I’m currently driving back to Charlotte from Florida. Here’s a great success story from fellow blogger Cynthia. Enjoy!
Cynthia wrote, “I was a heavy teen and twenty-something but never remember weighing myself. I knew I was bigger than most people my age and was miserable but didn’t want to do anything about it.
While applying to seminary I realized my weight would make my new career responsibilities difficult. I was finally ready to head out on the journey to a healthier me. I can only guess my weight at 270+ based on doctor’s visits. I was scared of the real number so I didn’t own a scale.
In six months, I lost 100 pounds by changing my eating habits and exercising. This was a vast departure from a steady diet of cookies, cake and Velveeta shells & cheese and losing my breath while climbing stairs. My new diet was full of fresh whole foods and the occasional 100 calorie packs and Weight Watchers snacks for a sweet treats.
With the stress of my seminary schedule I gained a bit of weight before joining Weight Watchers. I reached my happy weight just before my wedding.
I was healthy, happy, and a runner to boot. However my stomach constantly hurt along with other digestive issues…catch my drift. I had the same problems prior to losing weight but I always blamed my poor diet. I knew I was eating junk therefore I blamed myself. Instead of seeing a doctor who would tell me to lose weight to help my symptoms I was on a steady diet of Pep to Bismol and Gas-X.
Still having pain post-weight loss was baffling since I was eating very little processed food and exercising regularly. I’d played Dr. Cynthia with Google long enough so I gave a Medical Doctor a go at it. My physician scheduled an immediate appointment with a Gastroenterologist. Thorough examinations revealed no tumors, which lead to a battery of other tests to determine the problem. A colonoscopy was one of the most unpleasant experiences of my life. I didn’t have Crohn’s disease (YEAH!) but I had severe IBS (boo!).
The worst thing about this diagnosis is the lack of a specific treatment. I was started on a prescription for the stomach cramping yet I had breakthrough flares. Apparently something or things I was eating did not make my stomach happy…thus the pain. I was ticked. I was eating healthy food and was sicker than family and friends who subsisted on pizza and beer. What a pain in the…stomach. One by one we eliminated foods that caused flares. Some days I could only eat oatmeal and toast due to the pain. By the end I had a list of foods and additives that made my stomach symptoms worse. Since then I’ve cut out meat (I’m an accidental vegetarian), sugars and sugar alcohols, most dairy products and a few other things. With these adjustments I’m even healthier than the day I made my happy weight.
Not only am I at a lower risk for all the health problems that plague my family due to weight but I’m a healthier eater with my extreme caution to ingredients and how food is prepared.
My IBS made me realize that even “healthy” people can have health issues. We are all different and need to eat according to our body’s needs. If I had never lost the weight I would have been too embarrassed to have my IBS symptoms checked out. Now my diagnosis helps me tailor my diet for long term health and not just being thin. Most importantly I finally have the taste of pink Pep to Bicol out of my mouth!”
Other “success stories” from HTP:
- Erica: Positive Thinking in Real Life
- Ben: 120 Pound Journey to an Ironman
- Erin: Young, Strong, and Beating Distorted Thinking
- Tina: Two Pink Lines Motivated Her to Get Healthy
- Bo: A Man’s Healthy Tipping Point Journey
- Emily: A Slow Switch Helped Her Lose Nearly 100 Pounds
- Kayla: The Fear of Going Blind Motivated Her to Get Healthy
- Maria: A Gallbladder Stone Scare Showed Her The Importance of Real Food
- Dani: Learning to Run Through the Couch to 5K Program
- Maissa: Finding a New Outlet for Negative Emotions
- Freya: A Journey Out of Anorexia
- Carrie: Ditched Distorted Thinking and Ran a Marathon
- Amy: A Mom Who Lost Baby Weight and Became a Triathlete
- Jenny: Saw Lance Armstrong on Oprah and Decided to Ride a Century
- Lauren: Stays Active Despite Being a Busy Associate at a Financial Firm
- Beth: A Friend’s Serious Illness Inspired Her to Focus on Her Own Health
Did getting healthy allow you to recognize a previously undiagnosed health problem? Have you resolved a health issue by changing your lifestyle for the better? What’s the biggest reward when you focus on health over size?