The show featured British singer/television presenter Louise Redknapp on a quest to prove how unhealthy the size zero trend is. She put herself on a 30 day crash diet to try to reach size zero.
When she started out she was around 110 pounds, and a UK size 8. She had a 26 inch waist, 32D bust and 36 inch hips. So already, she started out thin.
The long and the short of it is she worked out for almost two hours a day including an hour of weights. She ate no more than 800 calories a day.
By the time she finished - she was a size 0.
She looked terrible. She felt terrible. The showed pictures of her from every angle. Not only did her weight make her look sickly, but her skin was yellowed, and her hair was gross.
She did this all under the care of a doctor - and halfway through even he was suggesting she quit.
The whole time I just couldn't believe how hard she had to work to get that small, and how many people are basically employed to look that way. It's painful to watch it actually happen, as opposed to just seeing someone who looks skinny you know?
I've been battling my weight since I was about 19 years old. That's when I lost about 60 pounds by basically exercising and cutting out all the soda I was drinking. At that point I suspect I was around 120 pounds... way too skinny for me. Naturally the weight came back on to where I was around 135/140.
While working at CJOB I was offered the chance to try Herbal Magic on a contra deal (radio term alert: Contra is where an employee of the station receives a free service in exchange for free advertising). By then I think my weight was getting closer to around 145/150. So I said, what the hell, it would be nice to drop a few pounds.
I quickly figured out, after my first consultation with Herbal Magic, that I was about to go on a starvation diet. Herbal Magic does not get any magic from all the pills they put you on. The magic is in the fact you barely eat anything.
Everything in herbal magic is based on "servings". Every day you get two servings each of dairy, fat, fruit, options (options can be something like ketchup or salad dressing, for example), starch and proteins. You got three servings of vegetables.
On the surface it sounds reasonable, but a "serving" of fruit on Herbal Magic was HALF a medium apple. So if you ate a whole medium apple, kiss all your fruit servings goodbye for the day. One slice of bread? TWO SERVINGS of starch.
In less than eight weeks I was down to 125 pounds and I felt like shit because I wasn't eating enough. I had no energy whatsoever. At that point, Herbal Magic was encouraging me to get to 112 pounds because, according to them and their research, that was the ideal weight for me.
When I resisted, they began to call into question my dedication to my health. Um? Yes, I am questioning my dedication to my health because I can't eat more than a slice of bread a day. I'm going eff-ing nuts. I eventually had to approach the sales person at the station and ask to get off the plan.
If anyone ever asks you to do Herbal Magic RUN AWAY SCREAMING AND DON'T DO IT.
I'm about 165 pounds now which is way too heavy for me, but thanks to my massive jugs and hips, I can hide it well. I need to get to at least 145 to feel good about myself - but I plan to do it the old fashioned way. Watch what I eat, work out, and live well. I can't expect to drop 20 pounds in eight weeks because it's not healthy or realistic. If I can get to 145 by May I will be a happy girl.
Getting into shape, losing weight, all of it take effort, real effort. You can't wish it away. You can't eat fat free everything and expect to wake up looking like Britney Spears. You have got to work for it. But when working for it means you can't eat more than 800 calories a day, you've got to ask yourself about your goals. Are they realistic? Can you maintain the end result? Will you kill yourself in the process?
I've done it all before. I've even done Weight Watchers (the best system out there, hands down). I know what works. More importantly, I know exactly what I've done that's worked against me and why I'm at the weight I'm at now. I know what I need to do, and I'm gonna do it the right way.
I don't want to be skinny, I want to be healthier.