Weight Loss Can Be A Side Effect Of Health
I used to be a coffee junkie. I always used skim milk, but I dumped in the sugar. After all, sugar doesn’t have fat in it; how could it make you fat? I gained about twenty pounds in college, but I wasn’t really looking for weight loss; I just figured it was a normal progression and resigned myself.
The Sore Throat -
About six months out of college, I developed a chronic sore throat. It came with a cold but didn’t go away. My general practitioners were baffled, and I didn’t have health insurance anymore, so going to a specialist was out of the question. I figured that the sore throat was just a new manifestation of the allergies from which I’d always suffered. I felt anxious a lot-about that and other things, living all on my own for the first time-but didn’t really make the connection.
The Herbalist -
Then my boyfriend, who had suffered from sinus headaches for years, went to see an herbalist recommended by a friend of his mother’s. He was already very interested in alternative medicine and was even considering going to school to become some sort of holistic practitioner, but I knew next to nothing about it.
I had this image of a shadowy shop with dried plants hanging from the ceiling and in jars along the walls, and someone who resembled a medicine man or witch doctor peering at me through wise old eyes. Turns out the guy wasn’t all that old at all-maybe the same age as my parents-and his office was located in a very modern office building.
The day I went to see him for my throat pain, I had a huge travel mug of coffee with me, and my pulse and heart, as usual, were racing. My stomach didn’t have butterflies-it was more like a swarm of bees. But this, at the time, was a normal reaction for me whenever I did anything new.
No More Coffee, No More Sugar -
The herbalist, a very straightforward, matter-of-fact and no-nonsense kind of guy, took literally one look at me and knew what was causing my throat pain-it was tight from anxiety. But he went through the motions-he took my pulse, scrutinized my tongue, had me describe the pain. He pronounced calmly that first of all I needed to stop drinking that coffee.
I didn’t think that was possible; give up the coffee I so dearly loved? My grandma used to give it to me to dunk toast and doughnuts in when I was little; it was part of me and who I was. But he was adamant. He could help me, but I had to work with him. I wasn’t allowed any caffeine for a while, but when I begged, he gave me oolong tea-no sugar, though.
The Side Effect -
For me, that was the key to my weight loss-cutting out the refined sugar. It wasn’t even as hard as I had thought. And I wasn’t doing it to lose weight-I was doing it to feel better. The weight loss was just a side effect!