Journey Beyond Weight Loss

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Other People's Comments

When people make comments about your weight loss, how do you feel? Many people feel uncomfortable, or they notice that they start to give themselves permission to overeat. Listen in as Marchelle and I discuss this very important (and surprisingly profound!) topic.

Some of this weeks episode highlights are:

11:40 So how do we feel about what other people say about us and why does it matter? So that's the question. The first thing that I want to remind everybody listening to this podcast is that Obesity is a disease. I always capitalize the word Obesity when I write it because I want us to understand that this is a disease. It's not a character flaw.

15:17 No one really knows what a healthy body looks like anymore. When people make comments about you, they are making these comments based on their own perceptions, which is based on THEIR experience and THEIR thoughts and THEIR emotions. It really does not have anything to do with you!

20:30 The truth is, everyone wants to feel good. We all want to feel energetic. We all want feel vibrant. We all want to be able to move again. So stand as a powerful example to others of what is possible. When you finally stop all the crazy diets and take this disease seriously, stand there as an example of someone who's changing from the inside out. The transformation of the body reflects much more than a change in what you're eating. It reflects a change in your very thoughts about who you are and who you want to be in this world.

--- Full Raw Transcription Below ---

Dr. Angela Zechmann (00:00):

You are listening to the, Keep The Weight Off podcast with Dr. Angela episode number 41.

Introduction (00:07):

Welcome to the,Keep The Weight Off podcast, where we bust all the dieting myths and discover not just how to lose weight, but more importantly, how to keep it off. We go way beyond the food and we use science and psychology to give you strategies that work. And now your host, Dr. Angela Zechmann.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (00:27):

Welcome back everybody. And hey there, Marchelle. How are you?

Marchelle (00:32):

I'm good. Hi everybody.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (00:33):

Hey. Well, you know, before I even get started with today, I want to ask each of you who are listening and gaining value from these podcasts. If you would please just take a moment and go to iTunes and rate and review this podcast for us. Marchelle and I would just be so, so grateful if you could do that because your ratings and reviews really help to get the word out to other people who are looking for this valuable information. So podcasts with lots of good ratings and reviews get ranked higher in the algorithms, and that makes them much easier to find.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (01:18):

And, you know, I believe that we have a very different approach and, you know, a much more scientifically accurate way of approaching weight loss than the standard programs out there. And we're on a mission. Right Marchelle? We're on a mission to really educate and help people get this disease under control because let's face it. Almost everyone in this country is struggling. And we're here in the states, but so many other people around the world are struggling too. And there's an answer and there's a lot of hope for conquering this disease. And so we want to stand here as beacons of hope that you can get this disease under control once and for all. So please help us get the word out and we will be really, really grateful.

Marchelle (02:10):

Yeah. And I just wanted to add like the power of social media is really super important and critical element and change making. So if you guys can get the word out, this is something that we really, really believe in. Yeah. We'd really appreciate it.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (02:26):

What you could do also is take a screenshot of the podcast episode and put it on your own social media page. Like put it on your Facebook page or on your Instagram, that would, that would also help get the word out. So that would be great.

Marchelle (02:39):

Yes, please share.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (02:40):


Dr. Angela Zechmann (02:42):

All right. So what I wanted to talk about today is a topic that Marchelle brought up the other day. And we noticed that this happens a lot as people are losing weight. And that is sometimes people make comments about our weight loss and sometimes those comments don't necessarily feel so good. So like Marchelle, what kinds of things have people told you that other people have said about their weight loss? Or what kinds of things have you heard that you weren't, you know, you were like, hmm, I'm not sure about that.

Marchelle (03:21):

So this does come up a lot with patients and I guess, you know, when they tell me about it, you know, I can relate and until I had like a really personal experience with it, and that's, that's probably why I talked to you about it. Yeah. So I think that what happened with me is from the time that I started working with you, you know, I was at a certain weight and I think, you know, our patients that have been with us for a while, they've seen, you know, my weight loss. And I got to a weight that I was like, really comfortable, at least I thought I was really comfortable with. And because I really didn't ever have like a goal weight, you know, I just wanted to feel good in my clothes. I wanted to look better. I wanted to feel better.

Marchelle (04:14):

And so like when I got to this certain weight, a lot of patients started commenting to me like, oh, you've lost so much weight, or you look so thin or, wow you're gonna wither away to nothing if you keep losing more weight. And it started to kind of do something to my mind that made me start to have a lot of negative self-talk like, do I look sick or do have lost too much weight or is there something wrong with me? Do I not look okay?

