QUESTION: Hi! I was wondering if you could help me with something. I know a lot of Latinas have a problem with their weight, coming from a heritage with a lot of delicious and greasy foods. The problem with me is that I gained a lot of weight because of an accident I had when I was 12, which left me in bed for three months with no physical movement at all. I am 22-years-old now and I recently weighed myself and was shocked to find out that I now weigh 308 pounds! I was recently weighing in at 320. I try my best to lose weight but it’s just not possible for me to lose more than 15 pounds. Because of this I have fallen into a deep, deep depression. I feel as though I’m the ugliest person in the world. This has led me to stay home all the time. I’m afraid to go out and face the world because I have really low self esteem. I don’t feel pretty at all. I can spend weeks in my room laying in bed, depressed, because I feel so ugly. I was wondering if you could post this and get me help as to how to diet to lose more weight and what I can do to feel better about myself. Thank you so much.
AMANDA’S ADVICE: I am so sorry to hear about your accident! The good news is that you’ve taken the very first step to a new you and that is to acknowledge and pinpoint the root of what may be causing the weight problem. Having a healthy body requires that you have a healthy mind. So what I would do first is to find some resources, a group or an individual that can help you cope with the depression.
I would love to see you join a gym or start taking some classes such as Zumba. These classes help you work up a sweat, get your heart rate going and they are so much fun. The ones at the gym I work out at are usually crowded. Once you feel comfortable and remain consistent with the classes, I would seek the help of a trainer and get started on a workout plan that includes weight training and a cardiovascular program.
As far as eating…you are absolutely right about our heritage and all the greasy foods! So now that you know this, it is up to you to make better eating choices. Limit the greasy foods to once or twice a week, and the rest of the week go for healthier recipes. Eating smaller meals more frequently has helped most of my clients, as well as myself, lose tons of weight. Load up on GREEN vegetables and limit your sugar intake…this includes fruit!
Hope this helps you get started! Oh, and buy yourself some outfits you feel beautiful, confident and comfortable in to wear to the gym. When you look in the mirror take a glance at yourself and remember where you’ve been, where you are, and where you want to be, as far as goals!
Amanda Genao, Fitness Expert
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