Food Freedom

why diet culture has weight loss backwards

woman cutting vegetables

Aaah, diet culture. We follow it blindly in the hopes of weight loss, listen to the rules, and one day, it all goes out the window. We blame ourselves. Why? Diet culture has weight loss backwards, yet we follow it down a black hole.

It looks something like this:

We want to lose weight, so we start a diet. (Must. Eat. Everything. Night. Before.) We listen to someone telling us what to eat. Our personal trainer, nutritionist, Dr. Google, or the fitness blogger with abs.

On our quest for weight loss, we try it all.

  • We eat the salad with grilled chicken (dressing on the side of course) when we are starving and would kill for some sweet potatoes or pasta.
  • We say ‘no thanks, I’m good’ when offered our favorite piece of funfetti cake at our nephew’s birthday party.
  • We want some fruit in between our meals since we are hungry, but we are at our caloric limit for the day. We white knuckle.
  • We order the broiled fish and asparagus at an authentic Italian restaurant. But we are salivating at the sight of our best friend’s pesto gnocchi.

One day, something gives. We throw in the towel. We say ‘f this.’ Weight loss is too hard. We stop listening.

And when we stop listening, all rationalization goes out the window. We hit up the drive-thrus. We eat the cereal out of the box. We eat the cold leftovers, but dear god cannot microwave them as we have 8 minutes before our partner gets home.

Basically, we fail. And we fail hard, and we can’t pinpoint as to why.

Now, let’s rewind, and not listen to diet culture, shall we?

I’m going to paint a picture for ya.

  • You know which foods make you feel good, and you know which foods make you feel less-than. How do you know? Because you eat them.
  • You restrict nothing.
  • You eat which foods make you feel best in that moment. Craving some hearty grilled cheese or a turkey sandwich? You eat it.
  • Movie night with your partner and want some popcorn? You eat that buttery goodness.

What is the difference? What is it that you do that you haven’t done before?

You listen to yourself. You listen to your body. Weight loss isn’t your priority

You are able to stop when you are comfortably satisfied. You don’t have a desire to overeat anymore, because you know you can have this fabulous buttery popcorn anytime you choose.

You know what foods make you feel amazing, and you eat them the most of the time. The foods that make you feel meh but are too-damn-delicious-for-words, you eat that too. When it feels right, and when it’s worth it. And that is completely up to you.

Sometimes, you’ll have the funfetti cake. And it’s freaking amazing. Sometimes, you just aren’t in the mood for pesto gnocchi, but the herb salmon with vegetables sounds fantastic. Sometimes, you get a bit irritable if you have a carb heavy breakfast, so you happily stick with the eggs and avocado omelette.

That is the difference. Weight loss is a natural result.

When you are listening to yourself, satisfying both your brain and body, while simultaneously not overeating due to guilt or outside pressures, don’t be surprised when your clothes are looser without you even noticing.

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