Marchelle (04:46):

And so, right when that happened, I thought, okay, if I hurry up and like gained five pounds really quick, then maybe that that'll be the place, you know, where people aren't in commenting. You know, even if people were trying to be positive or trying to give me a compliment, just the fact that I'm not used to people commenting on my weight or, or, you know, cause I was overweight for a long time and people probably didn't comment to me polite, but when people started noticing me, it started to make me feel really self-conscious.

Marchelle (05:22):

And so I didn't know what, you know, what this place was that I wanted to be, where people weren't making comments at all. I could just exist. You know? So what ended up happening to me was I gave myself permission to eat whatever I wanted because I thought, okay, if I gained like five pounds, then maybe people won't notice, you know, that I've lost too much weight or whatever they're thinking. And once I gave myself permission to eat, whatever I wanted that started this whole downward spiral of, sugar eating and not having any control over my food choices. Because if you give yourself a week of eating carbs and sugar and whatever you want, when you're me and you have my brain, I was like right back to square one. And I could, I had a really, really hard time stopping myself from eating fast food and stopping at the store for snacks and eating candy again.

Marchelle (06:28):

I mean, I just went right back into it and had a really, really hard time. And I, and I couldn't figure out like, why did I do that? You know, like what's going on with me? Well, I remembered how it started because at that time, you know, I didn't really realize it. That's why that, you know, that had happened is the comments that were being made and felt I learned about it later and I was like, that's what happened is people started commenting on how, you know, how thin I looked or you know, that I had lost so much weight and it just had a really negative impact on me. And I've also had several patients come and talk to me about the same thing that people's comments, even when you're trying to be nice, like, wow, you've lost so much weight. You look a amazing. You know, you look great today. I think sometimes when we're self-conscious we can turn that around and think, why do it, you know, do, did I not look good before? Right.

Marchelle (07:29):

I mean, I know that even if people's intentions are good I think that sometimes it could have, you know, and, and unless you're in a better state of mind, because at that time I didn't have some of the tools that I have now, you know, it's all learning experience. And I was just trying to feel good in my own skin. And so, and I was doing really well, but I wasn't working on maybe some of the emotional parts of weight loss and I was vulnerable at that point. So that, that's why it's a really good topic to talk about. Yeah. I think that a lot of people are affected by this, but we just don't talk about it very much.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (08:12):

Right. Right. Yeah. So I actually asked people in Sugar And Flour Buster's Society. Now, if you're not in Sugar And Flour, Buster's Society, that's our free Facebook group. So get in there make sure that you join us in Sugar And Flour Buster Societies. But I just put a question in there and I said, you know, have you ever experienced somebody commenting about your weight? And it did it ever sort of make you feel uncomfortable? And a lot of people chimed in, there were a lot of interesting comments.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (08:43):

There was one woman who said, you know, my journey took a couple of years and she had the thought when somebody commented on how good she looked her or whatever the comment was, she said, oh, so now I'm worth your attention. Now that I'm thin, I'm worth your attention before that, man, she, she felt like, oh, maybe, you know, people just didn't care all that much. Another woman said that she did appreciate the positive comments, but she didn't like the inquisitive comments. Like how much weight have you lost? How did you do it and all of that. Right? Yeah. And then another woman said, like, she felt like she was on display almost like her friends were watching her really, really carefully. And that made her pretty nervous. And, and I, that would make me nervous too. If I felt like I was on display. Now I think about it, you know?

Marchelle (09:35):

Well, I've heard, I've heard patients say that, that yeah. Well, my friend said that they will come join this program after they see if I'm successful or if it works for me, then my family will come. So yeah. So they felt like super pressured and on display. And I just wanted to add that we have a patient, her name is Anne. I'm just going to say her first name. She is the one that inspired this topic for me to ask you about it. So I just wanted to give a shout out to her. I'm glad that we're talking about this and this one is for you.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (10:10):

Oh, that's awesome. Well, you know, another woman in the, in the Sugar And Flour Buster's Society, she said, you know, no, one's going to tell you that you're gaining weight, but they definitely mentioned it after you lose it. And that felt uncomfortable to her.

