This section pertains to questions we receive from those who are new to Weigh Down and just found us…

CDC’s stance on hunger and fullness and portion size:

The following is from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website (

Take your time! Eat only when you are hungry and enjoy the taste, texture, and smell of your meal as you eat it. Remember, it takes approximately 15 minutes for your stomach to signal your brain that you are full.

We learned as children not to snack before a meal for fear of “spoiling our dinner.” Well, it’s time to forget that old rule. If you feel hungry between meals, eat a healthy snack, like a piece of fruit or small salad, to avoid overeating during your next meal.

Many restaurants serve more food than one person needs at one meal. Take control of the amount of food that ends up on your plate by splitting an entrée with a friend. Or, ask the wait person for a “to-go” box and wrap up half your meal as soon as it’s brought to the table.

From the American Journal of Preventative Medicine

“Health professionals should continue to advise patients to eat less by choosing smaller portions and eating only when hungry.” (American Journal of Preventative Medicine, Vol. 43(5), November 2012, “Reducing Portion Sizes to Prevent Obesity: A Call to Action“)

Warning for overweight and obesity from the CDC and the Surgeon General:

The following is from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website (

Overweight and obese individuals are at increased risk for many diseases and health conditions, including the following:

  • Hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • Osteoarthritis (a degeneration of cartilage and its underlying bone within a joint)
  • Dyslipidemia (for example, high total cholesterol or high levels of triglycerides)
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Coronary heart disease
  • Stroke
  • Gallbladder disease
  • Sleep apnea and respiratory problems
  • Some cancers (endometrial, breast, and colon)

For adults, overweight and obesity ranges are determined by using weight and height to calculate a number called the “body mass index” (BMI). BMI is used because, for most people, it correlates with their amount of body fat.

  • An adult who has a BMI between 25 and 29.9 is considered overweight.
  • An adult who has a BMI of 30 or higher is considered obese.

For example, here are the weight ranges, the corresponding BMI ranges, and the weight status categories for a sample height.

Height Weight Range BMI Weight Status
5’ 9” 124 lbs or less Below 18.5 Underweight
125 lbs to 168 lbs 18.5 to 24.9 Normal
169 lbs to 202 lbs 25.0 to 29.9 Overweight
203 lbs or more 30 or higher Obese

Interpretation of BMI for adults

For adults 20 years old and older, BMI is interpreted using standard weight status categories that are the same for all ages and for both men and women. For children and teens, on the other hand, the interpretation of BMI is both age- and sex-specific. For more information about interpretation for children and teens, visit Child and Teen BMI Calculator [at].

The standard weight status categories associated with BMI ranges for adults are shown in the following table.

BMI Weight Status
Below 18.5 Underweight
18.5 – 24.9 Normal
25.0 – 29.9 Overweight
30.0 and Above Obese

What if my doctor has given me a specific diet regimen can I still do WeighDown?

Yes, this program can work for you! If you have preexisting health conditions such as food allergies, diverticulitis, cirrhosis of the liver, diabetes, hyperlipidemia, bowel resections, chronic ulcers, kidney disease, chronic constipation, etc., make sure that you are under your physician’s care and guidelines for foods and medication. For example, if you have chronic constipation, you must keep eating your fiber. If you have ulcers, take your medicine and do not eat the foods that upset your stomach.

However, there are a few preexisting physical conditions that may be alleviated when you lose weight and start eating regular foods in smaller amounts For example, if you have high cholesterol or triglycerides, losing weight permanently could possibly alleviate this problem. Again, stay in touch with your physician. Spastic colon and ulcers could slowly improve as you eat the volume of food that your body calls for. PMS symptoms are often less intense as you lose weight. Joint and muscle problems are improved in some cases.

You are not going to believe how much energy and life you are going to enjoy, as well as how much emotional improvement you will experience!

Can I still apply WeighDown principles if I have a preexisting medical condition? (Examples: diabetes both type one and two, hypothyroidism)

Over the years, I have seen many people lose weight despite their physical conditions, including individuals diagnosed with lupus or kidney disease who were taking heavy doses of cortisone, men and women diagnosed with cancer, insulin-dependent diabetics, and people confined to wheelchairs. There is hope, my friends. There is great hope for you.

