Love Food Podcast Episode 73

Are you worried about your bikini body? Does vacation food make your anxiety spike and start the inner dialogue of self-loathing? Is preoccupation with your body getting in the way of you enjoying time spent adventuring? Listen now to hear my tips from a previous Love, Food Podcast episode on how to start living in the moment.

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This episode is brought to you by Pursuing Private Practice Masterclass.

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Episode’s Key Points:

  • Food should help us enjoy life MORE, not detract from the experience.
  • The best way to keep yourself bingeing while on vacation is to restrict before, and plan to restrict after. A lack of permission throughout the year leads to “indulging” while away!
  • When you’re on vacation, you’re there to enjoy the food and experience life the way another culture does… not to obsess over what you’re eating and how it may or may not be impacting your body size.
  • How do we work on permission to help prevent this kind of preoccupation about food and body during vacation?
    • Think about a pendulum (courtesy of Maria Paredes)… if we don’t interrupt the calm sway, the highs and lows stay pretty even-keeled. This is what an intuitive, normal relationship with food looks like! If we eat past fullness for any reason, the pendulum adjusts and we eat less at some point in relation to our intuitive hunger signals to make up for it. This is how our body takes care of us! BUT if we look at the pendulum another way, with a disordered relationship with food, we can see violent swings back and forth between restriction and bingeing. SO the only way to stop it from moving violently in the bingeing direction is to STOP pulling in the direction of restriction!
    • Take a hands-off approach!!
    • Check out my blog post to learn how to slow down that pendulum!
  • It’s ABNORMAL to have a competent relationship with food in our culture!!
  • Being human is about following rhythms… the seasons, hunger… we can’t contain these rhythms, but we should trust them!
  • When we step away from diets, it’s NATURAL to experience a feeling of rebellion. The best way to bypass this rebellion is to immerse yourself in this “vacation brain” while you’re at home.
  • Eating when you’re hungry and stopping when you’re full is simple, but it’s NOT easy!
  • Unconditional permission is FUNDAMENTAL to food peace and intuitive eating.
  • Restricting food will only lead to bingeing, and if you want to have a vacation experience free from food preoccupation and filled with cultural immersion, it’s time to take away the food rules and diet talk during your regular, everyday life.
  • Always remember to reach out to an eating disorder dietitian to help you on your food peace journey!

Show Notes:

Do you have a complicated relationship with food? I want to help! Send your Dear Food letter to LoveFoodPodcast@gmail.com. 

Click here to leave me a review in iTunes and subscribe. This type of kindness helps the show continue!

Thank you for listening to the Love, Food series.

The Love Food Podcast Episode 58 with Andrew Walen

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Are you struggling with your relationship with food and your body, but are finding it difficult to find the right resources to help you heal? Do you identify as a man and feel lost or like an outsider in the food and body peace world? Have you made peace with food, but are still struggling to make peace with your body? Listen now for some advice on how to begin tackling these issues.

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Key Points:

  • You are not alone, but we can appreciate that you still FEEL alone!
  • SHAME is a big part of eating disorders, and there is an extra layer of shame for men.
  • Andrew Walen joins for more insight into the male experience with eating disorders, body image struggles, and food peace concerns.
  • Resources for men who struggle with body image is severely lacking!
  • The male ideal: 50% of men wish they were bigger and 50% of men wish they were smaller… there is also a lot of focus on musculature, especially in the chest region (very different than the female ideal!). The physical ideal is also influenced by our ideas of “manliness.” Men must be tough, strong, and nothing like women (stereotypically feminine traits such as soft or weak).
  • Eating disorders within the male population are stigmatized because they imply that the person suffering from the eating disorder is weak… which is feminine and therefore “bad.”
  • Right now, the biggest thing is NORMALIZING the male eating disorder.
  • According to some research, about 85% of people who struggle with body image issues and eating disorders are heterosexual males.
  • We live in a society that drives us to self-hate because we are told we don’t measure up, and people of all ages and of all genders are constantly comparing themselves to those around them.
  • We all struggle with wanting to be appreciated and accepted by those around us!
  • It’s important that men dealing with body image issues have the inner courage to speak out and begin to share their stories of struggle and success so that the experience is normalized and more research money can come in to help people suffering!!
  • Residential treatment facilities for men suffering from eating disorders is sorely lacking… only one current center in the country offers in-patient residential treatment for males!
  • How do eating disorders look different in men? How do men talk about their bodies?
    • Focus on muscularity, strength, and dominance
    • Co-morbidity of substance abuse, specifically alcohol
    • Language around the body is less specific and less emotionally intense than a woman’s language around the body
  • Coping skills are super important! This can include learning how to sit with discomfort and learning how to communicate emotions.
  • Men are less likely to seek out treatment, more likely to wait longer before undergoing treatment, and more likely to rush through treatment and, as a result, relapse. This inevitably makes the fatality rates for males with eating disorders, specifically anorexia, higher than that of women with eating disorders.
  • Resources can help normalize the experience of men with eating disorders and body image concerns!!

