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Dear struggling Fit-fam

N. F. Kenure

Once upon a time, I swore I would never diet.

I certainly did not want to be like those kind of people who say no to food because, calories. What kind of human being is obsessed with how much food they eat? Or to be more precise, is so obsessed with how they look that they don’t eat?  It’s just food, no big deal. Eat it! Food is awesome. How many pleasures can we really revel in, in this cruel life? Not a lot, and food is right up there with every single one of them. Yet here I am years later, taking note of everything that goes into my mouth.


The truth is, it’s not just food. Or food, what we eat, how we eat it and the subsequent relationship we have with our bodies is very important.

Yesterday a lady said to me, you are so lucky to be blessed with your body. Except, I wasn't “blessed”, I make sacrifices. Okay, that’s not entirely true. I am lucky that I don't particularly have a sweet tooth. I will have a chocolate bar or 10 every six months and forget about it. I’ll indulge in a sweet creamy dessert maybe once a month or a box of doughnuts and proceed to live like I’ve never tasted a doughnut before. I don't crave it, and will do well unless it shows up at my doorstep uninvited. I believe this is the worst part of trying to lose weight for most people. They can’t stop after that one indulgence. I wish I had a trick to help with this, unfortunately, I don't.  


I love rice, but this is what my plate looks like now.


I am really into food, proper food; rice, beans, pounded yam. Not so much the candy and the sweet drinks. Like everyone else who loves food, I have my own weaknesses, and what I do is face them head on. If I’m craving seafood pasta in alfredo sauce, I make it, take out a healthy portion, perhaps give away the rest then add fillers to my plate (carrot sticks and cucumbers). My belly is full and my taste buds are sated. Fillers work even for pounded yam and egusi. I eat the fillers, perhaps an apple and some peanut butter first, before settling down to my swallow. By the time I get to it, I can only eat so much.


I'm trying to work out a Nigerian based menu with concise measurements for friends who have been on their own weight loss journeys and haven’t succeeded. In my opinion, totally depriving yourself of the things you want almost always leads to failure.  Cleanses, detoxes and teas have never worked. To lose weight, you don't even need to exercise. It would be nice if you could, but not entirely necessary. How about try staying away from the daily bottles of stout( you know thyself)? How about you reduce your dodo portions? Also just drink water, don't do the bottle of coke with every meal. Look at your serving and ask yourself if it’s a healthy portion. You know it isn't.


Not everybody has to be fit or skinny, whatever your size is, own it. But if you want something else, you have to do the work yourself. If eating that laden plate of rice and moi- moi is an emotional reaction to other issues that leads to feelings of guilt, shame and insecurity about your body, that's a really tough one to over come. Still, find it in you to dig deep and change something. Get a partner, make a plan, and do one thing every day that's for the physical you.


Good luck.








Apr 3, 2019