Marchelle (10:26):

So I totally understand that feeling.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (10:29):

Yeah. And then we actually had another woman who said exactly what you just said, Marchelle. She said that when her friends told her she was too thin, she would end up sabotaging herself. So I think that that is a really common experience. Somebody starts saying, oh, you know, you're getting so thin. Then you're like, oh, what am I, you know, maybe this isn't right. Maybe I'm doing it wrong. Maybe it's maybe I have overdone it, I think a lot. I know a lot of people have talked to me about their concern, about getting too thin, you know, about getting sort of in the anorexic zone. And I always,

Marchelle (11:06):

Yeah, I didn't know, like we know like where do you stop? Or like, what's enough because when you're like in this mindset and I have to say it is the, it is diet mentality. And I was still there in that moment, you know, wanting to hurry up and get to this certain place where I felt like I was skinny and I was not paying attention to a lot of the things that were going on inside of me emotionally. And so other people's comments I took very personally.,

Dr. Angela Zechmann (11:40):

Yeah. Yeah. Well, I'm really, really glad that, that you brought this up because I have so much to say on this. Well, I have a lot to say about a lot of things, but this one, I really do have a lot to say. So how do we feel about what other people say about us and why does it matter? So that's the question.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (11:58):

So the first thing that I want to remind everybody, listening to this podcast is Obesity is a disease. Now I always capitalize the word Obesity when I write it, because I want us to understand that this is a disease. It's not a character flaw. Almost everyone in the Western world, eating the global industrialized diets, we call it the standard American diet here in America, but we have exported it overseas. So now it is the global industrialized diet of processed factory made food.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (12:36):

Almost everyone who eats it, develops this disease or drinks sodas or energy drinks, or, you know, basically it is, it's toxic food. And so we end up getting this disease. This disease was not all that prevalent 50 or a hundred years ago. It's come about because our modern food supply is, is toxic. And when we eat this toxic stuff and what we don't know about it is that it's highly addictive and it causes derangement in our brains appetite regulation system. I've talked about this before. And so, when you're working at getting this disease under control, it takes a lot of work. It's not just work that it takes on your food, but it takes work on your thoughts about who you are and how you live your life. Okay? So that's sort of a basis - understanding of what I want everybody to be thinking about.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (13:38):

As they're wondering about these questions about what, what do I do when other people say things. Okay? Now, what I want you to understand is that there is not one other person in the world that can possibly know your personal experience with this disease. No one else knows what you experienced growing up. Even your own siblings had a different experience growing up in your family than you did. You can have identical twins. And we do have identical twins in our practice and their experience is very, very different. So no one, no other person can understand how susceptible you might be to the drug-like effects of these foods. No one else can possibly know what your ideal weight is. Once you start feeding your body, whole natural foods with the right amount of protein, the right amount of healthy fats.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (14:39):

The truth of the matter is that almost no one knows what a healthy, vibrant body looks like anymore, because so many of us are struggling with this disease. So what we've accustomed to seeing people at a certain size, and that's what feels normal to us. But I want to ask the question, is it normal? When almost everyone is struggling with high blood pressure and when people in their thirties have serious arthritis and sleep apnea, and when 25% of all high school students have, pre-diabetes? What we think of as normal is far from normal. So I just want to presence that. No one really knows what a healthy body looks like anymore. So does that make sense, Marchelle?

Marchelle (15:27):

That definitely makes sense because I was just thinking, like, I believe that I've always just thought that the skinnier the better,

Dr. Angela Zechmann (15:35):

Right? Yeah. Yeah. So, so here's another thing to think about. And that is that when people make comments about you, you, the listener, they are making these comments based on their own perceptions, which is based on their experience and their thoughts and their emotions. It really does not have anything to do with you. So let's say your mother tells you that she thinks you're getting too skinny and she's worried. Just know that she's basing her opinion on her own beliefs about herself, which may or may not be accurate for you. It's as if she's saying your hair is green. Now, unless you've actually gone and colored your hair green, or spent a bunch of time in a chlorinated pool, you know, your hair is not green. So it's like that statement is completely inaccurate because you know yourself well, and you have a solid foundation of self-love and self-respect.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (16:43):

And so that really is the key to have this solid foundation of self-love and self-respect. And most people who struggled with the disease of Obesity don't have that solid foundation because they've been questioning themselves all their lives. Why do I struggle like this? Why can't I get this under control? And they've been trying so hard. And so most people don't have that solid foundation. And so, that's what we're working on really, really hard, very specifically in our membership. We're really helping our members to develop a strong sense of themselves as lovable, worthy beings, born with the right to love and be loved for exactly who they are as imperfect, but evolving human beings.

