TV presenter, artist Susanna Kamara went through all stages of the fight against excess weight - strict diets, Chinese pills, refusing meat, daily training. However, in the long run, these methods have been ineffective. What helped Suzanne achieve the result and keep it for a long time? All details are in her monologue.
- It was not even overweight, but obesity, as doctors say. They distinguish between these concepts.
"Overweight" is a purely aesthetic category and an absolutely household thing. And obesity is a disease in which fat is deposited in the body and begins to harm it. As an artist, it’s easier for me to explain with examples from painting. So, let's say you look at the works of Kustodiev and Rubens. Both of them portrayed full women.
But only Kustodievsky village women, though full, but absolutely healthy women. They have all the fat located in the muscles - you can’t even pinch such a woman. And in Bacchanus Rubens visible cellulite, fat under the skin. This is an unhealthy fullness. So, I was like a character in the painting "Bacchanalia.
" In my case, it cannot be said that completeness is the result of an internal crisis. I was full of ten years old and at the same time quite cheerful and positive.
Yes, probably most of the health problems have psychological roots. Excess weight, dystrophy, curvature of the spine - the cause must be sought primarily in the head. Overweight control is very similar to drug treatment.
When a person is stressed, the brain sends a threat signal to the body. The body perceives them as a threat of hunger and begins to lay off fats. The body, as it were, stockpiles to normalize the situation. Instinctively, you start eating more and more, and you just want what is harmful - rolls, sweets ..
. they soothe. In fact, this is the same dependence as on cigarettes, alcohol and drugs. To cope with it on your own is almost impossible. But I didn’t know this at first and therefore made many mistakes.
You need to contact professional doctors - endocrinologists, nutritionists, and even plastic surgeons. I had to go through everyone.
Photo: from Suzanne's personal archive
Years before 18, I did not feel at all somehow flawed.
The family loved and supported me in everything. But this is exactly what played a cruel joke with me. I never had any complexes, I was a chubby girl, to put it mildly, but I did not consider myself as such. She wore short tight skirts, bared her full shoulders and back in the folds, and was not at all embarrassed. Moreover, my loved ones set me up so that any unflattering review of me is a clear sign of envy.
So I lived with an inappropriately high self-esteem, until I went to university and fell in love with a guy who stubbornly ignored me. Once, when I boldly approached him and said that I would allow me to meet, he suddenly began to giggle and mumble that I was too full for him. I remember that I was very surprised then. This was the first and very strong blow to pride.
Then, when I first came to the gym for the first time in my life, I could not do anything.
I could not even once raise her legs from a lying position. Then I realized how bad everything is. More precisely, the full realization has come that I am really too fat and very weak. Since then, I went to the simulator every day, with absolutely no plan. Then I graduated from university, took up journalism, and I was not at all up to it.
Photo: from Suzanne’s personal archive
At some point I wanted to change the format of journalistic activity, leave the newspaper on television, where I was suddenly offered to transmit. The first thing I thought about: how I will look on the screen ..
. Actually, I had a lot of experience working with the camera, I participated in commercials and films. But each time it ended in disappointment: I saw the result, and I wanted to sob - the cute chubby aunt Zhenaria from the once popular Brazilian TV series “Slave Izaura” looked at me from the screen. Reality was contrary to my idea of myself, so I was skeptical about the offer to work on TV. I hesitated, shy and was afraid that I looked fat.
They persuaded me, insisted and actually forced me to go into the frame - thank you all very much for that. Everything went well, with each new release, self-confidence returned. Now watching the videos, I laugh: why am I so embarrassed? The discomfort that we managed to overcome allowed us to move on and understand the main thing: there is no stricter judge than you yourself .
There is, of course, a stereotype that only thin girls should work on television, but nevertheless they took me, although I was far from thin. In general, it must be said that telegenicity depends solely on the preferences of television producers.
This is flavoring. As a former fat girl, these stereotypes revolt me to the core. In the world there are a lot of full, but exceptionally beautiful women. Beauty and thinness are not synonyms. Just in different societies there are certain standards of beauty.
For example, in the 17th century in pre-Petrine Russia, if a girl was not "burly," it was difficult for her to get married. It was believed that a woman should first give birth, but how to give birth if you have a slender physique? In the 1960s, everyone went crazy according to the British model of Twiggy, tormented themselves with hunger and fainted. Now the tone is set by fashion designers, for whom a woman is something like a hanger. They show their costumes, and people look at fashion models, making them the standard of beauty.
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Photo: from Suzanne's personal archive
I weighed almost 120 kilograms with a height of 161 centimeters - this is already obesity. I realized that you need to lose weight dramatically, lose tens of kilograms immediately. Since no diets and training are suitable for this, I began to take advertised Chinese pills, which I got secretly, and after that I added sibutramine, which was officially sold. With the help of this drug in seven months I lost more than half the weight - up to 58 kilograms.
