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to think that for some obese people, its not their fault, and surgery is a really good option?

(283 Posts)
NotMyBigFatFault Mon 05-Dec-11 17:07:14

I weigh 17 and a half stone. I am 5 foot 3. Size 22.

I am hungry most the time. I wake up with a hunger, I have breakfast, cereal, or toast, or something else if I am on a proper "diet" (done them all - Atkins, Lighterlife, Slimming World, Weight Watchers, Cambridge, calorie counting, etc). By 9am I am hungry again. By 11am I am ready for lunch. By 1pm I am ready for more. I could go on but my obesity is not driven, in my opinion by greed (which would be eating way beyond which one is hungry) but by hunger. Genuine hunger for perfectly normal, even healthy food.

I know this is not the case with all obese people. But for quite a few it is.

I remember begging my Nanny to commence lunch proceedings at 11am one day. I was absolutely ravenous. I just wanted that sandwich so much. I could; have eaten 10 of them. I was 4 years old and had no idea what comfort eating was - I knew what tummy rumbles were, though.

My dad has never felt properly full. He stops eating, because he knows he'll get really really big if he doesn't, but he always has a knawing desire to eat. He exercises plenty of self control, which is why he is about 18 stone, not 27 stone, or 32 stone, or 36 stone and dead.

My mother has been on the dieting merry-go-round all her life (well, since she was 9). She has always been hungry. She doesn't actually eat particularly large portions, she's a bit of a picker, because she feels nauseous if she gets properly hungry due to medication she is on, but I can put way more away than her, though I try not to, as I am always on a diet. Being on a diet most the time and only breaking it when I can't stand it anymore is what keeps me at 17 and a half stone. I'd weigh more if I didn't exercise this level of self control. Its driven by fear for my health and vanity.

I recently sought weight loss surgery, looked at options, decided on either a Gastric Bypass or Sleeve Gastronectomy (gastric sleeve), and saw an eminent consultant, who approved me for surgery. The surgery will be funded privately by myself. We decided on the sleeve. The procedure cuts away the fundus part of the stomach, reducing your stomach size to 25% of what it was, but most importantly, removes the part of the stomach which is responsible for secreting Ghrelin , reducing that knawing, all consuming and unrelenting hunger that makes some obese people, well, obese. Its keyhole surgery under general anaesthetic.

I go on bike rides, walks, I do trampolining, dancing, the gym, enjoy the great outdoors, and running about with my kids. I am reasonably fit considering my size.

AIBU to think that obesity is not all about "greed", lack of self-denial (we are talking a lifetime, by the way, not a few weeks), "junk food", or "lack of exercise"? Is there anyone out there who thinks, actually, this is not my fault ?

Crosshair Mon 05-Dec-11 17:10:13

I think theres often many, sometimes complex reasons why people are obese. I dont think that surgery is an easy option and feel awful that people sometimes need to go to such extremes for a better quality of life. sad

rabbitfeet Mon 05-Dec-11 17:11:03

I don't buy this. If you ate weetabix all day you wouldn't be a size 22. Take responsibility for your own decisions.

HowToLookGoodGlaikit Mon 05-Dec-11 17:12:08

If it was just a case of will power & "eating the right things", there wouldnt be an obesity epidemic.

Before surgery, would hypnotherapy be an option? Paul McKenna or Slimpods? Both are anti-diet, and work to reprogramme your thinking about food & overeating.

Crabapple99 Mon 05-Dec-11 17:12:32

reactive hypoglucoma ( very probably spelt wrong) Hunger is caused by overeating. Overeating destabalises blood sugar, leading to high, then low, then feeling revenous, then overeating all over agian.

Takes time, but this is a pattern you can break.

Good luck

chrimblycompo Mon 05-Dec-11 17:13:36

have you thought of having breakfast at 9am? often I'm not hungry wheh I wake up
you could have 'breakfast' whenever you want

if you're eating museli and toast at 7am and feeling hungry by 9am just eat at 9am

try just cutting out 1 thing at a time, those 6 biscuits with a cuppa always get me blush

debka Mon 05-Dec-11 17:13:38

I really hope it works for you, OP. Best of luck.

<carefully avoids answering question>

GypsyMoth Mon 05-Dec-11 17:13:49

You would if it was full fat milk and sugar on it!

This hunger thing. Is it actual 'hunger' or can it be something else?

HowToLookGoodGlaikit Mon 05-Dec-11 17:14:38

It is still your fault though, you dont get obese by eating salad all day. Take some repsonsibilty or else even your surhery wont work. It is easy to stretch the sleeve.

HecateGoddessOfTheNight Mon 05-Dec-11 17:15:08


There is a difference between fault and responsibility.

Fault is so negative. It's pointless to beat yourself up like that

but responsibility - is it your responsibility to limit the amount you eat and are you responsible for being fat if you don't? Yes, you are.

You have to accept that you just can't eat as much as you want to. Even if that food is 'healthy'. The reality is that if you take in more calories than you use, you will put weight on and that is your responsibility.

Now, there are many reasons why people do. greed, emotional distress...

but you are still responsible for the choices you make.

I had a sleeve gastrectomy. I ate myself half to death because I was trying to fill a painful emotional void with food. It physically hurt, this hole, and the only way that I could deal with the pain was to eat.

Was it my 'fault' that I was so fucked up that eating meant more to me than living? No. I was ill.

