Do not envy the "before and after" pictures: the sharply dropped kilograms can return with a vengeance
Categories: Healthy lifestyleBy Pictolic https://pictolic.com/en/article/do-not-envy-the-before-and-after-pictures-the-sharply-dropped-kilograms-can-return-with-a-vengeance
Seven years ago, British Harriet Jenkins was recognized as the woman of the Year by the Slimming World company. But just a few weeks after the final of the competition, Jenkins began to gain weight again. Recently, she and several other winners of this competition starred in a documentary for Channel 4, which explains why it is so difficult to maintain the result after a sharp and radical weight loss.
Harriet Jenkins watches a seven-year-old video with her participation: she is standing on the stage, dressed in a small black dress and pearls, her blonde hair is beautifully pulled back. Her name sounds, and she gasps in disbelief as the audience is torn apart by applause. It looks like it's an Oscar ceremony, and the woman really looks like a star. At that moment she was: Jenkins, a teacher from Southampton, became a celebrity in the world of dieting and weight loss — the woman of the year according to Slimming World.
Jenkins' height is 172 centimeters, she used to weigh 165 kilograms, but in 15 months she lost 95 kilograms, changing from a size 30 clothes to a size 10.
However, just a few weeks after the competition, the weight began to return. Although now the woman does not name her exact weight, she has clearly gone very far from the tenth size. Jenkins is one of the heroes of the movie "Superpowder" for Channel 4.
These people have won the largest and most famous weight loss contests, but most of them have re-gained almost all the dropped kilograms. According to experts, about 40% of people who manage to lose a lot of weight (lose up to 120 kilograms), return to their previous weight or even gain more than before. And it's not just about extreme diets: 30 million people try to lose weight every year, and 10% of them get fat again within three years.
Harriet Jenkins before losing weight.
Tired of the comments of others about her weight, Jenkins and a friend took part in the Slimming World program. "I liked losing weight. And when you like a lesson, you want to continue it. I wanted to become the thinnest woman of the week and month. A competitive spirit has awakened in me. I have dreamed of looking slim for many years."
After 15 months of the diet program, the woman succeeded, and she was made a representative of the Slimming World program. But just a few weeks later, Harriet began to gain weight again — according to her, at about the same rate at which she had lost weight before, that is, six kilograms per month: "I'm pretty sure it's because I've been eating too much."
Another winner of the weight loss contest, to whom the weight quickly returned after the reporting photos, is 59-year-old Jane Hall from Lancaster. In 2012, she won the Rosemary Conley competition, dropping 50 kilograms in two years. "The year after the victory was great. The trip to the store dragged on for an hour: everyone wanted to talk to me, compliment my appearance and tell me how I inspired him to lose weight."
However, after the contest, Hall gained 30 kilograms out of 50 lost. "When I lost weight, I was sure that I would not go anywhere and see anyone if I returned to my previous weight. But it's happening so fast. When you lose kilograms in a famous competition, you start to feel famous. You see yourself everywhere: in local magazines, in national newspapers, on radio and on television. I participated in the Hairy Bikers cooking program, and they came to visit me for lunch.
In the same year, 50-year-old Leroy Wilson, a DJ from Hampshire, was recognized as the champion of weight loss: a man 193 centimeters tall lost 107 kilograms in 7 months and was going to lose another 18. Wilson's weight was so much higher than normal that doctors warned him about the risk of a heart attack.
"I buried a friend who weighed as much as I did. He died from not doing anything with his weight. Then I thought that I could have been in his place. I had a short mantra: do it or die. And it worked."
Losing pounds, Wilson seemed to be starting a new life: "I was able to run up the stairs again. I could play squash for two hours. I was skating and playing hockey — and it was incredible."
Three years ago, a photo of a slender handsome Wilson in a black suit was printed on the front page of LighterLife weight loss magazine, and now he weighs 146 kilograms again. In part, this was influenced by blood disease and taking steroids, but there was another reason — Wilson "lost focus".
"Having lost weight, I became something of a celebrity. I received a lot of grateful letters from strangers, women began to be interested in me. But at the same time, there was something strange about being slim after obesity. The attention of others deprived me of a sense of security."
Perhaps this is one of the reasons why people who have lost weight gain weight again — the way they perceive changes in their appearance. Jane Ogden, professor of psychology at the University of Surrey, explains:
A person who has lost weight can return to old habits gradually.
Tracy Mann, a professor of health psychology at the University of Minnesota, says that after a sharp weight loss, it is almost impossible to maintain the achieved weight:
Dr Thomas Barber, an endocrinologist at Coventry University Hospital, says there are evolutionary reasons for weight gain after losing weight:
Barber continues: "After reading this, you might think: "Then why should I monitor my diet if I gain weight later anyway?" But a smaller part of people are still able to keep fit after losing weight." One of these heroes is 31—year-old Daniel Wheeler from Surrey, who was on the cover of Men's Health in 2012. Wheeler, with a height of 193 centimeters, lost weight from 139 to 88 kilograms.
"I lost weight with any diet, but none of them was suitable for long-term use: they had too many restrictions."
Instead of dieting, Wheeler became interested in healthy habits and fitness: he began to avoid processed foods and train hard. In two years, he lost 51 kilograms and as a result quit his job in marketing, becoming a personal trainer.
Professor Mann claims that this behavior is typical for those 10% of people who manage not to gain weight again: "They, as a rule, continue to train for at least an hour every day. Maintaining weight becomes their most important life task."
So, does it make sense to limit yourself to eating if the pounds still come back? Professor Mann says there is nothing wrong with the "inefficiency" of diets:
Leroy Wilson, whom we talked about, is sure that he will lose weight again: "I know that I can lose weight again. I can no longer imagine myself as huge as I was."