Tuesday, December 16, 2003
Woman to Woman: Emotional Aspects Of Being Overweight
Most of us spend most of our lives on some sort of diet -- hoping to reach that perfect weight. Well for some women the constant dieting...the gaining and loosing weight can actually work against them, leading to an unhealthy state. I spoke with one woman who's spent most of her life overweight...she has a message for all of us tonight -- including me -- her little sister.
(WSVN) -- You gain some, you loose some, then you gain some back...women waging a war...spending most of our lives battling the bulge.
I can honestly say I have started and broken many diets in my lifetime, especially after the baby, I stayed with some extra pounds but there is someone in my life who finds it rather ridiculous to hear me say that I have to loose weight this is my sister Rosemary.
Beatriz asks, "Rosemary you've struggled most of your life with weight gain what has it been like?"
Rosemary Canalssays, "I guess since I was 13 I've been struggling with weight gain and I've tried every diet on the book."
Diets and diet pills -- some worked...just in time for her college graduation -- Rosemary lost 50 pounds -- but within a year she gained it all back. Then just 4 years ago -- Rosemary managed to loose weight again -- looking and feeling better than ever.
Rosemary says, "At one point you lost 50 to sixty pounds, thatís a considerable amount of weight how did it change your life and how did you feel? I felt much better, I mean you feel better healthwise and you definitely look much better the outfits look much better, I was able to buy suits I cant wear now and I loved it but not enough to keep it off."
And like many women for Rosemary its no longer just a matter of appearance...but rather an issue of health.
Rosemary is borderline Diabetic...her blood pressure high...and as I would find out during this interview...my sister who's humor I've always admired...is now filled with fear.
Rosemary says, "Well, I think I let it go so far, that it has affected my health, how so, bad...It's something that never bothered me before I mean, I was happy I must tell you the truth I've never had a problem meeting people and falling in love and being accepted the way I look but my health got so bad that I donít enjoy shopping cause my knees hurt, my blood pressure, I'm concerned all the time that Iím a walking time bomb because of my cholesterol and I'm scared for the first time in my life."
PsychologistDr. Christina Miller says, "You see depression, you see anxiety you see people who donít function very well daily because of what's going on because their weight is making them not feel well about themselves."
Dr. Cristina Miller councils women, like Rosemary dealing with weight problems -- she herself was overweight-- until 7 months ago when she underwent Gastric Bypass surgery -- she's lost 120 pounds. Cristina says a lot of the pressure comes from perception...the notion that we have to look a certain way to be beautiful.
Rosemary says, "We've always been taught that the slimmer you are the better looking you are without actually taking into consideration the health aspect of it."
A lesson learned the hard way for Rosemary -- a message she hopes other women out there hear loud and clear.
She says, "Any extreme is bad and people that just worry about the way they look I think that is not healthy, that is not good, I think that is not what we're all about but people that let go of themselves the way that I did and not worry at all pay the consequences sooner or later..."
Rosemary... now headed for surgery -- Gastric Bypass -- hoping her health will improve...and while she's nervous about the procedure...she still finds laughter amidst the tears. Now this is the Rosie I know and love.
Rosemary says, "I'll be borrowing your clothes..."
Beatriz responds, "Oh now, thatís your incentive..."
Rosemary says,"Yeah thatís it..."
Beatriz says, "Good luck Rosie."
Rosemary responds,"Thanks, I love you."
My sister underwent surgery just this morning and is thankfully doing well.
But she has a long recovery ahead of her -- and a major change in lifestyle because of the surgery.
Dr. Miller says if you're considering having Gastric Bypass...be sure you're doing it to improve your health and not just your appearance -- and keep in mind there's no turning back once you've had the surgery.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Dr. Christina Miller/Psychologist