weight management

Metabolize This!

We tend to think of metabolism in purely physiological terms.  I’d like to help you broaden your view of metabolism a bit.  I invite you to think of metabolism as information processing.  Let’s take the act of eating, for example.  We can think of eating in purely physiological, metabolic terms… or we can think of eating as an informational process in which an act of tasting is an act of knowing.

I describe this Info-Experiential view of eating in my book, Reinventing the Meal, but here’s a similar perspective from Dr. Hari Sharma, MD, a Western trained proponent of ancient Vedic approaches to healing:

“When the taste receptors first experience the different taste and textural properties of a meal, an enormous amount of information is delivered through the body (primarily through the limbic system), triggering basic metabolic processes.”

“The body eventually metabolizes the molecular constituents of the food, but it first metabolizes the sensory experience of taste.”

“Long before the food is digested, its influence has spread throughout the body.  A delicious meal is more than a treat; the taste can be nourishing in itself.”

“The body metabolizes the emotional content of every experience that it has,” writes Dr. Sharma.  And that includes the experience of taste.

In sum, to taste is to experience, to experience is to feel, and to feel is to know.

Metabolize this!

Weight Management Motivation Booster

What is inoculation?  Inoculation introduces an organism to a nominal threat with the purpose of hardening the organism.  Motivational inoculation is a series of challenges (in the form of questions) that help crystallize intrinsic, fail-proof motivation.  Here’s some motivational inoculation for weight management.

Inoculation 1:   What is my stated motivation for this weight management attempt?

Inoculation 2:   Have I tried to lose weight for this reason before?  If yes, then on what basis do I believe that a reason that wasn’t strong enough for me to stick to the plan before would be sufficient this time?

Inoculation 3:  is my reason to lose weight for me or for somebody else?  If for somebody else, then what reason will I have to keep on track if my relationship were to change with this other person?  What if my relationship ends?  What if my relationship stabilizes and he/she no longer cares how I look, how much I weigh? What reason will I use then to stay on track weight-wise?  And why am I not using that reason now?!

Inoculation 4:  Is my reason for this weight management project situational in nature?  Am I trying to lose weight so that I look good at somebody else’s wedding?  Shine at a school reunion?  Get a date?  Competitively snub somebody else?  Am I trying to impress random minds on a spring break beach?  Is my weight management attempt part of my seasonal body-transformation as I get out of the “weight camo” winter clothes into a more revealing wardrobe?  If so, what will help me stay on weight management track when the situation changes?  And why am I not using that reason now?

Inoculation 5:  Is my motivation for weight management in line with my definition of psychological health?  Is my motivation for weight management in line with my life-values, my priorities, my spiritual/existential compass?  If not, why am I misguiding myself?  What would be a motivation for weight management that would express and extend the rest of my life-values and life-priorities?

Inoculation 6:  Would I be comfortable making my motivation for weight management public?  Would I feel at all embarrassed or ashamed if I had to acknowledge my true reason for weight management?  What would be the motivation/reason for change that would help me feel psychologically healthy?

Inoculation 7:  Will my reason/motivation last a life-time?  If not, what is such reason?  What would be an open-ended motivation for weight management? What would be the motivation that would withstand any change in circumstance?   List such reasons.  Use them.

Ask, ponder, inoculate.  Or run the risk of running out of motivational gas…