Sunday 19 June 2022

The key to losing weight both for owner and cat!

Important note: this is not a lecture. I have no right to lecture anybody. I'm just passing on what I believe as it may help somebody. If it helps one person so much the better. If it helps one cat the same benefit applies. Everyone should have the courage to pass on what they learn if they believe that it is useful to others. Note 2: It is very satisfying to lose weight and maintain a correct BMI. That's a motivator and you'll feel better and good about yourself.

After years of managing and stabilising my weight as an old man (going on 74) and avoiding a pot belly, I think, this morning, that I have figured out the key in one sentence to losing weight and stabilising it. And this key must also be applicable to the domestic cats that we look after them. 

It is as simple is this: you have to feel hungry and you have to feel that hunger for an hour or two a day daily before you eat. And that should apply to every meal you eat. If you use that trick - and it requires self-discipline to quite a high level - you will lose weight and eventually stabilise it. Guaranteed. What percentage of people in the West only eat when they are hungry? A very low percentage is my guess.

Pic: Pixabay.

And if your cat feels hungry, they will be less picky. I am not advocating that you starve your cat. Far from it. I'm just advocating that you should ensure that both cat owner and cat go hungry for a while. My belief is that if you feel hungry you are then ready to eat. If you delay eating when you feel hungry you will burn fat. Fat is a good source of energy. If you don't satisfy that desire to eat which you obviously feel when you are hungry the body turns inward and starts to burn fat as energy.

And when you eat you should still feel a little bit hungry when you finish eating. In other words, you should stop eating when you want a little bit more. This, once again, requires quite a lot of self-discipline. There is no escaping the need for self-discipline when losing weight and stabilising weight. But you can't overeat after you have been abstemious in your diet otherwise you counteract all the hard-fought gains.

There is a natural propensity for elderly people to put on weight. This is because their metabolism slows down but they continue to eat at the same level they ate at when they burned more energy and their metabolism was faster. It is about habit formation. If you don't eat until you are hungry and if you delay eating when you are hungry for an hour or so you create a new habit. Little by little it requires less self-discipline but it will always require a certain amount of self-discipline.

We need to impart that self-discipline to your full-time indoor cat who ends up eating for pleasure. We all know that people eat for pleasure which is entirely understandable. I am very sympathetic because I eat for pleasure too. However, the pleasure I get out from not having a big pot belly is greater than the pleasure I get from eating! And that probably, too, is another key to keeping your weight down.

Ultimately, if you enjoy eating more than you would if you were slim then you won't be slim. You will put on weight to the point where you become desperate enough to stabilise it. And this is the irony of being overweight.

People who are overweight often don't keep on putting on weight. They stabilise at an obese level so why not stabilise at a slim level! Stabilising at an obese level requires a certain amount of self-discipline because you aren't putting on weight anymore and therefore you have cut back on what you're eating. Why not lose some weight and then at that point stabilise it by eating a bit less?

But ultimately, if you want to lose weight you have got to be hungry and you've got to get used to being hungry for a short while until you satisfy the urge to eat.

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