Weight Loss from Moving Countries: The Expat Diet
Hold your hats, because we’re about to get personal.
For the vast majority of my teenage years and my early college years, I was probably overweight. I think I bordered on the “Normal” and “Overweight” BMI line, but was probably more often closer to the latter. What can I say, I like to eat and my favorite food groups are carbs. It’s a dangerous combination. Also check out those bangs.
Today, I’m about 20-25 pounds less than the last time I lived in America permanently and I’m more firmly in the “normal” range. Except I never tried to lose the pounds. I didn’t even realize I was losing weight. I came home one year and my whole family was in shock like I had just come back from fat camp.
Looking back now, it’s all very obvious, but at the time I was just like, “YES! Miracle weight loss! Maybe I had a growth spurt at the age of 21?”
In reality, living the Londoner lifestyle was good for me in more ways than one. Firstly, I walked EVERYWHERE. Sometimes across the whole city in a day. If I wanted to go get food, I had to walk there. Work? Walk. School? Walk? Go to the park for a walk? HAD TO WALK THERE.
This is a huge generalization because it’s easy to be overweight in England and it’s equally as easy to lose weight in America if you’re actually trying. But I have found that English eating habits are healthier than American ones. Fast food is existent, of course, but less of a ‘staple’ meal and more of a treat for many families. Portion sizes at restaurants are smaller. Many products lack the chemicals that you can find in their American counterparts. Also, sidenote, grapes are usually considered an ‘after-dinner’ dessert food. GRAPES. In my mind, grapes are the things I had to eat as a kid to then get to the good stuff, AKA cake. But anyway.
I love American junk food and will never miss an opportunity to either ask my friends and family to send me some or buy some at an extortionate price in the American aisle of the local grocery store, but I’m doing a lot better without having it around all of the time (and haven’t really fallen in love with too many English ‘junk’ treats except for Cadburys which I could eat from morning until night).
So, in short, if you’re looking to lose weight: diet and exercise or…move to England!