When Nicole got to college a little over two years ago, she entered a bodybuilding competition. "I worked out for three hours a day," she says. "My diet consisted of 900 calories: no sugar, no sodium, no fat and no carbs." In four months she dropped from 140 pounds to 118, with her body fat at just 9 percent.
Now 22, Nicole says she's gone from one extreme to the other, having gained 60 pounds since the competition. "My body has never been the same since I got off stage two years ago," she laments. "I hate showering because I'm reminded of all the fat that I have. I hate my thighs, hips, love handles and stomach. It's all way too big ... I feel like people look at me and think, 'What happened to that girl who used to be so fit and beautiful?'"
Hoping to be lean, muscular, and feel confident once again, she turns to Dr. Phil, author of The 20/20 Diet: Turn Your Weight Loss Vision into Reality, for help.
In the video above, Dr. Phil explains that our bodies have a natural set point. "All you girls out there who say, 'I want to get back to what I weighed in high school' — we're talking amputation here!" Dr. Phil jokes. "You have to be realistic in choosing what is your ideal body weight, what is right for you. Go to that place and be healthy in that place. Accept yourself in that place."
He suggests that Nicole may be flirting with body dysmorphia, and that the ability to reach a healthy point for her is readily attainable. He offers tools for turning weight loss vision into reality in his new book, The 20/20 Diet: Turn Your Weight Loss Vision into Reality. *
* A typical user of the Dr. Phil 20/20 Diet Plan can expect to lose about one to two pounds per week.