About five years ago I did the [redacted] program which promotes waiting for a physical indicator of hunger such as your stomach growling, a hollow feeling in the stomach, etc., then eat half of what you normally would eat and no food is off limits. If you want to eat something before your next “growl” you are told to run to God instead of food. Exercise and eating healthy is discouraged because then you are accused of relying on something outside of God for your weight loss and want to do things your way. During that 12 week class I lost 29 lbs; the first week I lost 12 lbs but I “cheated” because I Just ate mostly veggies that week. I gained a good part of the weight back because 1. I got tired of waiting up to 12 hours before I could eat again and 2. I didn’t go to the advanced part of the class which involved a lot of fasting. I also didn’t want to pay another $120(?). Also there something kind of creepy about the founder of that program.
…and I won’t lie. My heart skipped a beat, and I’m actually a little emotional about this. (Perhaps I’m a little bit emotional about a lot of things. I’ll be that, dang it.) This literally snatched the breath out of my chest.
I wanted to publish my response to this because I want it on the record. The for-serious, 100% real deal record.
This right here is a scam. It’s not about God (whatever God applies, here.) It’s not about experiencing hunger. It is absolutely about control… and swindling people out of their money.
I’m going to break this down – piece by piece – so that you can understand what a scam genuinely looks like, and hopefully protect yourself in the future. It’s one thing to seek out a support system that’s providing guidance into nourishing yourself mentally, physically and spiritually… it’s another thing entirely to be scammed into group starvation.
About five years ago I did the [redacted] program which promotes waiting for a physical indicator of hunger such as your stomach growling, a hollow feeling in the stomach, etc., then eat half of what you normally would eat and no food is off limits.
The idea that a person who is experiencing hollowness in their stomachs… would be able to eat only half of what they’d normally eat, especially considering how the person likely had an issue with portion control in the beginning… is astounding to me. If the body is hungry, it means that it is in need of nourishment. The body is delivering a vital message – “I am in dire need of nourishment.” Trying to interfere with the body’s ability to obtain that nourishment when it’s right in front of you is a struggle that even I would have difficulty with.
Secondly, the idea that “no food is off limits” is so bizarre. Weight loss programs use this line – a LOT of them use this line – because it ALWAYS reels in the people who say things like “I want to lose weight, but I want to lose it by eating what I eat, not that rice cake crap you eat.” (As you all know, I don’t eat rice cakes. They taste like styrofoam and are too processed for my taste. Just wanted to put that out there.) You know, the people that don’t realize that the problem is “eating what they eat.” Not only does this program not promote proper nourishment of the body your God gave you, but it doesn’t even care about that. It cares about getting you skinny. It’s starvation for skinny’s sake.
If you want to eat something before your next “growl” you are told to run to God instead of food. Exercise and eating healthy is discouraged because then you are accused of relying on something outside of God for your weight loss and want to do things your way.
There are two elements to this – the first being that this is another draw. This is another way to entice you into thinking that you’ll experience simple weight loss that doesn’t require you to add any activity to your life or, really, change anything about what you eat and how you eat it.
The second is that if you exercise and eat healthily, you might realize that you don’t need to pay into a big program to teach you that this is the answer. Banning you from doing what you’re supposed to do forces you to rely solely on the program to lose… so when you come off the program and gain the weight back, you’ll go back to the program so that you can lose again! It’s forcing your success to depend upon them.. which guarantees that they’ll have your repeat business.
During that 12 week class I lost 29 lbs; the first week I lost 12 lbs but I “cheated” because I Just ate mostly veggies that week.
Approximately 30lbs in 3 months… approximately 10lbs each month, but lost 12lbs in the first week. Somewhere, the body realized that there was starvation play taking place, and decided to make it more difficult for you to burn energy. Somewhere along the line, your metabolism slowed down. Somewhere along the line… your body said “Enough! If she won’t feed me, I’ll minimize the amount of energy (read: calories) I can burn each day, so that I don’t dwindle away to nothing!”
As a side note, I love that she cheated and ate what she is supposed to eat. If you are someone who lives a mostly processed lifestyle, the conversion to clean eating will bring dramatic results… and depending upo how much weight you have to lose (I’m talkin’ upwards of 100lbs, here), you absolutely can lose 10lbs the first week. The fact that this was coupled with starvation makes me uneasy, but I love that there’s a realization of “I experienced this success because I ate the way I’m supposed to eat.”
I gained a good part of the weight back because 1. I got tired of waiting up to 12 hours before I could eat again
This is the problem with dieting. We take on temporary habits to lose the weight, only to find out that they’re unsustainable in the long run. Even if one could eat only every 12hrs, think about it – think of all the family functions, business functions and goodness knows what else you’d have to avoid knowing full well you’re hungry? Waiting 12 hours to nourish yourself sounds like a bunch of binging waiting to happen.
I didn’t go to the advanced part of the class which involved a lot of fasting.
Again, more unsustainable habits. Fasting for spiritual purposes… nutrition takes a back seat. I don’t love it, but I can respect it. Fasting for weight loss purposes? You’re walking backwards.
I also didn’t want to pay another $120(?). Also there something kind of creepy about the founder of that program.
So, each level of the class is $120? Word? I wonder how many repeat participants there are in a class that teaches unsustainable weight loss methods and creates co-dependency that prevents you from being able to live or function without it.
See, the thing that really took my breath away about this program is the fact that she said, “Exercise and eating healthy is discouraged because then you are accused of relying on something outside of God for your weight loss and want to do things your way.”
Depending upon your beliefs, the methods of exercise that we know of today are reflections of the ability that we were all given. Hippocrates said, “Let thy food be thy medicine, and let thy medicine be thy food.” Our system works that way because the food that is meant to nourish us is also meant to heal us. As someone who believes in a higher power, surely that cannot be a coincidence. If you believe everything of this Earth – not of man, like manufactured food – comes from a God, then a “weight loss ministry” that says anything different simply cannot be of your God. Period.
I mean, you have to do some mental backflips to come to a conclusion that says anything different.
Regardless of whether you believe in creationism (the belief that God created mankind) or evolutionism (the belief that we’ve evolved from lesser beings), you have to believe in the evolution of the society in which we live. We didn’t always have cars, and we didn’t always have processed food. Once upon a time, walking was vital. We don’t do much of that anymore. Once upon a time, cooking was vital. We don’t do much of that anymore, either. You have to believe that a society that evolved to make minimal activity possible… could result in weight gain.
That being said… this program completely abandons common sense and practical history for the sake of making money… and people are eating it up.
It’s one thing to desire a support system, rooted in spirituality to help each other through the struggle of learning how to live healthier. It’s another thing entirely to join a cult pushing harmful and unsustainable habits that cause you to jeopardize your health. I know that I say this all the time, but its absolutely important to always put our health first because of all of the bajillion ways we can lose weight, only a small handful can produce permanent results without risking our well-being. Use your better judgment: if it seems wrong, it probably is.
That being said.. I know that someone may know or be able to identify what group the comment is referring to… and I’d prefer to keep their name out of the comments. This isn’t the only “ministry” that pushes this ideology, and while I don’t want to slander any groups, I do want to encourage readers seeking spirituality in their journey to “eat with one eye open.”
Do you have any experience with these kinds of groups? What are your thoughts?