However, the result was deplorable. I felt like a completely weak person.
Turning into an improved copy of myself on the outside, inside I was completely devastated. From constant diuretics, I started a terrible tachycardia. I could not even get up in the morning.
Constantly dizzy, I was sick, literally everything hurt. And I didn’t want to eat at all: if only my stomach would not hurt from excess carrots. And this is not irony - the basis of the diet included oatmeal, drinking yoghurts and carrots. Nothing else climbed. I abandoned the sport, began to miss work, I was always thrown into the heat, then in the cold.
In addition, I became a very nervous and irritable person, I could lose my temper due to some trifle.
I almost stopped sleeping. Life has become a round-the-clock activity. At night, with a friend who supported me, they visited the cinemas, traveled to beautiful empty Moscow and relaxed in restaurants where I did not eat, but only drank. Sometimes I felt bad, and we called an ambulance.
Once, the doctor said that this was a one-way trip, ordering immediately to quit the diuretics and stop mocking myself. I was terribly afraid of this, because throwing diuretics gives you a compensatory effect of such a magnitude that it won’t seem enough. At that time, I was a vegetarian, eating only raw leaves and a little cottage cheese with oatmeal. But even with such a meager diet, I gained one kilogram per day. As explained in the hospital, this was the very hypercompensation.
It seemed to me that I was a huge ball of water. No diets helped - even apples puffed.
That's when I decided to urgently take up my health and start living in a new way.
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Photo: from the personal archive of Suzanne
Without a plan, nothing can be achieved at all. I realized for myself that success is planning. However, I am a spontaneous person, so that any of my planning eventually failed. The day started right, and closer to four in the afternoon everything flew into tartaras: the demon Susannah infused me, who began to allow himself everything. I must say that I started an infinite number of times.
I changed fitness clubs and trainers like gloves, thinking that the thing is in them. She also changed nutritionists, treating them skeptically, considering herself the most intelligent. After all, I was able to lose weight by 60 kilograms. However, nothing worked for a long time. At some point, I began to stick to a diet and go to the gym for a year without missing.
As a result, I gained five kilograms. I had a tantrum. Then I realized that an integrated approach was required: I analyzed all the specialists I needed, found the best (by the way, the best does not mean the most expensive) and began to follow the recommendations. First of all, I went through a full check-out, passed all the necessary tests, including genetic ones (for a very round amount). After that, the approximate picture became clear.
I drank a bunch of vitamins, supplements, and some hormonal drugs. I ate by the hour, by grams and did not miss workouts - a pool and a gym. All together stabilized the body and yielded results.
- It turned out to be very difficult to get rid of old eating habits. It was necessary to break yourself.
I am not a very organized person and I like surprise. The most difficult thing is to eat at about the same time and not combine foods that you are used to combining. For example, do not pour oil into the salad, as we all are used to, but only slightly sprinkle on top.
The endocrinologist promised to put me in order for a year and a half. Hearing this, I was upset - too long.
To this, the doctor only shrugged and turned away. There was nothing left but to blindly trust. As a result, in the first few months I stopped swelling, and then gain weight from apples. I returned the form for the promised period. Now I am satisfied with myself.
And I think that this is the main thing and that one should start from this - with self-love. I can’t say that I’m always slim as a mountain gazelle. Sometimes I can afford to dial a little. But I am satisfied with myself and keep myself in shape precisely because I love myself and take care of myself. If you lose weight because of hatred of your body, you will never succeed.
Photo: from Suzanne’s personal archive
The skin suffered quite severely. This is inevitable with massive weight loss. Someone is lucky and his skin is denser, but I was not lucky - my skin is thin and delicate, like parchment paper.
I did not expect this to happen. At the same time, doctors said that thanks to additional procedures (massage, bath, contrast douche), everything is not so bad. In addition, acupuncture helped - I do it in China, unfortunately, I do not know such specialists. But the cardinal issue, of course, was decided by plastic surgery. There was simply no illusion left after all the efforts, as if the skin was able to tighten.
Often more than one operation is required, and not even two. But for myself, I decided that it was more pleasant for me to have an elastic body - albeit in scars - than to be rubber special.
Losing weight did not affect self-confidence. It seems to me, quite the contrary: earlier, when I unconditionally accepted everything in myself, I was not worried about the appearance or the way things are sitting on me, or the way people react - love me or not. After weight loss there was a period when all this greatly bothered me - I looked at the mirror at every opportunity, it was important for me to make sure that I looked good.
