Typically I am not a huge pusher of weight loss and dieting unless it is for health concerns. Coming from a chubby family that likes to eat good food, I understand that not all genetics lead to a size 0-2, or even a size 6.
That said, I have personally struggled with back issues and high blood pressure, related to being overweight, and so I have had doctor recommendations to try to take off a few pounds. Also, I just like feeling in shape and a more slender me is a happier me.
I don’t want to be skinny. But I don’t want to be fat.
I have never been bigger than a size 16, so I’m not morbidly obese (not that the BMI scale knows the difference – don’t trust that thing).
I’d love to be a size 6, but I’m not an athlete and I don’t eat like Hollywood, so I’m realistic. When my doctor said I needed to lose a few pounds I went for the goal of about 15-20 so I could at least get out of the plus-size clothing range and back to a healthier size 12-14.
Exercise Isn’t an Option
Due to symptoms caused by an auto-immune condition, and generally just being unhealthy, including migraines and extreme fatigue, I’m not big on exercise. I used to be a dancer (contemporary), but that was years before my back exploded and partially paralyzed me, leading to other drama. A lot of people have medical issues that make it impossible for them to exercise.
It’s much easier to lose weight and get in shape when you can simply add some major calorie burning with an aerobics class. Am I right?
As an alternative, I do take walks when I can, even if it’s walking back and forth in my living room. Just walking to my mail box gets my heart rate going so fast I can’t breathe. So the idea of getting on an elliptical or treadmill feels impossible right now. This makes food and eating my 100% focus when I need to lose weight.
In a family that likes to eat, the key becomes how to suppress appetite naturally and unlearn bad habits.
Stopping Cravings and Suppressing Appetite
If you can’t burn calories by exercise, you have to reduce them somehow. So for the rest of us who won’t be signing up for that gym membership, we will be eating fewer calories or less food. This is an extremely difficult task for many of us who like to eat, or who use fuel to overcome the sluggish feeling our illnesses cause. But here’s the thing, if you’re not burning calories by moving your body.
Your body doesn’t need all the calories you’re used to giving it.
For some of us, the way we eat has to do with the habits we learned growing up. “Clear your plate,” is the most common parentism that leads to this idea that you should eat everything on your plate whether you are hungry or not. This only works as a concept if you are an expert at portion-sizing, which most kids aren’t.
We learn to fill up our plate and finish it all.
Other bad habits might include snacking all day long to keep your energy level up. Even if you’re snacking on “healthy” foods, if you never give your body the chance to digest, clean out and actually move from burning fuel to fat, it’s going to be a bit harder to lose weight.
I found that stopping any cravings and suppressing my appetite is the easiest way to stop eating so much. You have to gain full control over your ability to choose what you put in your mouth and when. There are a lot of methods for doing that – hypnosis, stomach stapling, caffeine pills, and other diet pills are all of the unnatural ways to do it.
In the past I have tried some of the major diet pills, Hydroxycut and the like, but they had way too strong a dose of caffeine and were a nightmare for my migraines. I could just as easily live on coffee all day if I wanted to lose weight that way. I eventually found my way to a natural supplement that perhaps you’ve heard of called, garcinia cambogia.
What is Garcinia Cambogia?
Garcinia cambogia has gotten a lot of press in Hollywood as the miracle pill that helped actress, Melissa McCarthy, lose a lot of weight fast. It got a reputation as a fat-burner and something that just helps you shed fat, but that’s not really what it does at all. Because it’s not understood, it’s not being used correctly, and so it might confuse someone trying to find that healthy “miracle pill” – it doesn’t exist in that sense.
But that doesn’t mean it’s not miraculous and extremely beneficial when understood and used correctly.
To put it simply, garcinia cambogia is a natural supplement extracted from a fruit called Malabar tamarind.
It’s promoted as being able to suppress fat production in your body when used correctly, and hundreds of people have found it helpful in their weight loss journey.
The active ingredient in Malabar tamarind rind is called hydroxycitric acid, or HCA, and is said to boost fat-burning and suppress appetite by blocking the enzyme citrate lyase, which your body uses to product fat.
It is said by some that it also raises the serotonin levels in your brain and helps regulate blood sugar so you feel energetic without needing to eat. I definitely feel the effects of that when I take it regularly.
Just like any supplement, you have to use it properly in order to get the best results. I did a lot of research on what nutritionalists were suggesting for how to best use garcinia cambogia for weight loss. I found there are many people using it with success to lose weight or garner other health benefits from the supplement. I found it to be pretty effective myself.
My Personal Results
Following instructions, I started taking a three tablets (a 1600 mg dose) twice a day, on an empty stomach, 30 minutes before my two largest meals. I chose breakfast and dinner.
Taking it on an empty stomach was an extremely important part of my success. It allowed my body to fully absorb the benefits of the supplement and allow it to work. That’s why I felt it was best to take it in the morning after having slept all night, and in the late afternoon after working all day and before I eat.
