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How a Nutritionist Lost 20 Pounds

By Heather Carey

How did it come to be that someone who has extensive training in nutrition and whole foods cooking carried around an extra 20 pounds?

Life gets in the way, which led to years of (survival) mindless eating. It started something like this: the marriage that led to the unexpected twin pregnancy, then another pregnancy right on its heels, all while finishing up a master’s degree in clinical nutrition.

My years in between then and when I lost the weight were rarely about me. What did they want to eat, how can I make everyone else happy, what did they like were the daily questions. It was about them.

I did other things. I ate in response to my feelings rather than my hunger. Food (especially sugar and salt) made my crazy life with three very young kids seem manageable – temporarily. Then back to the routine.

And then, something shifted. I had an aha moment when I turned forty. My father died when I was very young from cancer. As I was nearing the age he was when he had passed away, I felt very strongly that I did not want to be responsible for a future health issue I might cause myself because I was carrying this extra weight. I needed to surpass his last age in the healthiest way possible. I needed to do that for myself. It was my wake up call.

Knowing how to make healthier food taste good is a skill I am incredibly grateful for as I had that working in my favor. My attitude about family dinners changed a great deal. Vegetable heavy, nutrient dense, delicious meals were the order of the day. Checking in with myself daily and asking myself why am I eating (Hungry? Bored? Lonely?) was, and still is, of supreme importance. I listen to my intuition, and it wins every time.

I lost 20 pounds and have not gained any of it back. I changed my attitude, embraced the skills I needed and became extremely mindful of my food. I became mindful of me.