Now, most of all, health cares. Everyone knows that being overweight carries risks, but few people realize which and how serious. So now, when I see a complete person in front of me, I really want to help him realize the need to do something about it. And this is not about body positive at all - for example, I do not feel irritation when I see excess fat in the body of other people. Moreover, sometimes I find such forms beautiful.
I know how difficult it is for a person to part with them, and therefore I am very loyal to these beautiful people. But I want to be sure that they are fully aware of the consequences.
Photo: from the personal archive of Suzanne
I'm not afraid that the weight may return.
Yes, he returns periodically. And it’s not scary - it’s impossible to keep yourself within the framework (at least to me) all the time. So you can move your mind. We are living organisms, we tend to change. Today we are slim and beautiful, athletic and full of strength, and tomorrow sluggish - sad, seize sadness with something useless or, on the contrary, starve.
All individually. And women are even more difficult because they give birth. During this period, the body generally lives its own life - during pregnancy and after childbirth, fullness for many women is simply inevitable, and this is normal. Each period has its own duration. Ideally, of course, it is better not to allow weight swings, but if this does not work, then it is important to ensure that the completeness is controlled and not too long.
I have long since stopped killing about the extra five to ten kilograms that either come or go. Somehow, over all these years, I have developed an attitude towards food as fuel, and not as joy. Sometimes I even forget to eat. This, of course, is bad, I am struggling with this. I don’t have my favorite food, I eat whatever I want according to my mood, having learned the principles of “clean food”, as they say in America.
They include the right combination of products. For example, I avoid eating carbohydrates with fats. It's about my favorite ice cream. I had to give up oatmeal with yogurt or milk. We don’t eat bread with cheese either.
In general, I have a principle - I eat any protein with a green salad, without adding any cereals (I also use them only with salad). It’s so physically easier for me. I don’t drink food. I do not know if this is true, I act solely on sensations. In addition, I always loved the gym because it is the fastest way to feel your muscles.
However, now the quality of training has changed: I work more on endurance - 40-50 kilometers on a bicycle at an average pace, long walks and basic exercises with my own weight allow me to stay in good shape without undue stress. Without too much stress, but in joy.
Photo: from the personal archive of Suzanne
- Suzanne came to me exhausted with diets and drugs.
But everything she did worked only to the detriment of the body and exacerbated obesity. She refused meat and ate only fruits and vegetables, and in her case this could not be done. She took sibutramine for a year and a half, which, in principle, can be taken for only two months. When she canceled the drug, a real withdrawal began. We changed the diet to meat, restored the level of iron in the blood (it was very low) and prescribed drugs that normalize the level of insulin (it was elevated).
And one of the most important things is to regulate sleep. This rule must be remembered by everyone: the body compensates for lack of sleep by overeating.
- The psychological factor plays a huge role. First of all, this is due to the fact that endorphins - hormones of joy that are vital for us - are produced easily and quickly if a person eats high-calorie sweet and fatty foods. It is harder and harder to get hormones of joy and happiness through art, hobbies, love, contemplation of nature and physical activity.
And since our spending - primarily our physical activity - is minimal in most cases, the body has not to spend calories. And another important reason for the appearance of extra pounds is slagging of the body. We eat a lot of low-quality, refined, artificially modified foods, depleted in natural vitamins and minerals, enzymes and fiber. Such food is poorly digested, poorly digested, poorly excreted, which means it is deposited in the form of slag. These toxins are toxic, and our body “hides” them in a relatively passive adipose tissue, so that they poison less toxic metabolically active cells - cells of internal organs and muscles.
And another problem is the huge illiteracy of the population in matters of healthy eating and a healthy lifestyle. Even doctors primarily prescribe medications, rather than correcting lifestyle errors that have become the trigger for disease. Getting rid of old eating habits is very difficult. Especially if they are formed in childhood. This is the same as getting rid of long-term addiction to smoking, alcohol or drug addiction.
In the history of Suzanne there is a dependence on tasty and not very healthy food. Not knowing how to lose weight correctly, she resorted to barbaric methods: episodes with scanty malnutrition, which reduced vital processes in the body, slowed down and disturbed metabolism. And then to diet pills with extremely harmful effects on the body, with a long diuretic effect, which ultimately led to kidney and heart failure.
- Most obese people who lose weight drastically there is a problem with the skin. A person becomes like a deflated balloon.
It happens that they reduce weight gradually, and then the skin manages to adjust. But this happens very rarely. As a rule, corrective operations are indispensable. Susanna had a problem with connective tissue - that is, the skin did not hold on her muscles, she "floated". For correction, she needed more operations than people who have no such problem.
You need to be prepared for this. One way or another, many problems can be solved, the only question is how much effort and money you need to spend on this.