Tis’ the Season

Oh, wait that was last month. Well in fact, there is another season- actually two seasons that begin in January that are of interest to me. The first is red carpet season: This is when the People’s Choice awards, Golden Globes, Screen Actors Guild, Sundance, and last but not least, The Academy Awards take place. I am sure there are many more that I can’t remember or just don’t care about but this is a good start.

The second season is dieting season. It’s the New Years resolution to lose weight and get healthy- well usually, it’s just about losing the weight and not just the average 8 pounds that most Americans will have gained by now but also the last years 8 and the year before that 8 and on and on. I call it the “creep.”

One of the best tricks to learn about maintaining weight is that at the first sign of the two or three pound weight gain- pull it back! Go back to basics! Don’t let two pounds become five which becomes 10 and so on and so on.

I think a lot about body dysmorphic disorder simply because I think I have it. Although I am now a thin person, I used to be morbidly obese and weigh in at 80 pounds heavier than I am now. So, when I look in a mirror, I still see that fat kid that no one wanted to play with. So think of body dysmorphic syndrome (BDD) as my mother would say, “you have fat eyes.”

My BDD gets in the way of my training too. Shane, my trainer tells me that I am the only client of his who he has to force to eat more. He is killing me with all the food he wants me to eat because I am so conditioned to seeing a number on the scale and if it deviates, I freak out. But, I have been training for 6 solid months five days per week without missing once, even while traveling and I weigh more now and look thinner than I ever have. And I am slowly starting to eat more- right Shane- baby steps for me in that regard.

I can’t resist the Golden Globes and the red carpet to see just how skinny and Asian everyone has become- seemingly only the women of Hollywood- but take a closer look at the men: the cheekbones are always a little more defined and where’s all the grey hair???? No one seems to age, yet, I give kudus to them because they fit into the version of BDD. People tell me I never age and I used to think they were just being nice to me; but I have to tell you that I went back to look at older pictures of me and it’s true- the hairstyle may be different but I do look almost the same.

It’s because I take care of myself and I will tell you the same thing I tell my patients: it’s because I follow my own advice. I eat right 95% of the time and exercise. Just ask my trainer, Shane. We were having this discussion the other day during that little snowstorm that wasn’t. I was the only client of his that didn’t cancel. I have no excuses. Granted, I am a doctor who proselytizes about health and fitness- so I feel it’s part of my job to look good. But everyone is looking for that magic bullet this time of the year and I am hear to tell you that there just isn’t one. It’s called perseverance, determination, and letting nothing get in your way.

I am starting to think that I don’t have BDD but that the rest of America does. How can 70% of all Americans think it’s ok to be overweight? Haven’t they looked in a mirror? I was watching Medium last night and the district attorney’s campaign manager (he is running for mayor) was morbidly obese- it was extremely difficult to watch. Don’t get me wrong, this is my job to help people lose weight and I love my clients. I just don’t think it should glorified on television so that it appears I say it, normal. It’s not normal and it’s certainly not healthy to be obese or overweight. And don’t let me get started again on Mike and Molly.

When people stop me on the street to ask me why my dog look so healthy and skinny, I can’t help but wonder: “what has America become?” Remington is perfect with ribs that you can feel and a waist line- that my friend is what dogs are supposed to look like. Not obese littler versions of ourselves. He doesn’t eat table food or grains of any kind. He eats raw, organic food and is a supermodel beagle. So I beg to ask the question: When did being skinny become something pejorative??????

So, I have decided now that I have almost finished writing this, that America suffers from BDD, not me or my dog. Being thin is where it’s at. And here is one way of getting there.

A patient asked me yesterday how I can stand all the “stuff” going on in the world. I told her it was something very simple. I ignore it. I do my charity work and I focus on my career and I watch mindless television. I buy the paper to do the crossword puzzle and throw the rest away. It is easier to stay focused on what is important to me. As Bobby from Cougartown knows: Just keep the cliff note version of current events in your mind; keep your head clear and focus on what’s important.

Isn’t it time you stopped yo-yo dieting? Or going from one program to the next? Don’t you want to stop waiting for the Holy Grail of diet books to be released? Because let me tell you there isn’t one. The answer is really quite simple: eat less, exercise more and eat real foods. No sugar, no wheat, nothing processed by man or as minimally processed as possible. Fresh, local, seasonal and possibly organic if that is available. Here’s the secret- KISS (keep it simple stupid)

Until Next Time…..