Marchelle (17:34):

Right. [unclear] It's just, I just wanted, sorry. I'm yeah, no worries. Because I was starting to think you know, that there's this psychology behind weight loss that we don't talk about a lot. It's just basically, you know, eat this or don't eat that. Yeah. We're we're complex beings and we need compassionate support on deeper levels. We need to deal with our feelings and our thoughts and our beliefs when it comes to being able to release weight.

Marchelle (18:02):

And that is what I love about Journey Beyond Weight Loss. And I've learned so much about you know, the, the changing of your identity is so important than just, you know, exercise more, eat less because there's so much more to it. I mean, it is so mental and that is why if you work on yourself and you start to change on the inside, then those comments that people make, they probably, they won't affect you like they might have before. Cause, cause now I have learned a whole lot about what goes on on the inside of you know, in my mind. And so I'm not, and you know, now I, now I'm going in with a different attitude. It's a learning experience. I mean, you know, it took me a while, to understand this.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (18:53):

Yeah. Well, think about it. You know, if, if your sitting in a place of strong and secure love for yourself, the comments of other people are like water rolling off a Duck's back. They just, they just don't phase you because you know that your doing exactly what's right to get this disease under control for yourself. So you've, you're nourishing your body properly and you can expect that your body is going to release unneeded weight when you do that. And I shouldn't say, wait, I should say unneeded fats when you do that. Okay. Cause we're not about weight loss, we're about fat loss. So, so you can be patient with yourself as you're on this journey, you're constantly discovering new things about yourself and you're treating yourself with love and compassion as you make all of these new discoveries. And so someone else might mention, well, you've changed. What's different?

Dr. Angela Zechmann (19:48):

They might not even notice that you've lost weight. They may just notice that you seem more vibrant and healthy and you've got a different energy about you. And you can say, I'm just learning how to take care of myself better and how to feed my body differently and how to nourish myself properly. And I'm feeling a lot better. It's not easy, but thank you for noticing. If people say that they think you're getting too skinny, you can say, well, I appreciate your concern, but trust me, I'm feeding my body with plenty of nourishing food and I feel great. As time goes on and they see these consistent changes in you, they might get more curious, you'll be an inspiration. They can see what you've accomplished and they, they decide, hey, I want that too. You know? And so when they ask, you can tell them what you've done and how you've done it.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (20:41):

The truth is, you know, everyone wants to feel good. We all want to feel energetic. We all want feel vibrant. We all want to be able to move again. So stand as a powerful example to others of what's possible. When you finally stop all the crazy diets and take this disease seriously. Stand there as an example of someone who's changing from the inside out. Meaning, that the transformation of the body reflects much more than a change in what you're eating. It reflects a change in your very thoughts about who you are and who you want to be in this world.

Marchelle (21:21):

Right. That's definitely, definitely, I think that I've spent so many years finding validation and what other people thought about me or, you know, the standard perfect look would be or the perfect size or what kind of clothes to wear. And I also used to believe, you know, that depending on how you looked, would determine on how people treated you.

Marchelle (21:50):

And so if, when I was overweight and I was feeling really bad about myself, I just saw the world is really being against me. And then I was against the world and everyday wake up unhappy and I would lean on my clothes, wouldn't fit right and I would just kind of want to disappear, you know, I wouldn't want it didn't want to stand out. And, and I'm still working on that too, because I still do find validation in what other people think. I mean, there's mornings that I wake up and I'm just feeling off and I'm just not feeling like I'm that pretty that day. And I have a hard time kind of overcoming that and going about my day and you know, with the……

Dr. Angela Zechmann (22:31):

That's so hard to believe because you're so beautiful. Oh my gosh.

Marchelle (22:36):


Dr. Angela Zechmann (22:38):

That's really hard to believe that you would ever wake up and go, oh my gosh. I'm not very pretty.

Marchelle (22:43):

Wow. Okay. Yeah. Thank you for that. But no, like, and it would end and it would seriously they'll even, like I said, having somebody make one comment, then they may not even mean to be judgemental. If, if you're, if like me, if I'm insecure about myself, it will ruin my whole day. I'll dwell on it all day long. Yeah. But I mean, like I said, I've been doing a lot of work on that and it's still, it's still hard for me to overcome that because I, I still believe that, you know, I mean, I guess that I'm having a hard time, you know, getting older and accepting, you know, changes that happen as you get older.

Marchelle (23:24):

But also like I had a hard time kind of accepting the changes that my body was making as I was losing weight as well, because I guess I got so used to being like in this unhealthy body that once I started losing weight and even though I felt good, I still was like really worried about what people thought about me.

