I made the decision to stop dieting and follow the path to Intuitive Eating and Living because I wanted freedom from dieting. It was as if I’d been given a gift, an opportunity to clear my mind from all the food and body “rules” I’d lived with since childhood.
I ate with relish, tasting the food I hadn’t allowed myself to eat without a healthy helping of guilt to accompany it for years.
I filled my body and belly – no more deprivation from dieting, no more counting points or calories, no more exercising only to lose weight.
I learned I could be someone other than a “dieter”.
I shed my identity, peeling off the layers like an onion. What did the world have to offer me now?
What I discovered was interesting, exciting and - frustrating.
Diet Culture’s Counter Culture
Fat activists have gained popularity through their social and political platforms. They are a force to be reckoned with as they advocate for societal acceptance of larger bodies and body positivity while they rail against diet culture.
The Health At Every Size (HAES) movement promotes feeling good in our bodies, self-acceptance, and healthy habits, regardless of weight or size.
These movements collide with the diet industry’s message that “thin is beautiful”. They are challenging the status quo and demanding that body shaming cease.
Times have changed. “Before” and “after” weight loss pictures on instagram are being replaced with women (mostly) eating donuts and “bad” foods with abandon.
The message is clear.
Diet culture is under attack. The medical profession, for example, has been called out for shaming larger patients and promoting diets when there’s growing evidence that weight is not a predictor of health and diets don’t work.
The slightest mention of weight loss for any reason is dogmatically rejected and dismissed as another trick to tempt us back into dieting and diet culture.
There is power in these messages and principles.
And yet, I find myself frustrated with what appears to be the lack of space or tolerance for anyone wanting to lose weight.
Surely, it’s Ok to want to shed weight when bodies feel heavy, knees and hips groan under the extra weight, or acid reflux is made worse by excess belly fat?
I believe it is.
There must be space to honor where we are at the start of our Journey, even when it’s still about losing weight.
If we don’t want a diet to dictate how we eat and live, we also don’t want to be told how to think, feel or what we need by any other group or movement.
So, where do we begin?
Follow these 4 Strategies to stop dieting, eat and live Intuitively, and create the opportunity for our bodies to reach our natural weight:
Address the underlying reasons why we use food to self-soothe. Create habits that lead to a healthier, fitter body, mind, and soul,
Eat according to our body’s hunger and satiety signals to manage the calories we take in and to make sure we are eating the amounts our bodies need,
Move our bodies from a place of wanting to feel strong and healthy instead of only to lose weight,
Make life decisions based on a deep desire to be happy, confident, and healthy. Be the person you’ve always wanted to be.
Let’s connect to see how you can take control of your life! You don’t have to go on this Journey alone.
Join me, won’t you?