Post Content

 
Katia small
 Written by Katia Powell

Katia is a Doctoral student in Public Policy and an intern at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health
 
 Katia_B4_1

My life has always been filled with people, love, laughter, and purpose. Despite this, I have always felt a sense of emptiness, and used food to comfort me and fill that void. At the young age of 26, I tipped the scale at 350lbs. ‘How did I get to this point?!’ I would ask myself. I was morbidly obese and had asthma, a bad back, and weak knees from the extra weight. In addition, I lost my job and dropped out of nursing school because of financial problems. I had reached the lowest point in my life.

Despite these events, I was determined to get my life back on track and go back to medical school someday. I was motivated to help others live healthier lives, but knew I had to start with myself. In addition, I was tired of always being told, “You have such a pretty face!” It was time to make a change.

I joined a local gym for a low cost and started working out 3-4 times a week. I slowly worked my way up to being active 4-5 days a week for 60-90 minutes. I changed my eating habits and wrote down everything I ate. Eating healthy can get expensive, but I found ways to eat healthy while staying within my small budget:

  1. I rarely went out to eat and made my food at home
  2. I stopped for fresh fruits and vegetables at local Farmers Markets
  3. I clipped coupons and kept an eye on grocery ads for sales
  4. I stopped buying cups of coffee and brewed it at home before leaving for work
  5. I made my own 100 calorie snacks from larger packages
  6. I planned my meals a few days in advance

Believe me, it was not easy. Yet, the benefits outweighed the costs.

Katia after  

In six short months I lost 100 lbs and felt awesome. It took me 3 years to lose the excess weight and arrive at the goal weight of 150 lbs. Since then, I have regained 30 lbs, but I have the confidence and determination to lose the excess weight.

As an African American woman, I’m at higher risk for obesity-related diseases like diabetes, heart disease and stroke. Let my story serve as an example of how to defy the odds. Not only did I reach my goal weight, but I’m back on track in my career as a student intern at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health and a doctoral student in Public Policy.

Despite whatever is going on in your life, you can make a positive change and become a healthier you. If I can do it, you definitely can too! So join me in my journey toward healthiness today!

 

Share Katia's story:  

 

 

Written By:

Recent Posts

Blueberries for All! posted on Jul 22

Blueberries for All!

July is National Blueberry Month! Since the entire month is dedicated to blueberries, this is a great time to remind ourselves how healthy blueberries are, as well as learn about the different ways we can enjoy them. These delicious berries are low in calories and   …Continue Reading Blueberries for All!

Highlights of the July 16 Public Health Council Meeting posted on Jul 16

This month’s meeting of the Public Health Council featured discussions on two Determination of Need (DoN) requests, a final vote on proposed amendments to existing regulations related to prevention and treatment of sports concussions among student athletes, and two informational presentations on current DPH activities   …Continue Reading Highlights of the July 16 Public Health Council Meeting

Your Peaceful Place posted on Jul 16

Your Peaceful Place

Where do you go to de-stress and find peace? You know, that special place that relaxes you, refreshes your mind, body, and spirit, and makes your heart sing. For some, it’s a room in their home; for others, it’s a quiet place in a park   …Continue Reading Your Peaceful Place