Paulo Pabustan (AADP, C.H.C) is a Board Certified Holistic Health Coach and a Body-Image Expert who’s bent on redefining the conventional and often detrimental notions that we hold around beauty, health, weight and happiness. He was a former emotional-eater who hated his own body a lot and was just a flat out unhappy kind of guy turned master-of-his-universe; he resolved to be a testament for life's real beauty and goodness despite of the not so sunny parts of it.
As the founder of New Earth Nutrition, Paulo specializes in holistic wellness. By drawing upon the principles of self love, anti-dieting, intuitive eating and body positivity, Paulo supports his clients in designing a life that is nourishing not only for their bodies but also for their relationships, careers, passions and spirituality as well. He works primarily with individuals around body image issues, self esteem issues, emotional eating, binge eating, food addiction, chronic dieting and work-life balance. Paulo graduated from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and is accredited by the American Association of Drugless Practitioners.
He loves to stare at his ceiling during his free time.
My "After the After" Story
Now enough of that 3rd person crap...
Hi there! Paulo here, founder of New Earth Nutrition and the creator of the Art of (Anti)-Dieting. I founded my practice and started creating online courses because I feel that life is too short for unsatisfying cauliflower pizza, fake cheese, cheap sushi and to have a debilitating obsession around food and our weight.
I think that we should be able to enjoy the foods that we love and feel good in our own skin without the drama! My intention is to help you get to a friendlier place with food and your body regardless of where you're at. So, let's just handle this business of "healthy eating" once and for all so we can all focus on other stuff that are of more importance.
So why should you listen to me?
Now we’re all suckers for inspirational before and after weight loss stories but this is not one of those. This is about my after the after story.
See... Nobody really talks about what happens after the after. Diet culture dictates that we should vilify the “befores” and glorify the “afters”. The "befores" are typically stigmatized despite their efforts or underlying medical conditions because they’re all just lazy, right? And the “afters” are celebrated despite the hidden detrimental costs of their success. And we all want to be celebrated of course so we try and "improve" ourselves. However, we usually approach this journey as something static that ends after losing a certain amount of weight. But it doesn't really end there.
Now there’s this ever-present voice in the back of our minds somehow that tells us that we’re not “pretty enough”, “good enough”, “or lovable enough” unless we lose weight. Where did this voice come from? Maybe you got it when you've read about it in a magazine, or when you saw an ad on the tv, or maybe you've heard this from your own well meaning friends and family. One way or another it's going to find it's way inside your head.
I am one of those people who believed that voice and I did let it push me around for the longest time. But back in 2012, I decided to make a change. I drank the “Kool-Aid” so to speak. I rode the “health train” and I was on my way towards lasting health and happiness land! Or so I thought…
I probably struggled with my weight and my body image issues for the majority of my waking life. I really hated myself so I thought that I should change myself through discipline. I wanted the be an “after” story so bad I did things that are uncharacteristic of me. I fasted for weeks, drank various concoctions of cleansing juices, and I did extreme diets and exercises. All of that because I wanted to be good enough. I powered through because I wanted to be lovable. I forced my body into submission and eventually I did it. I lost over 100 pounds of weight!
Before losing weight, I was miserable and depressed. After losing the weight I became depressed and miserable. Did I turn my life around? I guess so. But not in the way that I expected. In essence, nothing really changed for me. Why is that? Despite the superficial bodily improvements and the hollow approval from others, I didn’t really feel any different. I feel that I was the same piece of crap person. I didn’t feel “enough”. That voice that I was talking about was still there. Something was definitely missing.
Now we all kind of understand that ultimately, we strive for optimal weight because it’s fundamentally about our health. But somewhere along the way we start doing it for the wrong reasons. And this pursuit, this grueling abuse that I’ve put my body through for the sake of an “image” seemed to have caused more problems than what it intended to solve. I ended up with a dysfunctional relationship with others, food, and most especially with myself.
Fast forward to the present day, year 2017…
I wish I could say that I’ve finally discovered the true meaning of life and the secret behind everlasting health and happiness. But I’m far from it. I’m still a work in progress and I think that I’ll always be a work in progress. Having said that, I can proudly say that I’m in a much better place than I was before.
Somehow, I’ve learned how to make peace with food and I’ve befriended my body, fluffy rolls and all. I’m finally free of my food hang ups and I’m honestly happier with myself, not despite of the undesirable parts of me but actually because of them. It took me years to realize that I didn’t really want to be an “after” story but rather I needed what it represented as a vehicle to navigate my life. I just wanted to be happy and accepted.
Seeing the world from this perspective is really exciting and I want people who are still suffering from body image issues and emotional eating to see what I’m seeing now. That there's an exciting life beyond dieting.
Still with me? If you've read up to this point then some of my words probably resonated with you. If that's the case then I urge you to enroll in the The Art of (Anti)-Dieting. I hope my realizations and the lessons within the FREE online course could be of some value to you! :)