Hypoglycemics And Diabetics

All diabetics who decide to apply WeighDown principles to their eating should consult their physicians. The most common form of diabetes found today is adult-onset diabetes, usually the direct result of overeating. In this condition, the body is overburdened by the ingestion of too much food. The pancreas is simply unable to produce enough insulin to handle the excess food. Insulin acts as a “gatekeeper” to the cells—it enables food to enter the cells. When too little insulin is produced to accommodate this process, food remains in the bloodstream in the form of glucose (blood sugar or blood food), and the result is an elevated blood sugar level. And when it is elevated, it can spill over into the urine—something that only happens when the kidneys are stressed.
It follows that simply reducing the intake of food will help get the insulin-to-food intake ratio closer. The key is to eat only the amount the body is calling for and not to eat too much food before the blood- stream is ready for more! A few good rules of thumb for adult-onset diabetics just starting out in this program are:

  1. Do not start off by fasting.
  2. Begin each day following the customary eating pattern recommended by your doctor. Then, in the late afternoon or evening, after you know you have stabilized your blood sugar, start looking for hunger. Fight desire eating in the evening hours, the time when most overeating occurs. It will not hurt you at all to cut back—in fact it will help you.
  3. Enjoy a variety of foods at all eating occasions.
  4. Diabetics who have come through the program have some- times been able to regulate their insulin level and eliminate medication by simply reducing their intake of food, which gets the insulin/food ratio closer.
  5. Occasionally, low blood sugar and hunger do not coincide. If blood sugar levels drop, do not panic! Usually, small amounts of food taken within a few minutes will make you feel better. This is not an open invitation to binge.

Juvenile-onset diabetics can also adopt the WeighDown approach and do well. Type I diabetics need to know how to check their glucose levels regularly and to adjust insulin intake accordingly as the volume of food decreases. They must eat when their blood sugar is too low and when they feel hunger. All diabetics must make sure that they stay under their physician’s care.
Hypoglycemics respond wonderfully to this way of eating. We counsel them to respond to hunger and fullness with sensitivity. By doing that, they will no longer go past hunger and risk the severe drops in sugar levels that they experienced in the past. Blood sugar levels then become regulated and there are no more extremes.


Let me begin by reassuring you that we have testimonies from women who have a severely under-active thyroid and have still lost all their weight. The truth is that when you truly obey hunger and fullness cues, you end up eating a small amount of food each day, and it is physically impossible not to lose weight this way. The normal size of your stomach is about the size of your fist, and the body will typically only call for about three to four saucer-sized plates at most per day. Hypothyroidism does not modify the size of your stomach. If you do not give your body more than it needs, then your body will have no excess to store up, and you will melt down to your God- apportioned size. It is as simple and basic as that. God created our bodies to take care of this all without us focusing on it. Just focus on Him and relax. He will walk you through this. He wants your heart and mind, so give Him all your concerns and trust that He will lead you in the right path.

Can I still apply WeighDown while pregnant or nursing my child?

Our bodies are fearfully and wonderfully made by the Lord! Eating in the parameters of hunger and fullness and eating a variety of foods is the natural, God-given design for the body—therefore, you and your baby will receive the necessary fuel the body is calling for. You may find that you are hungry and thirsty more often. Be sure to eat what you are craving, and therefore get a variety of foods. Be sensitive to what the body needs. For instance, for nausea, some women find that eating three to four crackers or the equivalent to that will settle the stomach and not interfere with your natural hunger signals. And finally, focus all your attention on our Wonderful Creator!

Some women who have weight to lose will lose some weight with- in the first trimester, but then into the second and third trimesters they maintain and eventually gain. But if you start out with weight to lose, do not expect to gain much during your pregnancy, because your body is already supplied with the excess weight that it needs.

Nursing mothers do great in WeighDown! Again, by eating ac- cording to what your body is calling for, you will desire a variety of foods and God will provide for all your needs and your baby’s needs through this way of eating. Most women will experience increased thirst because drinking fluids is so important for the production of milk. It will be important to listen to your body to cue you to meet this need.