Was I responsible for what I was doing to myself? hell yes.

If you are always hungry, then get yourself checked out. If there is nothing medically wrong, then look into counselling. But you may just have to accept feeling hungry, or accept that trying to avoid hunger means you will stay fat.

-btw - I thought my pain was hunger. It wasn't.

squeakytoy Mon 05-Dec-11 17:15:24

The more you eat, the more you want to eat.. but it is what you eat that causes the problems.

If you stuffed yourself with veg and smaller amounts of protein, you would get full, but you wouldnt put much weight on.

If you know that you want to eat all day, you drink loads of water, and you munch on grapes, celery, fruit, and not bread, cake biscuits.

debka Mon 05-Dec-11 17:16:05

crabapple that really rings a bell with me. I was like that- been doing Slimming World for 2 months now and my diet has really changed, much lower carbs, v low sugar and I feel so so much better for it and rarely hungry.

OP try eating protein for breakfast? I have bacon and eggs and some fruit every morning and it fills me till lunchtime (I am a size 24 BTW so no skinny mini).

NotMyBigFatFault Mon 05-Dec-11 17:16:38

@ Rabbitfeet. 2 weetabix has 137 calories. 14 serves a day would have me gaining weight at a rate of 1 pound a fortnight.

I'd be hungry every 2 or so hours.

There are 24 hours in a day.

I'd also be malnourished eventually due to lack of protein.


NotMyBigFatFault Mon 05-Dec-11 17:18:41

"If you stuffed yourself with veg and smaller amounts of protein, you would get full, but you wouldnt put much weight on"

@ Squeakytoy I might not put much weight on, but that's pretty much what I do now, though I don't stuff myself in that I am never really full, and have tried to do eggs for breakfast etc too (and Dukan diet, Atkins, etc) but I don't really lose more than about 10 pounds, then I halt. Once for 6 months.

Its not really an "answer", as such, though granted lower carb does produce a bit of a hunger reduction, but not enough to reach a healthy weight, or even just "overweight"...

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Mon 05-Dec-11 17:20:22

There's something wrong with what you've posted OP. If you've done 'Slimming World', where you can eat as much as you like of certain foods, including plenty of protein - and you crave healthy foods as you've stated. How come it doesn't work for you?

I think that some people are genuinely more driven to eat more often - that's not their fault, it's not a 'fault' at all - but control is needed if there aren't to be insurmountable health problems later on.

tardisjumper Mon 05-Dec-11 17:21:59

I kind of get what yo are saying here. I have a massive appetite and my family all have massive appetites. Soem have weight prosb through overeating.

However, I am careful and I am nine stone at 5'2''. I have to constantly watch my weight and just be uncomfortably hungry sometimes though.

I think some people just don't ahve the appetite some people do.

debka Mon 05-Dec-11 17:21:59


I think OP I agree with Hecate.

You are responsible for your weight and your diet. I don't think you are taking that responsibility.

fuckityfuckfuckfuck Mon 05-Dec-11 17:22:58

Hecate is spot on about fault and responsibility. For the most part, if you follow diets properly, they work. Not that I'm a big fan of diets, but yes if you follow low carb, it works, it's not a case of the diet failing after a few weeks, generally it't that you get fed up, give up and think it's too hard. It is so easy to blame everyone but yourself when you're overweight. I was 15 stone and convinced I didn't eat much. I was kidding myself, and was very very unhappy.
How's it going hecate? I remember when you had it fitted, seems like many moons ago.

GypsyMoth Mon 05-Dec-11 17:23:59

Slimming world is the worst. The message it gives, 'eat as much as you like' and 'free' foods is wrong!

SucksToBeMe Mon 05-Dec-11 17:25:07

I'm always hungry too! I go to bed planning what I'm going to eat the next. I agree that it is really not easy. I am on the Cambridge Diet as I can't control myself otherwise.
Good luck OP

Nancy66 Mon 05-Dec-11 17:25:28

I don't agree that you couldn't help it - you could - you could have stopped shovelling food into your mouth on an hourly basis

But, for some people obesity surgery can provide the answer. I do think you should have to pay for this yourself though - which you may well be doing.

onefatcat Mon 05-Dec-11 17:25:29

The more you eat the hungrier you feel.
I know when I have been out for a huge meal, I always feel more hungry the next day. All the overeating has probably stretched your stomach.

theDudesmummy Mon 05-Dec-11 17:26:51

As noted above, maybe just have to accept feeling hungry some of the time if you want to lose weight. Being hungry does not mean you have to eat. You don't have to eat whenever you are hungry. Just be hungry. You won't die. Eat what you are supposed to on whatever diet you are on and then ignore whether you are hungry or not. Do something else. It sounds like you are very obsessed with food and hunger. That is the real issue.

NotMyBigFatFault Mon 05-Dec-11 17:28:39

I do limit what I eat. I exercise self restraint all the time. I am hungry most the time. This is how I maintain 17 and a half stone.

I can get to about 14 and a half with extreme hunger and self-deprivation for a few months and maintain it by slightly slackening off (reintroducing about 100 calories a day). To maintain that I am hungry about 80% of the time, never fully satisfied and still obese.

Which is why I sought help.

NotMyBigFatFault Mon 05-Dec-11 17:29:46

@ Onefatcat its insulin that is causing the rebound hunger the next day.

(I have a qualification in nutrition)

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