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:
- I rarely went out to eat and made my food at home
- I stopped for fresh fruits and vegetables at local Farmers Markets
- I clipped coupons and kept an eye on grocery ads for sales
- I stopped buying cups of coffee and brewed it at home before leaving for work
- I made my own 100 calorie snacks from larger packages
- I planned my meals a few days in advance
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: Tweet
Summer Jobs for Teens: Can I Drive That? posted on Jun 23
Summer is finally here – which means teens are out of school and looking for summer jobs. In the spirit of promoting healthy, safe jobs for our future workforce, here’s the question of the season: Can teens drive for work? Many employers, educators, parents, and …Continue Reading Summer Jobs for Teens: Can I Drive That?
Remember these Sun Safety Tips! posted on Jun 22
After a year of waiting, summer is finally here! That means cookouts, picnics, beach days, and barbecues! Although time in the sun lets our bodies absorb vitamin D, necessary for strong, healthy bones, too much unprotected sun exposure can be very harmful and may lead …Continue Reading Remember these Sun Safety Tips!
Cleaning Can Be Bad for Your Health posted on Jun 16
Wait a minute! That sounds like a teenager’s excuse for a messy room. But a closer look reveals that cleaning may create new hazards while it eliminates dust, deodorizes diaper pails, and makes food preparation safer. This is a time of year when we think …Continue Reading Cleaning Can Be Bad for Your Health