How to transform your health using the ‘set point weight’ theory to find your natural healthy weight
The biggest problem relying on the scales to achieve your ‘goal weight’
The scales are probably still one of the most popular ways out there to control and manage weight related goals, and many a dream is placed upon said scales once that magic number is reached, ‘I will finally be happy, ‘I will finally go on that holiday’, ‘I will finally buy that dress’. But what happens when you don’t reach the goal weight, you get fed up with eating in a way that doesn’t actually satisfy you whilst trying to reach your goal weight, then start having finding that you can’t control yourself around food that is not ‘on your plan’, feel really frustrated, and you start to rely on the number on the scales to determine you mood for the day, happy when the number goes down when you restrict your food, and the complete opposite when the number goes up, wondering how you are ever going to get it together and stick your best laid plans to lose the weight once and for all!
The biggest problem with relying on a piece of glass or plastic telling you how to feel about yourself?The number on the scale does not actually determine how healthy you or how you should look, as we are all different, and what is healthy for one person is very different to the next determined by genetics, height etc. But it does massively affect your feelings of self worth and self esteem when you feel you are not the number you think are meant to be!So weight is not actually the best indicator of health both physically and emotionally, and there are more and more studies which show that health outcomes related to weight loss are linked with poorer health and increased long term weight gain rather than weight loss. For people that do reach their ‘goal weight’ it often still does not feel enough, and so the journey continues with ‘I’ll just lose another 5 pounds and then I will be really happy!’ So it’s a no win situation, the scales are really just an external way of controlling how you feel about yourself by the way you look, instead of listening to yourself to honour how you want to feel.
The magic of the ‘set point weight’ theory
Just like your shoe size is always going to be the same, the ‘set point weight’ theory teaches us that our body weight in adulthood is similar, we are genetically destined to have a range of weight within around 10-15% either side, that is perfect for our unique body so that it can perform optimally and be in optimal health. If we interfere with this range and forcibly increase or decrease it with various changes to our eating patterns, it will do everything possible to maintain that range by altering metabolism and hunger levels, proving that forcing your body into a weight it is not meant to be is simply not sustainable, it is unhealthy, and is miserable to try and maintain without feeling hugely deprived.
How to work out your set point weight
So how do you work out your set point weight? Rather than following a BMI scale and set of numbers, set point weight is found by following a set of behaviours over time, no scales needed! This will allow you to reach your natural health weight by simply becoming attuned with your body and listening to it and how it feels, rather than how it looks to determine your health. Look at the behaviours below to work if you in your set point range, over, or under it.
How do I know I am at my set point weight range?
Ability to consistently listen and respond to hunger and fullness cues.
Eating is effortless, enjoyable, and guilt free
Decreased preoccupation with food
Absence of restriction and overeating patterns.
Normal energy levels
Decreased emotional eating patterns.
How do I know if I am over or under my set point weight range
You regularly eat beyond comfortably full
You binge eat
You restrict and binge causing weight cycling
You regularly eat emotionally
You do not listen to hunger and fullness cues
How do I know if I am under my set point weight range
You regularly restrict your food intake
You ignore hunger cues
You use exercise regularly to specifically control calorie intake
If you feel you are currently not at your set point, start working towards applying the set of behaviours that will support you to reach it naturally. This is achieved through intuitive eating, an amazing and life changing 10 principle process that teaches you how to reconnect and trust your body again to enjoy all foods guilt free with variety, balance, and with attunement so that you can feel free around food and in your best health for the rest of your life!
Health at every size - linda bacon
Intuitive eating - Evelyn Tribole.