You will not have to worry about not losing your weight after your child is born. Just start now eating within the boundaries of hunger and fullness, and trust that God’s plan when creating your body was sufficient to take care of you and your baby’s needs.[3] We have many testimonies of women who followed the WeighDown principles during pregnancy and had healthy, blue-ribbon babies and then returned to their pre-pregnancy weight afterwards.

If you have any other questions, feel free to call us at 1-800-844-5208. We offer several resources specifically about pregnancy and raising godly children.

Can children follow the WeighDown Principles?

Yes! WeighDown is a natural way for children to eat. Start by teaching children to get in touch with their own hunger cues and cravings just like adults do. They can be taught that all food is okay to eat, but they need to learn to eat according to what their bodies are calling for. By saying that, you can let go of the man-made rules and trying to control your children’s eating at the dinner table. Your job should be to serve a variety of foods so that they will not overeat—whatever they choose to eat on their plate is okay. Therefore, they can choose what they are hungry for within the context of you being the parent who is still in control of what is for dinner. As children adjust to the lack of power struggle over food, they will start allowing their bodies to guide what they eat. It is best to limit their sweetened drinks to small quantities at meal or snack times so they do not get the bulk of their calories from drinks rather than the food, and provide water or unsweetened drinks in between meals. Also, it is best if dessert is not set up as a reward for eating dinner. I have heard from parents who include dessert as part of the meal and had very positive results from this as the power struggle subsided. I personally did not associate dessert with mealtime, but offered it as an option if they were hungry later in the evening. Please check out the video/audio/booklet set Feeding Children Physically and Spiritually for more insight!

How much does it cost?

This program is one of the most affordable plans you will ever find! You will save hundreds of dollars every week just from being able to buy regular foods, not to mention all the money you will save from not over eating, not over spending and more! There are many ways you can access the material, but the main plan is found HERE.

The sale of this literature is not for a profit. This Ministry is supported by donations from participants from all over the world. The money is used for the print and duplication of materials, and any additional money is returned to God’s Ministry to reprint, reproduce, or produce other life-changing materials. These revelations and the Word of God are not for sale. They are freely given to those who cannot afford to pay for the reprinting of these words and videos and audios that are used solely for the furthering of the Kingdom of the One and Only God of the Universe. Every year, thousands of hurting people are given this material through seminars, books, and other audio/video products absolutely free. In addition to this, all of the products are priced well under market value. Please call our office if you have any questions or concerns.

Is there an exercise plan involved?

You will find WeighDown to be a refreshing approach to health and weight loss! No exercise plan required! You will learn how God can bring you to peace with food—never to return to the nightmare of endless overweight, yo-yo dieting, and “have-to” exercise regimens, but rather to a calm, non-magnetized approach to regular foods with the ability to approach foods such as rich entrees and desserts without losing control. Exercise need no longer be connected to burning calories; instead, it can be an enjoyable activity. You will be free!

How do I know WeighDown is the way God wants me to eat?

One way that we know that eating when hungry and stopping when full is God’s design is that He is the one who gave us those very natural body signals. Just as He gave us internal signals to know when we are sleepy and when we are thirsty, He also gave us signals to know when we need to eat and when we have had enough food. Look at young children and how natural it is for them to follow those signals.

In addition, His Word gives many indication that gluttony or overeating is sinful and that it is appropriate to stop when full (Proverbs 23:1-2, 20-21; Ezekiel 16:49; Proverbs 28:7; Ruth 2:14).

This is a very natural way to eat, nothing new or strange; it is simply the way that people have eaten since the beginning of time.

Do we have to count calories, grams, or etc.?

From the beginning of your seminar, you will never again need to examine fat, calorie, or sugar content in the foods you eat! Focusing on the food only makes you fall more in love with the food! You will STOP focusing so much on the food and instead focus on our Creative Father and the genius way He created your body.

You will eat regular foods again…really. No more fat-free cheese, skim milk or fat-free margarine that won’t even melt! Imagine being like your thin friends and enjoying a real cheeseburger, able to stop after half the burger and wrap up the rest for later…with absolutely no desire to keep on eating! You will not have to measure the food or count the grams-your stomach will guide you. Your volume of food will decrease as you focus on your hunger and fullness cues, and as the volume of food decreases, so does the volume of fats, sugars, carbohydrate grams, etc. you are taking in. Your desire eating will disappear as you are able to savor and enjoy real foods again…just what your body has been craving!

