A New Beginning  

Fat people and how they get that way

There seems to be a stigma at the gym that all fat people eat too much. Wow! Are these people in the stone-age? I did some investigating and there are many factors to weight gain.

Yes, some people eat too much but maybe there are things in their life that is creating this.


Many people reach for food to help ease the stress. But, of course, this doesn't work in the long run. The type of food that one chooses makes a big difference. If you eat a bucket of fried chicken….you will look like a bucket of chicken. Food is a temporary fix because it does not deal with the real stressors that must be addressed in order to reduce the trigger for eating and fix the problem.

Lack of Sleep

When you're tired, you also don't handle stress as well, so you may reach for food as a coping mechanism. Further, you may be taking in extra calories from late-night snacking. Some people think eating might help them get back to sleep, but all it really does is add more calories to their daily total.

Gaining Weight because of Medications

Some prescription drugs used to treat depression, mood disorders, seizures, migraines, blood pressure, and diabetes can cause weight gain, from a modest amount to as much as ten pounds per month. Some steroids, hormone replacement therapy, and even oral contraceptives may also cause gradual weight gain. Your medicine cabinet might be the cause of your weight gain if you've gained five or more pounds in a month without a change in your lifestyle.  According to experts, it’s important to remember that a few extra pounds may be well worth the trade-off of what a particular medication does for your overall health. Even if your medications are the cause of your weight gain, you still need to be mindful of eating a healthy diet and getting regular exercise.

Medical Conditions

The most common medical condition that causes weight gain is hypothyroidism. A deficiency of thyroid hormone can decrease metabolism, causing appetite loss and weight gain. Much rarer is a condition known as Cushing's syndrome,  a disorder caused by an excess of the hormone cortisol,  that can also result in weight gain.


Women reach menopause at a range of ages, but most are in midlife and are often less physically active than when they were younger. Along with aging comes a natural slowing of metabolism. At the same time, hormonal changes can trigger hunger, depression, and poor sleep. When women go through menopause, they lose estrogen, causing their shapes to change -- usually a loss of hip and thigh weight. And they start to gain more in the middle. Estrogen favors fat deposition in the lower body, and when you lose this hormone, fat is more likely to be deposited in the midsection (much like men). This "spare tire" around the middle has been not so affectionately called the "menopot."

The Starving Fat Person

These are the people who don’t eat enough. Their body thinks they are starving and holds onto everything that the person eats. Most starving fat people get through their day running on coffee. When they feel hunger, they stuff something easy and accessible down their throats and keep going. At the end of the day when they are done running around, they sit down and eat a big meal. This is not good as by this time it is evening and the body has no time to burn anything off.

Well, I am the ultimate starving fat chick! I spent many years working construction where we stopped at McDonalds for a Egg McMuffin and coffee and off to the job site for our work day. Some days I would catch the lunch truck for a not so healthy lunch or just skip lunch all together. After a full day on the job site, it was "stop for a few pints" and home for dinner which usually consisted of a meat product, a few veggies and lots of potatoes slathered in butter or gravy. Yummmmmm! After I got injured at work and was no longer active but I still ate this way - probably out of habit or the lack of food knowledge. I gained and gained and gained.

With the Weight Watchers Program that I am on now, I seem to eat and eat and eat and I still can’t reach my food point goal. My choices are healthy ones though and I feel more energetic. This is not a diet……it is a lifestyle change.

Exercising has helped me to sleep better, focus better at work and lose weight.

This week’s accomplishment – I lost 4 pounds!

So to all the folks out there who think all fat people eat too much and that is why they are fat, please keep your rolling eyes and whispers to yourself. We are at the gym trying to make a change. Why else would we be there?

Have a great week team and remember - eat well, sleep well, exercise and...be good to YOU!

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About the Author

Jan, the 411 Directory administrator for Castanet, has committed to being part of the Castanet team for the Global Fitness Get it Back, Give it Back 2013 fitness wellness challenge.  Her goal is to achieve "a healthier way of life!"

Here is Jan's story:

I used to be fit and very active when I was young - playing sports, hiking, rock climbing, biking - anything just because. I stayed active up until I was in my 30’s. After a number of bad injuries at work, kids, stress, bad relationships and life in general, I found myself at a life killing weight of 424 lbs! I could barely move and had no quality of life. Scary!! So, I moved to the Okanagan because this is where I was always happy and active, and a year and a half later I am down to a mere 300 lbs. and really ready to Get it Back ……life that is!

With the opportunity I have received from the “Get it Back Give it Back 2013”, I have started my upward climb to a better way of life….a healthier way of life! Follow me in my 12-week journey, through my new exercise regime, hopefully taking away good ideas and perhaps helping you through yours.

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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