All brides want to look good on their wedding days, and many equate this with looking thinner. However, sometimes people will go to extreme and harmful lengths to do this. While many brides attempt to lose weight before walking down the aisle, some do it in dangerous ways by harmfully restricting calories. This is not only unhealthy, but also counterproductive.
Bodies need food to live. The calories we consume turn into energy so that we are able to go to work, exercise, and sit on the couch binge watching reality shows (maybe that’s just me?) It’s important to give your body the fuel it needs to go about your activities, and as anyone can tell you, wedding planning takes a ton of energy.
If that’s not reason enough to skip the crash diet, then you may also want to continue to eat healthily (and enough) so that your metabolism doesn’t think that you are actually starving. Because bodies really want to survive, when you severely restrict calories, your metabolism thinks that you are living in famine conditions and will slow down your metabolism to compensate. This slowing of the metabolism may continue- for a long time after your diet is over as well—sometimes even the rest of your life. When your metabolism is slow, your body clings to the weight it has and makes it almost impossible to lose weight. Even if you do notice some weight loss, it is only temporary; you will almost certainly gain this weight back—and possibly even more. Your brain will also become obsessed with food, and you may find yourself unable to focus on other things, which is really bad timing because even under the best of circumstances, figuring out seating arrangements can feel like an impossible logic puzzle.
Having said all that, there are ways that you can be happier and more confident in your body right now without attempting to lose a pound!
Find a Dress You Love (and That Fits!)
One way to help make sure you look and feel your best on your wedding day is to find a dress that you love and that looks great on your body as is. You need to focus on dressing your actual body, not the body that you wish you had, because on your wedding day, you will be in your actual body.
It also is so important that the dress fits you properly. If you plan to lose weight before your wedding, you may have trouble with the fit of your gown, or it may start to fit in a way that you aren’t prepared for. There are tons of articles everywhere (and here) about gorgeous dresses for plus size brides. (While the urge to lose weight through calorie restriction is a problem for all sizes of brides, thinner women have more dress options to begin with and don’t need special guides.)
Find a dress that makes you feel beautiful, whether that is a traditional wedding dress or an old dress you’ve had forever (or even a dress alternative, such as a pantsuit). Wear whatever makes you feel beautiful and the most like yourself.
Admire Brides of All Sizes
As a fat person, it can be easy to start to believe that there is something wrong with being fat or that it is impossible to be pretty and also be fat. The best way that I have found to combat these negative thoughts is to look at pictures of plus size and fat brides and genuinely notice their beauty. It can sometimes be easier to find the beauty in someone else than it can be to find the beauty in ourselves. That’s why looking at other gorgeous brides with similar body types as myself can be so helpful; by admiring them, I am also admiring myself.
Do Things That Make Your Body Feel Good
We all want our bodies to feel good, and sometimes we believe that the way to do that is by losing weight. However, there are lots of ways to make your body feel good that have nothing to do with dieting or counting calories. One of my favorite things is to get a massage. I love how relaxed my body feels afterwards, and I know that I look better because I feel so great.
Some people love different types of exercises that make their bodies feel invigorated. That’s great! While exercising may result in weight loss, weight loss does not have to be the focus. Instead, if you focus on making yourself feel good, you will bring that joy with you no matter what the scale says.
Wedding planning can be an extraordinarily stressful time, so weight aside, you should be making sure to your body well and help it feel as good as possible.
Remember, Your Partner Loves You as You Are!
Presumably, your partner loves you exactly as you are and is looking forward to marrying you (if not, you may want to rethink your wedding). Once again, self-love can be more difficult than believing that others love us. Know that you are about to marry someone who loves you (and your body), and focus on celebrating that love, not on the numbers on the scale.
I know that there is a lot of pressure on women to lose weight before their weddings. While each person needs to decide what is best for her, there are many ways to love your body just as it is. We can all look great and feel great on our big days without engaging in unhealthy calorie restriction.