PLEASANT GROVE — Health isn't all about blood tests and numbers. Emotional and mental health is just as important.
Body image discrepancy is when there's a difference between what we think we should look like and what we actually look like. And for one Pleasant Grove mom, that discrepancy hit home this past year when she noticed her girls following her lead.
Chantal and Steve Green's four little girls, age 9 to 2 years old, are their life.
"Those girls are just the best thing to ever happen to me. They are my reason for living," Chantal Green.
And the girls look up to mom. That is why she's throwing away her scale and no longer dieting.
"I did. I literally walked my scale out to my dumpster and tossed it, and I never looked back," she said.
But it took her almost 30 years to get there. "After I had Mackley, who is my 4-year-old, I was probably up to 180 to 190 pounds," she said.
Chantal Green counted points, kept track of calories and exercised a lot.
"I was working out 45 minutes a day in the morning and then 90 minutes every night," she said.
The weight came off, but then the mother of four kept thinking she had more to lose.
"I had this mind-switch that I still had 20 pounds to go and I wasn't going to be happy until I lost that 20 pounds," she said.
Losing weight became a game to her. She even started cutting her food portions in half.
"I would miss friends nights, I would miss dinner nights, and I wouldn't eat dinner with my kids. I couldn't eat what they were having," Chantal Green said.
But it was when her kids started mimicking her, she knew she needed a new mind switch.
"I was weighing out my granola one morning, my 6-year-old said, 'Mom do I have to start weighing my Lucky Charms?'" Chantal Green recalled.
She decided she was done weighing, done tracking, "couldn't do it anymore."
Reva Cook, Intermountain Healthcare licensed clinical social worker at Utah Valley Hospital's LiVe Well Center, said getting our body and mind on the same page is not easy.
"I think it takes a lot of guts and a lot of courage to stand up to that and be aware of that internalization," Cook said.
Cook said the key is recognizing those extreme's and setting realistic expectations about what is healthy.
"We can get this message that our body is the most important thing, well it's not. Our life is the most important thing. Your body helps you live your life," she said.
And that's exactly what Chantal Green is doing. She tries to focus on what the girls can do with their healthy bodies, like dance and athletics. She also now tries to eat with the family.
"It's just a healthy lifestyle," she said. She joked, "It's a good thing how much better of a mom you can be when you're not hungry."
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