Hunger cure

Uni­ver­sity sci­en­tist’s plan de­ac­ti­vates ap­petite— so you drop up to 30 lbs in 14 days

Woman's World - - THIS WEEK IN A WOMAN’S WORLD -

On a very or­di­nary morn­ing not long ago, Su­san Gaynor grit­ted her teeth and strug­gled to climb into the shower. It had be­come so hard to ma­neu­ver her 281-pound body that she was winded as she fi­nally re­laxed in the hot wa­ter. I need to hurry, she thought, bend­ing to grab a wash­cloth that had slipped to the floor. In­tense pain shot through her knees; she had to stand and brace her­self. As the cloth swirled in the wa­ter near the drain, dread set­tled over the New York nurse. I might not be able to pick it up, she re­al­ized. Su­san’s mind flooded with images of pa­tients bedrid­den and un­able to care for them­selves be­cause of their size. She imag­ined her­self trapped in her bed… trapped in her body. “No!” she said. “Please, no.”

Su­san felt shaken as she kissed her hus­band, Jeremy, good­bye and left for work that day. How did I end up here? she asked her­self. For decades, she’d fought her weight fiercely with di­ets, pills, work­outs. But thoughts of food were con­stantly in her mind, cre­at­ing a hunger she could never con­trol for long. Her weight had soared. She de­vel­oped ter­ri­ble arthri­tis and pre­di­a­betes; her blood pres­sure shot sky­high. Still she ate. She’d have chips, a bur­rito, beer, flan— and go out for ice cream af­ter­ward. A nor­mal weight seems im­pos­si­ble for me, she thought. But maybe I could get down to 200 pounds? Maybe that would be enough.

Des­per­ate, Su­san joined a weight­loss sup­port group she’d heard about called TOPS. The idea was that other mem­bers would en­cour­age her and help trou­bleshoot any plan she chose. New friends Melinda and Kath­leen sug­gested she con­sider Bright Line Eat­ing, so she started read­ing the e-book. Each page left her stunned. This is why I overeat! she thought. And this is how I can stop…

A new be­gin­ning

Su­san learned that a big part of Bright Line was eat­ing in a very sim­i­lar way at ev­ery meal— re­peat­ing the same nu­tri­tious pat­tern day af­ter day. Even­tu­ally, this pat­tern would be­come in­grained and au­to­matic, so in­stead of end­less de­ci­sions about what or how much to eat, she’d just do what she al­ways

did. The book promised it would help si­lence con­stant thoughts of food.

To make it feel eas­ier, she would also avoid any food with flour or su­gar. The neu­ro­sci­en­tist who wrote the book ex­plained that many of us are so sen­si­tive to these highly pro­cessed modern in­gre­di­ents that they ac­tu­ally dam­age brain path­ways, lead­ing to hunger that’s nearly im­pos­si­ble to sat­isfy. “No mat­ter how much pizza or cake I have, I al­ways want more,” Su­san shared with her TOPS group. But could she go cold turkey? They urged her to take it one meal at a time.

Her first “bright” break­fast was oat­meal, berries and cot­tage cheese. Lunch was tuna salad on cu­cum­ber slices and an ap­ple. Dinner was chicken, veg­gies and avo­cado. “I feel great,” she said to Jeremy that night. In the days that fol­lowed, she did have rough mo­ments when she was hun­gry or full but still want­ing more. Her TOPS friends urged her to sip hot tea and hang in there, vow­ing it got eas­ier. They were right! In the next few weeks, Su­san dropped 11.8 pounds. My face al­ready looks slim­mer, she thought, smil­ing at her re­flec­tion in the mir­ror. And my con­stant urge to eat is gone. This is work­ing!

Amaz­ing suc­cess

As weeks be­came months, Su­san’s meals didn’t change much. When she did add some­thing new—like nut but­ter or flour­less crack­ers—“if it re­ac­ti­vated the food chat­ter in my brain, I’d know to avoid it,” she re­calls. “As long as I did, I was only hun­gry when it was time to eat.” Pounds poured off. In nine months, she dipped un­der 200 pounds and kept right on go­ing. She came off blood pres­sure meds, nor­mal­ized her blood su­gar and no longer needed arthri­tis meds or cor­ti­sone shots. “I even got rid of my sleep ap­nea and CPAP ma­chine!” Down 138 pounds in all, Su­san still can’t quite be­lieve it. “Bright Line does have rules that you al­ways fol­low. I tried bend­ing them a bit, but the food chat­ter re­turned. So I just fol­low the plan—and it’s ac­tu­ally so lib­er­at­ing. Ev­ery­thing about my eat­ing is black-and-white so I can live the rest of my life in color,” says the 57-yearold. “I was over­weight even as a kid. This is the first time in my en­tire life that I’m at a healthy weight!”

To learn more, check out Bright Line Eat­ing or visit Bright­li­neeat­

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