I had a problem. I came up with a solution. The solution was wildly successful. Was I right? Not exactly.
When you have an answer to a question, you can be right, you can be wrong, or, somewhere in between.
I thought my problem was that I couldn’t stay on a diet because of my anxiety. So I treated my anxiety and lost weight. What I actually found was that although it was true that anxiety kept me from being successful on a diet, anxiety was the reason that I was eating too much in the first place. Once my anxiety was reduced, I lost over 100 pounds and didn’t even need to diet.
What I thought was the problem
I weighed over 400 pounds most of my adult life. When I would try to lose weight, I noticed a pattern develop that would derail my diet every time. It went like this…
Step 1 – Fight Off Anxiety
Begin a diet. On Day 1, deal with an avalanche of anxiety. Worry constantly about never being able to eat what I want again. The vast majority of my diets didn’t make it to Day 2.
Step 2 – Temporary Success
If I manage to struggle through all of the anxiety, a few days go by and a new routine of less food and sometimes more exercise is established. The scale shows a big initial weight loss and I feel good, for a while.
Step 3 – Anxiety Returns
Then something happens…
- Go on vacation. Forget about the diet. Come Back. Return to Step 1.
- Eat more during the Holidays. The Holidays are over. Return to Step 1.
- Go out with friends. Eat. Return to Step 1.
- Don’t lose weight one week. Ask what’s the point. Have a big meal. Return to Step 1
- Etc., etc., etc., Always back to Step 1.
I decided that my anxiety was keeping me from successfully staying on a diet. I started looking into anxiety remedies. At that time, I couldn’t find any natural remedies that seemed safe. I didn’t want to take prescription anti-anxiety medication because it seemed too powerful, addictive and had weight gain as a side effect. So, I tried to focus on diets that I thought would produce less anxiety and tried to be aware of my anxiety while dieting. It helped a little but I was stuck in the same pattern just at a slightly lower weight.
Eventually, I heard about CBD.
My CBD Solution
CBD was supposed to help with anxiety. It was legal, non-addictive and low doses seem to work better for anxiety. I decided to try CBD to treat my anxiety and then go on a diet.
My idea was that if I took CBD for my anxiety, I would lose the anxiety that comes with dieting and be able to lose weight.
The Way it actually works
This is when I discovered that my anxiety was the reason I was overeating in the first place. Once the CBD helped me control my anxiety, I didn’t have a problem with food and I started losing weight without having to resort to dieting.
This is detailed in my blog post The Anxiety-Weight Gain cycle (see link below).
So my solution worked. It just solved a bigger problem than the one I was trying to solve. I was wrong but in the best possible way.