Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Nutritionist: Love Your Tree

I had my third session with my nutritionist today. I've found the sessions to be super helpful and we discuss topics and issues that go far beyond my initial issue. We often have really interesting discussions about body image as well.

My nutritionist is like a therapist for food and body issues. She asks prompts and lets me vent and just talk about food issues, body issues, and anything else slightly related. I never thought that just talking about these issues would be helpful and, even if talking doesn't result in any physical changes, it's been a really good experience. Just being able to open up freely without holding back or worrying about judgment has been so immensely freeing.

Today, my nutritionist shared this wonderful youtube video from the lady who wrote the Vagina Monologues. I must have been in a vulnerable and emotional place because as I watched this during my session, I became all teary-eyed at the beauty and message behind the sentiment.

In case the embedded video doesn't work, google "Love Your Tree."

I've really been trying to focus on loving my body for what it can do rather than what it looks like. This is really hard and I continue to struggle every day. But... baby steps.

On top of letting me talk through my issues, my nutritionist gives me good advice about what I should be putting in my body and how to make myself more healthy.

Today she did a test on me involving a machine that sends a pulse of some magic invisible substance through my body and then spits out my results on a little piece of paper. From this paper, my nutritionist was able to determine the health of my cells, my body fat, and my metabolism. This machine was so freaking cool.

So, the results: because I live off of relatively low amount of calories, my cells are not getting the nutrition that I need. As a result, I have the cells of a 40 year old lady. My cells are ten years older than me! My nutritionist encouraged me to eat more essential fats which will make my cells "younger" and healthier.

I only have 11% body fat. This isn't just "stored body fat" that most people measure, this is TOTAL fat and includes the healthy fat that is needed to protect vital organs and important stuff like that. Apparently, a healthy range of body fat for me would be 18-22 percent. Ooops. While this sounds really awesome to me, it is not healthy. This is entirely my problem. Where I want to be body-wise is not necessarily healthy. It's going to be really hard for me to balance being healthy and happy with my body. Right now, these two things are at odds.

Finally, my metabolism is 1600. This means that, if I do nothing, my body will burn 1600 calories per day. This is how many calories I need for my body to function. Apparently this is a little on the low side but not too bad.

One of the other benefits to nutritional therapy is being able to get a good, objective sense of where I am in terms of health and weight. Women are so harsh and critical of ourselves and I am no exception. Getting an educated, honest opinion is so refreshing and helpful. She's so positive and friendly and caring. I wish I had the courage to do this ten years ago.

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