|Elijah dancing with his buddies while Elmo coordinates a sing-along :)|
|Elijah smashing his "smash" cake for his birthday!|
|Family photo with Elmo - I am 30+ pounds heavier here than I am today|
I recalled my past - Cabbage soup diet. Tried it. Atkins. Tried it. Weight Watchers. Tried it. Sort of. Mostly I did them for a very short amount of time because I wanted quick results, and was discouraged when I didn't get them. I know that some of these may work for some people, but they didn't work for me. Although, I do think Weight Watchers is a great support system for people who need to lose weight, I also think if you have the drive, desire and commitment to lose weight, you don't have to pay a company $11 a week (or whatever it is now) to help you get there. Reluctantly, I can admit now that I've tried diet pills that I knew were dangerous for me. As soon as your heart starts racing to a point where you feel like you're going to pass out, you know you're not doing what's best for you. And no matter how much I wanted to lose weight, I didn't want to die trying. I want to be healthy - not skinny. Let's make that very clear. I know my journey to get to my final goal weight/size will occur slowly (but surely) because I'm not making drastic changes. I'm not "dieting" and I'm not looking for a quick fix. I realize that it took me years to put all this weight on, even though a large portion of it was during my pregnancy; therefore, it's going to take some time to take it off. I also realize that it's detrimental to my health and well-being for me to continue this journey.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), some of the leading causes of death for Asian or Pacific Islander women in the 25-34 age group (I am 31) is cancer (22.3%), suicide (14.5%), influenza & pneumonia (5.4%), heart disease (3.9%), and stroke (3.9%). The numbers don't seem very daunting, but they only increase with age. The leading causes of death for Asian or Pacific Islander women in the 65+ age group is heart disease (25.8%), cancer (22.3%), stroke (9.1%), and diabetes (4.2%). Throw in your family health history and it really becomes an eye opener.
In January, I asked my primary care physician to conduct a full blood panel on me. I wanted to see what deficiencies I had, and where I was at most risk. Thankfully, I was given a great bill of health - especially after dropping a lot of weight in a short amount of time. My blood pressure was excellent, my thyroid was regulated and I had no issues with blood sugar (diabetes), which I had during my pregnancy. I still felt the need to get this done, because I had found out, through my parents, we had a long history of stroke, cancer, heart disease, and even cataracts in my family.
I do not want to die at the ripe age of 63 like my loving nana (mother's father) did in Fiji when I was only seven years old. I do not want to die of ovarian cancer like my dadi (father's mom) did in her 70s, and I do not want to have two strokes in my early 50s like my father-in-law has. I know these are risks that not only run in my own family history, but my husband's and every Indian family I know.
I do not want to be a statistic.