Stop examining the content of the food and instead examine the contents of your heart!

What does God have to do with weight loss?

Many people ask, “What does God have to do with weight loss?” Our answer is: EVERYTHING!
He created your body to work wonderfully, with intricate systems and an ability to maintain itself. However, the more that mankind tries to control these internal systems with dieting rules, the more weight people gain. God did not dictate the Basic Four Food Groups or command that we eat according to food exchanges and fat-gram content. He did provide boundaries for our eating – hunger and fullness. He created the digestive system to create a growling stomach when the blood sugar level drops to a certain point to alert you to the fact that the body is ready for fueling.

Unfortunately, this foundational cue to the body has been ignored for so long that most people do not even know what it feels like and think it is a bad thing to even find out! Aside from the damage to the body that overeating creates (after all, the body is His Temple), God is brokenhearted over the fact that so many of His children have learned to run to the food instead of to Him for comfort, companionship and acceptance.

People are giving their heart and passion over to something other than God! But the hard fact is that food is NOT a friend and it cannot give back to you; in fact, it robs you of time, money, self-esteem, clothing, relationships, everything.

But the One True God gives BACK to you! He loves to provide you with all these things and MORE if you will only take His hand and turn away from grabbing onto the food that your body does not need. Once you are obedient to God’s rules in the area of eating (hunger and fullness), you not only lose the excess weight, but you will lose the desire to overeat. Food will no longer tempt you, and you will be free to live life without a heavy heart.

God does not care about what we eat, so we should no longer feel self-righteous about following any man-made rules. Instead, what God cares about is how much we eat; He cares very much about – and is displeased with – overindulgence.

Is this just another diet?

No more dieting…period. Really. From the day you begin a WeighDown seminar, you will never again count a single calorie or fat gram, you will never again examine the contents list on a box, you will never again consult a food-exchange list or menu planning card, you will never again do your shopping in the dietetic food aisle of the grocery store, and you will never again step onto a treadmill to work off the candy bar you ate. There is no gimmick to WeighDown. We will never approach you to buy our foods or our pills or our exercise equipment…because we don’t have any!

Typical diets have not worked because everyone is using man-made rules instead of God’s rules. God has never asked anyone to eat food off of a list, count fat exchanges, or take an appetite suppressant! WeighDown doesn’t have any of those things. What we DO have is a future-a future to be filled and fulfilled. Hunger will be filled and appetites will be under control and given to God.

We fully believe that dieting – making the food behave by changing the ingredients or forcing yourself to temporarily follow strict man-made rules – only aggravate the problem of overweight. How many times have you tried “one more diet,” only to again gain back all the weight you lost and maybe more? Think about it: the more diets fail, the better off the diet industry is!

Today’s diets only make you MORE focused on the food as you must examine it, think about it, plan for it, buy special foods, cook in special ways, and constantly consult a food list to see what you will be able to eat today and what you will not be able to have (which of course, only makes you want it more!). The fact is, we will fall in love with what we focus on. The more you focus on it, the more in love you become with it. We must break that focus on the food and instead transfer the focus to God Almighty!

God programs us to desire and long for a correct weight and the strong knee joints and circulation that go with it. The motivation to be thin is not vanity – it is natural. God programmed us to want the best for our bodies, but He will not reward these “Band-Aid” diet approaches to problems of weight. We cannot continue to ask a doctor to suck out the fat (suction-assisted lipectomy) while we continue to stuff our mouths.

That ends today. You are entering the No Diet Zone! And this will be permanent – never again will you be restricted to tasteless diet foods and regimented “have-to” exercise plans. We are going to break that cycle today! The WeighDown seminars will teach you to approach food with control and confidence, eating according to the perfect way God created your body. You are going to eat much less food than you did before, but the wonderful thing is that you will not WANT more than that! Can you imagine being finished after only half a cheeseburger, not able to eat one more bite? You will be able to do just that!

