Has Oprah Really Won Her Food Battle?

19 Apr

I’m a big Oprah Winfrey fan.  I watch her chat show sometimes, read her O magazine, and just generally admire the success she’s achieved and the things she stands for.

And, let’s be honest, she’s done very well for herself!  What an inspiration she is in terms of business success, financial freedom, standing up for what you believe in, and much more.

And yet there’s always been one thing that I’ve found curious about Oprah; despite her wealth, her success, her adoring fan base and her strong belief in personal development and growth… she’s never seemed to get her weight under control.

There are some people who believe that looking good and staying in shape is easy when you have money – you can afford delicious high-quality meals that are also good for you, and even afford a team of people to cook those meals for you.  You can have nutritionists and personal trainers on call 24/7 to make sure you’re eating and exercising as you should be, and there’s always lipo if that’s too much work.

And yet Oprah proves all of those people wrong, and proves my own personal and professional belief: weight loss is usually not about food, but about mindset.

Oprah herself would agree with this.  She’s an open fan of The Secret, a book and DVD that promotes a belief that what you focus on, you attract into your life.  Everything happens for a reason.  Everything that happens to you is happening to serve some purpose.

And with such an outwardly perfect life, Oprah has still battled with yoyo weight loss.  She’s heavier, then she’s thinner, heavy again, thin, gaining, losing…

And now, in her new edition of O magazine, she has made a bold claim that her battle with food is over.  She says this because of reading Women, Food and God by Geneen Roth:

“The way you eat is inseparable from your core beliefs about being alive. Your relationship with food is an exact mirror of your feelings about love, fear, anger, meaning, transformation and, yes, even God. But it doesn’t stop there. Geneen shows how going beyond both the food and feelings takes you deeper into realms of spirit and soul to the bright center of your own life.”
(Amazon.com book description)

I read Oprah’s bold statement and asked myself an obvious question:

Do I believe that Oprah has now ended her battle with food?

Well, I clearly can’t answer that question as I’m not psychic.  What I can say is that she’s on the right track by taking the focus away from food and looking inward.  My own clumsy guess, as someone who hasn’t (yet – it’s on my goals list) met Oprah, would be that she is carrying scars from her difficult childhood and has somehow transferred dealing with those issues on to food.

But I didn’t write this post to solve Oprah’s problems, or predict whether she will fall off the healthy eating wagon… I wish her well and take her at her word, as I do every client of mine who may or may not have attempted weight loss before.

Instead, I wrote those blog post to say yet again that weight loss is almost never about knowledge.  If you are overweight and are telling yourself that you just don’t know which foods to eat and which to avoid, you’re most likely kidding yourself.  We all know that apples are better for you than chocolate, we all know that fizzy pop is less healthy than water, and we all know that fast food isn’t a vital food group.

The truth is: you don’t need an amazing diet programme to lose weight.  You don’t need a miracle exercise class.  You don’t need magic slimming pills.  You don’t need surgery.  You don’t need that amazing new book.

You already know everything you need to lose weight.

Everything you need to succeed is within you.  And for many people, the journey to weight loss lies in confronting emotional issues and breaking the habit of comfort eating.

You can do it.

I wish you, and Oprah, the best of luck for fighting those food demons.

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3 Responses to “Has Oprah Really Won Her Food Battle?”

  1. Josie April 20, 2010 at 11:08 pm #

    I’m a big fan of Geneen Roth’s work, so I’m glad Oprah is reading it – though I’m not familiar with that particular one and will be interested to have a closer look.

    Josie 🙂

    • glyco247 April 21, 2010 at 7:29 am #

      Thanks Josie, I haven’t read this book yet either (only excerpts) but it seems to be causing quite a stir so I’ve ordered it.

      Hope you’re well!

      Katie xx

      • Josie April 21, 2010 at 9:44 am #

        I’ve ordered it as well, look forward to reading it. Yes I’m well thanks, hope you are too.

        Josie xx

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