Self Care

My Big Fat Secret: Gluttony


Eating more than you need is eating excessively, and that is the very definition of gluttony. So I am a glutton.

It’s time to stop making excuses and call it what it is. Excuses have not helped me. They have been my coddling enablers and I’m calling them out.

Excuses For Gluttony

“Gluttony isn’t only about food.” If I wasn’t carrying around extra weight, it’d be easy to hide behind the excuse that other people are gluttons for other things. Some people don’t control their appetites for shopping, social media, alcohol, sex, or television. Somehow, I’ve twisted those lusts into a justification for my own. It’s a diversionary tactic at best and self-deception at worst. Am I a child that I should play such games on myself?

“I have to eat to be social.” It’s true, a lot of our social activities revolve around food. Yet I’ve witnessed people choosing healthy dishes on buffet tables. My plate never filled itself. I could probably make my hand choose the serving spoons that deliver low-cal options to my plate. Or I could go on playing the smorgasbord’s powerless victim. I’m sure people would feel sorry for me.

“It isn’t me, it’s my aging metabolism.” This is, perhaps, the most idiotic thing I’ve ever said out loud. My metabolism is me. My menopause is me. And my weakening eyesight is me too. Like everyone else, I’m a package of issues. The fact that my basal metabolic rate has fallen into an abyss is my new reality and I must adjust. So my love of eating hasn’t suffered a proportionate decline. That’s tough tootsie for me. If I don’t moderate my calories, there will be consequences. Fat cells don’t care if they give me poor self-esteem. Heartless things.Fat cells don’t care if they give me poor self-esteem. Heartless things. Click To Tweet“Now [insert person 50 pounds fatter than me], she’s fat!” I can always find someone to favorably compare myself. For some reason though, that doesn’t make three flights of stairs easier to climb. Comparing myself to others can’t make me unguilty of gluttony.

Tough Self-Talk

I need to talk tough to myself because, in this politically-correct, never-risk-offense culture of ours, it’s likely no one else will. So I’m putting on my big-girl pants.

I can’t walk away from food like I can walk away from Facebook for a month. That would be an unhealthy reaction. And I can’t change that others may see my weight as a reflection of my level of self-control. In my case, they’re not wrong. So I need to be a grown up, take responsibility, and manage my relationship with food. I’m not a helpless captive under the spell of pasta and Ding Dongs. I can just say no.

I have changes to make. Scripture says God ordains the length of our lives before they come into existence* and I believe Scripture is trustworthy. Therefore, I don’t believe exercise and healthy eating habits will add years to my life as some say. (Runners die on the side of the road from heart attacks and vehicular impact.)

But I do believe exercise and healthy eating habits affect one’s quality of life. For the sake of quality, and for the sake of family I love, it’s time to moderate my food intake. I won’t do that if I reassign the sin of gluttony to a symptom of an illness I bear no responsibility for. I haven’t been ill. I’ve been indulgent.

* Psalm 139:16

gluttony   gluttony