key to ‘success’.
So, this lady shared her top tip. Turns out she loved coconut milk in her food, so to get the flavour of the cream without the calories, she’d replace it with a tin of evaporated skim milk and half a teaspoon of coconut essence.
From my perspective here and now, evaporated milk is milk boiled within an inch of its life and is essentially a dead food, with nutrients added in afterwards. And coconut essence is also essentially a synthetic food. But, at Weight Watchers in 1990-something calories were the important factor, so let’s compare:
15ml evaporated milk 10 calories
Coconut essence 0 calories
Made of: Condensed skim milk, sodium ascorbate (vitamin C), carrageenan, vitamin A palmitate, cholecalciferol (vitamin D3), may contain disodium phoshate [from synthetic sourcesose calorie cou I believe].
15ml coconut milk 26 calories
Made of: coconuts.
Now I guess when you multiply those calorie counts into a recipe there’s a good calorie saving. But what about the nutrition? Coconut milk also contains calcium, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, manganese, copper, zinc, vitamin c, vitamin e, lauric acid (all trace minerals our bodies need), some sugar from the coconut, and saturated fats including omega 6.
Saturated fats – gasp – the great evil. Well no they’re not, read anything by Cyndi O’Meara or Sally Fallon to get the true story on saturated fats. As my granny still says (at 100!), everything in moderation!
I didn’t know the above numbers during that lecture but there was something about the whole conversation that made me feel distinctly uneasy. I was already getting leary of all the synthetics and low fat everything with artificial sugars that the lectures promoted and sent us off to the supermarket to buy, their own brand of course.
Why fake it, I thought? Why put in all that synthetic stuff to save a few calories? It just didn’t make sense….
After the meeting I sought out the woman – I can remember her face but not her name – because I wanted to know what kept her going to WW, two years after she’d reached her goal weight. She told me she still attended regularly because she felt the group meeting kept her motivated to ‘stay on maintenance’.
Again, something that didn’t make sense to me, that made me feel immensely uneasy – why did we have to put so much time and energy into manage our weight, when 100,000 years of ancestors hadn’t had to do that?
That night really opened me up to the absurdity of what we were all doing, just one more step to finally loving and accepting my body, imperfectly perfect…
So I wonder, what ‘weight loss tricks‘ have you tried over the years that when you look back at them now, make you think – what the? Please share below….
Latest posts by Sandy (see all)
- In ten years…. - May 17, 2013
- Julianna Suranyi – Be Who You Are - May 16, 2013
- Michelle Marie McGrath – Self Love and Self Criticism… - May 14, 2013
- Are You Thirsting for a Man’s Approval of Your Body? - May 11, 2013