Belly Fat and Chronic Illness title with an arrow pointing at Matt's belly

Belly Fat and Chronic Illness

Hey everybody, it is Matt Cavallo from Situation Positive. I want to talk to you today about a problem that I’ve had over the last two years or so. And that’s with weight gain. I’ve lived a very sedentary lifestyle. We had quarantine. A lot of my work has been sitting at my desk and my office is just way too close to the kitchen so I could get snacks whenever I wanted.

So, I’ve put on a lot of weight, and I carry my weight and my stomach. You can see here, this is an unhealthy place for a male to carry weight. Weight carried here can lead to a whole host of health problems, including heart disease, or like I suffer from, acid reflux. So, for about the last year, I’ve tried to do something about it.

I’ve tried a number of diets. I did intermittent fasting, and nothing really seemed to work. You know, it got to the point where you know, I could look at a piece of bread and put on two pounds and it starts to make me worry. I don’t want to die young because I’m overweight. I don’t want to suffer from heart disease.

This acid reflux has been really tough on me. You know, I’ve got a wife and two kids and two dogs. They need me. So, I need to do something about my weight gain. It’s not the most comfortable thing to talk about because the things I’ve tried to this point have failed. And, you know, it’s, I’ll lose a couple of pounds here and there and then I’ll try something else, and the weight will come right back on.

It just is frustrating. And so, I decided what I wanted to do was explore medical, weight loss, nonsurgical. So, I went to a medical weight loss clinic, and I met with a doctor, and I’ve learned something about my stats. I’m going to read them to you. So, when I went in there, I was 243.61 pounds.

My target weight to get to where I should be, health-wise should be around 198 point 81 pounds. So, I am 45 pounds overweight. It seems impossible. I was an athlete. I used to play hockey. I used to play football. I was in the Navy. How am I 45 pounds overweight? One of the things that my doctor called out was my BMI.

So, I’ve got a BMI of 32.1. Now a BMI should be in the 19 to 25 range and anything above 30 is a risk for heart disease. So, I’m 45. I have this family that I’m caring for and that cares about me and I’m at risk for heart disease. I’ve got a fat percentage of 33.1. Now that means 33% of my weight is fat.

The desirable range should be anywhere from 11 to 22. So, I am in the danger zone. And it’s causing me a lot of health problems. I have had acid reflux and my acid reflux has been horrible. There was a two-week period where I hiccup the whole time. It gave me chronic laryngitis. It’s making everything feel tight in here.

It’s pushing on my lungs, which activated asthma I grew out of when I was a kid it’s giving me chest pains. It, most of all, it’s giving me fatigue. I’m just too heavy too. My frame is too heavy to carry the weight I have on it. And also. It’s my extra weight is causing hip bursitis. So, when I go to sleep at night, I have hip pain on my right side.

So, I flip like a fish. During the night I’ll be on my left side, I’ll be on my right side. And what happens is when I’m on my right side, I end up waking up in the middle of the night. And so, I haven’t slept through the night a single night since I’ve had this hip bursitis. Okay. I also have multiple sclerosis as we’ve talked about.

Right. So, this is creating extra stress. I’ve, I’ve had problems walking in the past and now I’m carrying all this extra weight. That’s 45 extra pounds. So, it’s scaring me. And so quite frankly, I want it to take action and I want it to do it under a doctor’s supervision. I didn’t want to be I’ve failed at diets.

I failed at intermittent fasting. I’ve been yoyoing so I wanted to try something I could commit to and stay with it for the diet window. And I’m hoping what happens is new habits are born because what I’ve had in the past is I was always the garbage disposal. I was always the one with who Matt would finish the plate.

I’ll eat anything. I love bread. I love pasta. I come from a big Italian family, and I love all Italian foods. Pizza to me is the most perfect food. I mean, what other food has all four food groups on it, on something you can eat with your hands. I mean, it does not get any better than that. Right. But those days are done.

I have to make a change. I have to make a change. Psychologically. I eat fast. I have to slow down. I have to step away when I’m full. I have to measure my caloric intake. I didn’t even know how to do that, but I’ve got a scale now. One of the things that are making me happy is my wife is doing this with me and I’m super happy about that because we can be accountable to each other.

I didn’t want to shoot this video because then it brings my problems to light. Right. But I’ve got to start with the man in the mirror and I’m the one who has to make that change. So, what I’m going to do is I’m going to be accountable to all of you in this Situation Positive community. You know, I read there, I started at 2 43.

Let’s step on the scale to see where I’m at.

So right now, I am at 234.6 pounds. It is. I’ve been four days since I’ve been on the program. The program consists of two medicines. One is an appetite suppressant. One is a hormone that helps stimulate your glands. I do a fat booster shot with vitamin B12, but the big thing is diet, right?

These treatments that I’m taking under medical supervision. And I think that’s the key. Right. I’m working with a doctor. I’m at a nonsurgical weight loss clinic under the care of a doctor. So, I’m not taking anything that isn’t under doctor supervision, you know, I’m not just going into a store or going into the internet and trying something that isn’t FDA approved being cared for by a doctor.

And so, so far, we started at 243, 4 days ago. And right now, I’m at 234, I’ve cut out all sugars and all bread. And it’s kind of crazy. I don’t know if you guys can see me sweating on the film or not, but you have withdrawals, sugars, and everything. There’s actually, there’s a meme. You can Google your brain on sugar.

Looks the same as your brain on cocaine. I guess the, to stimulate the same endorphins. Okay. So, without this without my sugar, I’m going through withdrawals, right? It’s been four days. It’s been hard. Right. But I have to commit. You know this fat-burning part of the program that I’m on lasts for 30 days.

Picture of a brain on sugar compared to a picture of a brain on cocaine
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And yeah, I read somewhere sometime that a new habit can be formed within 21 days. I believe that it’s actually more than that, but you know, I like to use that as a measuring stick because I’m going to be in this fat burner program for at least 30 days. Right. And you know what? I’m just using a boost to get the heavy heaviness off of me to feel more comfortable in my skin to get on a regular diet program, to detoxify from the sugars, from the carbohydrates.

So right now, what I’m eating in, in the morning and, and again, this is a physician-prescribed diet in the morning. I’m having four ounces of protein. I choose to be egg whites and a piece of fruit and there are certain fruits on the list. And then for, for lunch and for dinner, I’ve chosen, there are more options, but I’m choosing a leafy green salad.

With, with a cup and a half of vegetables and six ounces of protein, which, which I’ve been using chicken. So, I’m trying to eat as, as clean, and as lean as I possibly can. While I have the aid of this medical weight loss program. And when I’m going to do my commitment to you is each week, I’m going to show my progress.

You know, right now I’m looking pretty heavy and I’m not sticking this out. This is, this is just natural. You know, I think people call it the dad bod. I don’t like it it’s, it doesn’t make me feel good. So, I want to get back to the Matt bod. I want to, I want to get back to feeling comfortable in my clothes, not having pain in my hip, not having acid reflux. Positive change starts with me.

I can only control my effort and my attitude. And I’m choosing that I need to make this change not only for today but for my health in the future. This has been Matt Cavallo with Situation Positive reminding you that no matter what happens, you can turn your situation positive.

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