Marchelle (23:47):

And that's just something I'm trying to work on is just like just doing what I need to do to be healthy. And, I'm more I'm, I think I'm more vulnerable if I've slipped or I, you know, I've gotten off track because I feel like the rest of the world knows. No. You know? And so it just, it just out, so then when people make comments, you know, if I know I'm not really, you know, doing what I, when I know I'm supposed to be doing, then, you know, I'm just more susceptible to listening to that. But I don't know, it's a, you know, I'm a work in progress and I'm you know, and even recently I've I've had some, some weight gain. After going on vacation, I have a really hard time with vacations and, you know, I've had to do some work to get back on track.

Marchelle (24:33):

And and as that's not just like outside work, not just figuring out what I need to eat is just seriously like what happens when I let myself get out of control. It's like this feeling of total freedom and I like to feel free and do what I want to do. It's sort of like a rebellious nature for me to like reel it in and get control back of, you know, what I'm doing with my life. And that's a little bit hard for me. So yeah. So I guess I just wanted to share that because I know I've been talking about it a lot with patients and they've been talking a lot with me about this, but I know it's, I'm working on it and I'm glad that we're talking about this. And I just think that be careful with your comments. You don't really know how it's going to affect somebody..

Dr. Angela Zechmann (25:28):

Yeah. Yeah. But I also feel like if we can just remember that, you know, if you're feeding your body, nourishing food, good protein, healthy fats, lots of vegetables, like your body's going to change. And so let people make their comments, you know, let them make their comments and just know that you're doing everything that's right for you. And that's what matters. Like, and, and again, I can't emphasize enough. No one knows what a healthy, vibrant body looks like anymore. None of us know,

Marchelle (26:05):

I don't, I don't,

Dr. Angela Zechmann (26:07):

You know, like your grandma comes up to you and say, tell him tells you you're getting too skinny. It's just like, grandma look around, you know, like everybody is struggling with their weight and everybody has this disease because we're all eating, you know, the process standard American diet. And so people just don't know what a healthy, vibrant body does look like.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (26:28):

So again, remember also that people are making comments based on their own perspective and their own judgments. And so anytime that somebody is making comments about you, it's really reflecting only what's going on in their head and it really doesn't have any bearing on you. And just remember, most people have this disease called Obesity. In order to manage it and manage it well, you have to have a solid foundation of self-love. You want to know yourself really deeply. And you want to know that you're a worthy human being on a path of growth and evolution.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (27:16):

You make mistakes as all humans do. Everybody makes mistakes. And we talked about having a different relationship with failure of a few episodes back. So it's not a big deal. If you make a mistake, unless you decide to make it a big deal, which I encourage you not to do. But when you make mistakes, you know, that you're always going to be there for yourself and the comments of other people just roll off your back because you know that you're doing what's right for you. And again, we work on all of this in detail, in the Journey Beyond Weight Loss membership. So I hope that if you're not already a member that you'll consider joining us there, because we do a lot of awesome stuff there. Okay.

Marchelle (28:01):

I agree. I think that, I think we all need to do Journey Beyond Weight Loss. I'm are starting to think that I, there's a couple of things to work on that I'm struggling with.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (28:13):

Well, it's like this, it's like this upward spiral, like you gain, you gained so much clarity about yourself when you go through it and then, you know, you tackle another subject again and you gain even more clarity and you just get better and better and more and more evolved. It's just a really awesome process to go through. So.

Marchelle (28:32):

Yeah. I just need to figure out why weight gain or weight loss affects my outlook on life so much. Yeah. I mean, it does, it does definitely a work in progress.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (28:43):

Yeah. Okay. Everybody, thank you for joining us this time and we will see you next week with another great topic. And if you guys have any, anything that you want us to talk about feel free to leave a comment in the let's see where could they leave comments. You could leave comments on the podcast notes. So just go to Just go to the link to this podcast and leave a comment there if you want to. Or, you could just email me at [email protected]. That would work too.

So awesome everybody. Take care and have a great week.

Marchelle (29:24):

Goodbye Everybody.

Dr. Angela Zechmann (29:25):


Closing (29:27):

Hey, if you really want to lose weight and keep it off for good, your next step is to sign up for Dr. Angela's free weight loss course, where you're going to learn everything you need to get started on your weight loss journey, the right way. Just head over to to sign up. Also, it would be awesome if you could take a few moments and write a review on iTunes.

Thanks! And we'll see you in Journey Beyond Weight Loss.

Dr. Angela



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