I wasnít looking some overly zealous calories sneaked up
behind me and overcame my willpower. Why is it that modern women
are expected to be skinny anyhow? Actually, Iíve never seen a
woman with a beer belly, although I have seen a few that looked
as if they spent a bit too much time grazing at the local food
"NOT ME," I vowed. "Iíll
never let myself get THAT out of shape!"
I said that right after emptying my bank
account to spend a year of my life in the company of my new chum
and best friend, Jenny Craig. Jenny and I were bosom buddies as
long as I was spending money. I bought her overpriced,
prepackaged frozen dinners, her mini granola breakfast bars, her
tiny cans of soup, and her tasteless packages of snack food.
She enthusiastically encouraged me to continue
to lose weight and to take vitamin supplements, purchased from
her, of course. I lived in dread of the day I could not swallow
another guiltless chicken sandwich or consume another soy-laced
ground beef patty without choking.
Actually, the food didnít seem THAT bad. I
was so determined, and so fat, and so HUNGRY. I actually began
to like broccoli without butter or cheese and to imagine that
yogurt was even better than ice cream. Shows how desperate I was
to be skinny, I guess.
It was easy, TOO easy, to lose weight with
Jenny and her diet plan. As long as I stayed on her diet, the
pounds just melted away. I tried to forget about my bank account
that was also melting away and just to think of the positive
result of some day reaching my weight goal.
Itís a nutritionally balanced, totally
controlled diet, and you donít really get THAT hungry. You
only get hungry for greater variety, for sweet foods, for thick
juicy steaks and restaurants.
Why is it that the body craves the foods that
are not good for us instead of those that are? And why are
supermarkets so full of the wrong stuff instead of the right
stuff? Just try to find rice cakes! And why, oh, why are all the
commercials on TV for sizzling fast food that practically makes
your stomach growl just looking at it?
The theory is that when you reach your goal
weight, and bid Jenny farewell, you will have developed a new
eating style based on healthy choices and proper portions. You
will continue to choose tasteless, low calorie selections.
Should you (heaven forbid) happen to gain a few pounds, you will
come running back to Jenny for emergency counseling and a few
weeks of recover with her overpriced, cardboard gourmet
Thatís the theory. Unfortunately, it
didnít work that way. Oh, it did for a while. I was so proud
of myself, a mere wisp of my former self. I could get back in
all my clothes again and zip the zippers. But how sick I was of
lettuce with diet dressing and all the other fat-free
selections. I continued to eat my daily servings of fruit,
yogurt, and vegetables and to take my vitamins. Trouble is, I
began to sneak a sweet dessert, or a bun with butter, or maybe a
snack after dinner. Little by little I slipped back into my old
fattening ways while I continued to think I was thin.
Then one day I could no long zip my jeans.
Funny how all my garments suddenly seemed to shrink from just
hanging in the closet. But the final embarrassment was when I
realized that even my underwear was getting too small.
So, do I learn to love my fat and accept
myself the way I am, 20 pounds over my ideal weight? Or do I go
on another diet and lose it - this time forever, of course -
never to be gained back again. Do I continue to gain weight
until I can no longer fit into the rest of my clothes and simply
puff up and float away like the Goodyear blimp, or do I diet
until I lose enough to be able to stand myself again? I get
hungry just thinking about it.
"Jenny, old friend, have you abandoned me
in my hour of need?" Of course not! She sends me cards all
the time so I wonít forget her. I can visit her just as often
as my checkbook wants to. I gotta think about this one. Either
itís buy more clothes or buy Jennyís food. Iím afraid
either one will be an investment of gigantic magnitude. I know
there are other, less expensive alternatives - but Jenny makes
it SO easy!
Get my food bags ready, Jenny! Open the door
wide and warm up the digital scales! Iím on my way!
Copyright 2003 Sheila Moss