Within 24 hours I noticed a definite reduction in my appetite and cravings. I started to have control over what I put into my mouth almost immediately. It gave me the ability to take a moment and decide whether or not I needed to eat and what I wanted to eat.
Taking advantage of my new feelings, I quickly switched gears. I cleared one full shelf in the fridge and the pantry, and filled them with healthier options. I told myself to only eat from those shelves.
I didn’t really change my diet because I still ate all the things I normally eat. I simply excluded the obviously unhealthy options like Twinkies, Oreos and Doritos, and got a few replacements like turkey jerky, yogurt and Planters nut mixes. I still ate burritos and tacos, I just dumped a lot of fresh pico and lettuce on them. These were adjustment I could handle without much thinking.
I didn’t pay attention to portion size at first, but I did pay attention to when I was eating. I didn’t snack all day because I wanted my stomach to have a moment to clear out before I took my supplements so I could get the most out of them.
I started my day with my supplement, ate whatever I wanted for a huge breakfast, a salad or Amy’s Organic frozen meal for lunch, supplement, then a huge dinner, often with dessert.
I’d snack for a bit a few hours after dinner, but I told myself to stop eating after 10pm and that was it.
These were things I couldn’t do before, but with the supplement I was feeling fuller, longer and really didn’t crave anything so not snacking all day became easier. I also stopped wanting to eat huge meals. I was able to give myself smaller portions and still feel full when I was done. I didn’t feel the need to continuously add to my meal, and I lost the desperation I usually have for something sweet.
I did not exercise at all
I was basically sedentary. Like, disabled person or 24-hour gamer sedentary. Once every few days I would walk down and up a flight of stairs to get the mail. I would vacuum once every other week, and do an occasional load of laundry or dishes when they were demanded. But even groceries I had delivered by Instacart, so really, no exercise helped me with this weight loss. Imagine if I added it in just a little.
I lost 15 pounds and went down a size in three weeks just by adding this supplement, and avoiding obvious unhealthy food options.
Within days I felt skinnier and my stomach didn’t jut out as much. And months later, I feel better, more energetic and have better digestion.
As a bonus, I do feel more energy throughout the day and less sluggish after meals. The effects on my blood sugar balance are definitely noticeable.
It’s not a fake, caffeine high, energy spike, but my afternoon crashes have started to improve and my overall energy level has gone up. For someone who lives with an autoimmune disease that carries with it extreme exhaustion, this has been huge for me.
I also became more regular in my bowel movements. I stopped needing stool softeners and just naturally have a bowel movement every day after my first meal. The irritable bowel syndrome that usually plagues me kind of just went away.
Long Term Effects
I have now been taking garcinia cambogia regularly for about a year. I did not continue to lose weight beyond my initial 20 pounds without additional work. But the pills did help me jump start and make dieting feel much easier to do overall.
I still don’t need stool softener anymore (something I used daily for years), and I still don’t drink coffee, but enjoy boosts in my energy.
My acid reflux has gone down now that I don’t eat past 10pm, but I think it’s also because my digestion is improved.
I have had no negative side-effects and will continue to take this supplement for the health benefits it has given me.
How Much Will It Cost?
You want to make sure you are getting 100% pure Garcinia Cambogia. There are some blends out there and you just end up needing a higher dosage of those, plus some are unnatural and don’t work.
You want a high-quality product that doesn’t have additives, but there is no reason to spend $50 per bottle, or even $25 really. For less than $10, you can get a natural supplement that works great. Just make sure you buy a U.S. brand, nothing from China.
The brand I use is called Purely Inspired, and I pretty much picked it because it has really good ratings and the price is the lowest for this level of quality. It is made in the U.S., which is comforting for health quality concerns.
I was very surprised to find that something so cheap worked so well. However, I am aware there are other higher-priced brands that are getting rave reviews on Amazon. I’ve listed all of them below.
Here are some other highly rated brands of 100% pure Garcinia Cambogia:
IMPORTANT: Don’t Fall for the Free Bottle Scam
I originally decided to try garcinia cambogia first by finding one of those subscriptions that lets you try it out for free. DON’T DO IT!
The small print will tell you that after 30 days they will automatically charge you somewhere in the range of $50-$100, depending on how much you order. They also don’t tell you it ships from China, and if you try to return it for the promised refund within 30 days it will cost you just as much to ship it back. I wouldn’t trust putting anything that comes directly from a factory in China into my body, anyway as their food laws are not as strict as ours. This is a huge waste of money because it truly isn’t that expensive just to buy the supplements from a reputable online retailer, like Amazon.
If your doctor has advised you lose a bit of weight, or even if you have personally decided you need or want to, I highly recommend using this booster to help.
Even if you’re just looking to get over the after-lunch crash and constipation blues, this is a good supplement to try.
Have you tried Garcinia Cambogia? Let Us Know What you think!
I’d love to hear about your results and any feedback you have. Please don’t hesitate to comment below.