Tuesday, April 13, 2021

How I lost 100 pounds using hunger pain: poverty, empathy and weight loss

It might surprise you to know that feeling hunger pain was a big part of how I lost 100 pounds. I discovered a connection between my own hunger, the poverty and hunger of others and weight loss. Feeling hungry helped inspire me to lose weight but also to work on losing selfishness. Let me explain. 

As a Catholic Christian, I'm called to live in solidarity with the poor, to fast, to show empathy, to pray and  sacrifice for others. This is based on Biblical gospel teachings of Jesus, which the Catholic church has listed in the corporal and spiritual works of mercy. 

I have practiced religious fasting for awhile now but it didn't really hit till I started to work at weight loss. Then I learned on a small scale what was meant by hunger pain. Being hungry really hurts. I don't know the deep hunger of systemic poverty. That pain is something I've never had to endure. But I can offer up my meager sufferings for those who really suffer. 

By denying myself food, I align myself with those in need. Feeling a little of what they feel a lot, makes me more empathetic and sympathetic. When I'm hungry I recall those who are starving. I can ask our Heavenly Father to show mercy. I can give up my selfishness. And on a pragmatic level, saving money on food gives me more to share. It's not enough. It never will be until we eradicate poverty and world hunger for good. But it helps me and I'm grateful for that. 

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