Although the diet industry will tell you otherwise, the root problem of being overweight is not the content of the food we eat today. The problem lies in the volume of food that is going down the old hatch! Think about it: consumers wanted the fat taken out of cookies so they can eat more cookies!

God did not “accidentally” leave the Basic Four food groups out of the Bible! He created the wonderful flavors of blue cheese dressing, pepperoni pizza, and chocolate brownies. He wants us to enjoy them – within His boundaries of what is healthy for our bodies. The body is the Temple of God, and we must begin treating it as such. This will be a true lifestyle change that will benefit your whole family. Regular foods! No special meals! No special cooking! Regular shopping again! These are all blessings that God will allow when you begin approaching eating on His terms instead of man-made rules.

Does WeighDown promote good nutritional eating habits and exercise?

Do the results of these teachings (when applied) lead to good health?

Gwen Shamblin Lara, founder of WeighDown and author of the bestselling book The WeighDown Diet, is a Registered Dietitian with a four-year undergraduate degree in nutrition along with a Master’s Degree in food and nutrition sciences. She was a full-time faculty member at the University of Memphis and worked as a nutritionist for the Tennessee Department of Health. In addition, Mrs. Shamblin has passed her board testing and maintains Registered Dietitian credentials from the American Dietetics Association.

We have never seen so many people in better mental and physical health! We know that God’s ways encourage moderation and responding to the body’s signals. When eating according to hunger and fullness and without extreme food rules, dieting, or other forms of control, everyone eating this way ends up eating a variety of healthy foods-we just arrive at a means to an end in a different way. We believe that this is a healthy way of eating for everyone! The body is programmed by God with great biological feedback, so that a person will not want to eat the same thing for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Once the focus is off the food and onto God, each person can listen and respond to the body’s call for a variety of foods. We teach not to go against the body’s signals, in other words, not to overeat or under eat. The overweight person will listen to the body’s needs and will return to a normal body weight. The anorexic person will respond correctly to physical hunger and will gain the appropriate weight for good health. We agree with Scripture that physical training is of value for strengthening the body, but we do not believe people are to pursue physical exercise over strengthening their hearts and minds for God.

Read Before Starting: General Medical Information

If you are considering joining this program because the stronghold of food (or other dependencies) is having a physical impact on your body, as well as your spirit, we recommend that you consult your physician for a medical examination before you begin. Also, if you have any pre-existing health conditions such as: food allergies, diverticulitis, cirrhosis of the liver, diabetes, bowel resections, chronic ulcers, kidney disease, chronic constipation, etc., please continue to be under your physician’s care and guidelines for food and medication. For example, if you have chronic constipation, you must keep eating fiber. If you have ulcers, take your medication and do not eat the foods that upset your stomach. Reducing your intake of excessive amounts of food will be a positive change, but the body that has become accustomed to excess food may experience some unfamiliar feelings during this transition. God has made our bodies to be sensitive to what and how much of anything we need, but this internal system must be resurrected! Be patient and trust God ultimately to satisfy you far better than anything the world can offer.

Some physical conditions may be alleviated when you lose weight and start eating regular foods in smaller amounts. For example, if you have high cholesterol or triglyceride levels, losing weight permanently could possibly alleviate the problem. Spastic colon and ulcers may improve as you eat the volume of food that your body calls for. Joint and muscle problems are improved in some cases. People on cortisone and/or those who have lupus will still lose weight, but the weight loss may be slower. Diabetics going through this program will reduce their food intake, bringing the insulin/food ratio closer. As a result, many have been able to reduce or even eliminate their medications. It is very important to understand, however, that the process of regulating insulin must be done under a physician’s supervision. Also, medications that should be taken with food usually require only small amounts—e.g., one to three crackers. Please consult your physician in regard to any of these conditions.

Weigh Down has helped many anorexics and many more bulimics to let go of control and become at peace with their bodies. They have lost their focus on food and their obsession for thinness, trading this in for a focus on and devotion to God. While individuals with anorexia or bulimia can certainly benefit from this program, they should remain under the care of their physicians.

If God causes your heart to question, we suggest that you take your concerns to your physicians and counselors to prayerfully determine how to best treat your personal situation.