Thursday, December 13, 2007

Stuffing, Starving and Sleeping

I either stuff, starve or sleep. That’s how I have always dealt with emotions that make me uncomfortable. I stuff myself with junk food until the serotonin rush kicks in and I feel better, or I starve myself until the hunger gives way to euphoria and I can just float through life OR I just go to bed for hours at a time and hope that I will be able to handle my life when I wake up (note to self: more on sleep as transformation in another post).

I’ve been reading a lot of other posts lately on various blogs talking about your body’s natural set point for weight: about how it REALLY IS POSSIBLE to feed two people the same average calorie intake and they can still maintain wildly different weights. There was at least one study done that found people who dieted down to “normal” weights from “obese” weights did NOT subsequently have the same chemical makeup as “normal” people: they had the chemical makeup of people who were starving, even though their weight was normal. (I’ll see if I can find the link; if so, I’ll post it here.)

A lot of that makes sense to me. I know for a couple of years I gained weight eating 800 calories a day, and exercising for an hour, 5 days a week. Today, I eat a lot more than 800 calories, hardly ever exercise (although I’m trying to get back into the habit, because I just feel better when I do), and weigh about 30 pounds less than I did then. (And I haven’t started taking thyroid meds, or had weight-loss surgery or any of that stuff.) Even a slowed-down, starvation-style metabolism can’t account for a weight GAIN during the 800-calorie period. But the total embrace of a “set-point” doesn’t account for the fact that after several years at the same weight, and without really trying, I dropped 30 pounds, have kept it off for several MORE years, and that recently I have started dropping weight again without really trying.

I’ve done a lot of reading on energetics and all that woo-woo stuff, though (which I totally believe in, so I’m allowed to use the term “woo-woo”), and one of the things I’ve read over and over regarding weight is that our weight (whether over- or under-) corresponds directly to the things in our lives and psyches that we don’t want to deal with.

Yeah, yeah, I know: DUH.

But it’s not really a “duh,” because in the energetic world, it’s not a GENERAL correlation (like, “When I’m stressed, I eat and that’s why I gain weight”) – it’s a specific one (like, “My parents were unloving, so I unconsciously padded myself to keep from breaking”). There’s a reason we call it “emotional baggage:” we literally are carrying it on our bodies, and the more “baggage” we have around a certain event, the more weight we lose when we resolve that event. I have to admit that I’ve found any sustained weight-loss for me correlates directly with dealing with emotional issues that I had buried for years: anger at individuals, fears about my life, etc. When I’ve resolved those – and I mean REALLY resolved them, not just intellectually understood them – the weight just falls off, until I hit the next plateau and have new (old) issues to resolve.

So I’m thinking/wondering if/almost convinced that our “set points” aren’t really about calories or genetics* or the food we eat. Our set points are determined by how much of our life we’re hurt by and how much of that hurt we haven’t let go of. It’s inheritable because we internalize our families’ fears and beliefs (even when we think we’ve “gotten over” them, we usually haven’t – sometimes we have, but not always).

I think it’s an interesting proposition. I know that in the past, it’s been true for me. And I also know that sometimes finding what issue it is that I’m holding on to is incredibly hard: sometimes because I don’t want to deal with it, and sometimes just because there are SO MANY issues that it’s hard to pin one down, LOL. But I’ve noticed that when I make peace with stuff, I drop weight. When I re-own things, I gain weight. And what I’m putting in my mouth (or not, as the case may be) seems to have very little to do with it.

*I’m also of the opinion that we sometimes inherit family issues on an energetic level, not just a learned level, and that our genetic makeup is related to our soul-genetics, so to speak. In other words, if you believe something strongly enough, it will affect your body, up to and including your DNA, which you then pass on to your kids (along with the belief/fear). If the kid resolves the belief/fear, the DNA may or may not re-alter, but either way their odds of getting sick from it are pretty much nil.
I told you I was weird. You were warned. ;)

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