The Magic Pill for Weight Loss | Lisa Steingold

The Magic Pill: How to Lose Weight for Good

Lisa Steingold on The Magic Pill for Weight Loss

Everyone wants a magic pill; myself included. My whole life I’ve been looking for “the magic pill” – the one that helps you create the life you want, grows your business, rids you of obstacles and most importantly the one that helps you get rid of ALL the weight you’re carrying. 

And guess what….after a long time searching, I actually found it; for weight loss that is. 

But it wasn’t what I thought. 

Before picture Weight loss

But first here's my story

Here’s a little piece from my book “Carbs Curves and Everything in Between”.

When I was really young, probably from birth to about age six, I hardly ate anything. My parents worried about me, thinking that there must be something wrong. My Jewish grandmother used to bring food to the house worrying that my mother wasn’t feeding me enough. My parents used to make me sit at the table for hours encouraging me to finish my food, which only resulted in me hating it more. I used to try to feed it to the dogs, squash it into a serviette or throw it away. Nowadays we all laugh and my family always says I’m making up for lost time with the size of portions that I eat.

From age six something changed for me as I began spending more time with my (other) German grandmother on her farm in the South of Johannesburg. There I lived some of my most precious memories including summer mornings outside, under the trees on the patio with the paper, my grandparents and the dogs.

I come from a family of matriarchs which means that granny always knew best. She always gave us coffee with cream and fresh rolls with butter and jam for breakfast; the things we were never allowed at home. I think it’s because coming from the second world war, she took pleasure in small but wonderfully delectable things like cream in one’s coffee. She certainly had no qualms about butter, sugar and fat.

In fact, every second day, my favourite dog, Santa would accompany me to the dairy down the road to fill up a five litre bucket of fresh farm milk with cream. I’d struggle to carry it back to the farm, but it was always worth it, because I knew from that milk would come custard and other delicious treats.

I loved those summer holidays. I’d spend my days with granny working in the fields, riding horses and swimming. Mealtimes were a break and an opportunity to relax and as much as granny was a terrible cook, oh how I loved those meals! Overcooked pasta with meat and salad or roast chicken followed by her lumpy custard were amongst my favourites. 

Although I was never allowed chocolate, white bread or coffee at home, being at granny’s house meant no holds barred. My sweet cup of coffee in the morning was a chance to start the day with a spring in my step, ready to ride as many horses as I needed to before granny was happy that we’d done enough to break for lunch.

What glorious days! It’s for this reason today that I love lumpy custard and that I love to start my day with cream in my coffee. I am more grateful to my grandmother than I can say. 

When I turned eighteen and stopped going to the farm so often, something inside me changed.  What happened to that beautiful, carefree girl? I think it was only from my 18th birthday which is also when I had my first period and started having sex that my food problems began .  started becoming obsessed with fat free food and trying to research the latest diet. I’d never had a real problem with my weight but as I turned eighteen I started padding up a little I t was around age twenty-five when I was at my heaviest, some twenty-something kilos more than I weigh today 

In 2003 when I met my now ex-husband, I was training almost seven days a week; running, cycling, weight training and swimming. I guess you would have called me a woman on a mission. I was training for Half Ironman. I was training more and more than ever before. I was in my twenties and you could say in the prime of my life, except I was heavy and I felt it.

I was always on some kind of diet. I was always training but also secretly eating. I’d eat litres of ice cream, full packets of biscuits, big bags of chips and trays of dessert. I’d eat pizza and burgers and chips. And then I’d feel bad. Really bad. 

Training and dieting and overeating and then feeling lousy about it. Over and over and over again resulting in a world of self-hatred.

In 2008, I ate my way through my divorce. Boy was I heavy! Just check out the Facebook group of Carbs and Curves to see the pictures if you don’t believe me. For the record I’m now in my forties and lighter and in much better shape than I was then, and have been for some time.

Every day I would stop at my favourite food store, on the way home from work and buy a chocolate pudding meant for four, with a half litre of custard. I’d drink the custard through a straw on the way home and after dinner, I’d eat the entire pudding. This was in addition to the daily slabs of chocolate in and amongst numerous twenty-kilometre runs. It was nothing short of madness. No one knew that I was trying to eat away my pain, they only saw that I was a slightly chunky dedicated runner and triathlete. If anything, they kept cheering me on.

I kept thinking if I could just train more, just do more, just eat less, just go further… I’d be thinner. Better. More acceptable.

But I never was. Not to myself, anyway.

Self-loathing overtook me. I hated every part of my body. 

With every diet, and the inevitable failure, I hated myself more and then I binged in secret. I never threw up. I just ate as much as I could and then some. Afterwards I would feel such a feeling of self-disgust that I would start again; more running, more dieting, more training and of course, more eating.

I was exhausted.

It was only because of my divorce that I finally ended up going to therapy and started to look at myself in the proverbial mirror. This journey back to me had begun and slowly, recovery started.

I realised that if I wanted to win the war on weight, I had to end the war with my body, and more importantly with myself…

Why am I telling you this?

So what's the magic pill for weight loss?

The reason I’m sharing my story is because I look better at 45 than I did at 25! 

If you don’t believe me, check out my Instagram profile. 

I want you to know that ACTUALLY there IS a magic pill. BUT it’s not what you think. 

In fact there are 3 magic pills for weight loss but they aren’t what you think. 

  1. Uncover what’s weighing you down
  2. Dig into your deeper story with food
  3. Create new habits

1. Uncover what’s weighing you down

There’s a reason why you eat. And it isn’t just because you’re hungry. 

I know when I’m stressed, my body expands like a blowfish. It’s as if it’s trying to protect itself. So even though my weight is pretty stable, when I’m slightly heavy, I need to uncover what’s weighing me down. 

If you had to pin point to a reason that you’re struggling with your weight UNRELATED to food, what do you think that would be? What comes to mind. It’s probably that, that’s weighing you down. 

Sort THAT issue out and your weight will stabilise as if by magic. 

2. Dig into your deeper story with food

How were your raised in relation to food?

If there was never enough, you may panic that there won’t be enough food so you’ll overeat. 

If you were constantly soothed with food, then you’ll be looking to food to comfort you as an adult. 

Simply knowing and understanding this story around food can help you shift your weight. 

3. Create new habits

You may hate me for this BUT if you want to shift weight, you’ve got to shift mindset.

And if you want to shift mindset, you’ve got to move your body.

People think they need to exercise to lose weight. NO. People need to exercise so they think differently so they start to feel better (chemically) so that they make new choices. 

Want to create new habits?

  • Exercise
  • Get up and make your bed – surprisingly it’s a miracle worker for other things
  • Get your hormones checked

Here’s what I know. Just because you’ve struggled with your weight your whole life, doesn’t mean you need to keep struggling.

Things can be easy. There IS a magic pill – it just isn’t one of those diet ones. 

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