Show Notes:

Do you have a complicated relationship with food? I want to help! Send your Dear Food letter to LoveFoodPodcast@gmail.com. 

Click here to leave me a review in iTunes and subscribe. This type of kindness helps the show continue!

Thank you for listening to the Love, Food series. Give me feedback via Twitter @EatingPermitRD.

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This episode is sponsored by my friends at Green Mountain at Fox Run.

A Taste of Green Mountain – Weekend Program Green Mountain at Fox Run is excited to announce a one-time opportunity to newcomers – an all-new A Taste of Green Mountain weekend program! Key strategies for mindful eating, mindful movement, self-care, and stress management will be introduced to help participants to eat, move, feel, and LIVE in the moment…to #BeHerNow! This opportunity is only open to new guests of Green Mountain. https://goo.gl/tCVQWl

Binge & Emotional Eating Weekend IntensiveThe Women’s Center for Binge & Emotional Eating is offering its foundational one-week Pathway™ program in an intensive weekend format. Participants will explore personal barriers and how to counter them with evidence-based strategies to prevent eating in response to stress and emotions. Dates are scheduled monthly throughout 2017 although capacity is limited, so visit https://goo.gl/xFh2up  for more information.

TAKE TIME TO INVEST IN YOU.It’s time to shine the light on yourself and make YOURSELF the priority. Here at Green Mountain at Fox Run, we’re all about embracing and supporting yourself through self-care. Through powerful tools such as mindfulness techniques, stress management skills, and movement that is customized to your body and fitness level, you’ll learn to practice self-care in your daily life. Visit https://goo.gl/si9wZi for more information.

Green Mountain at Fox Run’s Foundational Guide to Reaching & Maintaining Your Healthy Weight

Download Green Mountain’s free healthy weight foundational guide to learn how to embrace healthy (and pleasurable) eating strategies, cultivate a fitness practice you enjoy, and use mindfulness to overcome stress & emotional eating https://goo.gl/WwUDOr

The Love Food Podcast Episode 50 with Erica Leon

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Can you not remember the last time you ate without being on some kind of diet? Do you feel anxious and preoccupied about your food choices? Do you feel like you use food to escape your life, and avoid intense emotions? Are you consumed by feelings of loneliness, and find yourself trying to use food to fill that hole? Listen now to get some insight on these issues.

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Key Points:

  • Dieting harms us and disconnects us from our own innate wisdom about our health.
  • We associate the word “skinny” with positive attributes, and the word “fat” with negative attributes, but these are FALSE TRUTHS fed to us via toxic diet culture.
  • Erica Leon joins to talk about our cultural ideas around “skinny” and “fat,” and diet culture overall.
  • We often diet to feel in control, but inevitably it does the opposite and makes us feel out of control instead!
  • This pain is so VALID, and our pain surrounding food and our bodies is so, so common.
  • Perfection is not reality!!
  • Using food to cope is an understandable reaction to trauma… but this means that we must tackle the emotional underbelly of our relationship with food.
  • We must let go of dieting, begin to trust our inner wisdom, and understand that all foods fit! This process can cause a lot of uncomfortable emotions to arise, and so having additional mental health support is very important during this process.
  • Dieting, disordered eating, and eating disorders have a function! They allow us to get through trauma, and we cannot discount how important these behaviors are in the context of our journeys.
  • Therapy is such an important adjunctive piece of healing a client’s relationship with food and their bodies, especially when working with a nutrition therapist who may not be able to support clients in that mental health capacity.
  • Our relationship with food is about so much MORE than the food!
  • Discomfort means you’re GROWING!! Keep going…
  • The first step of intuitive eating is to let go of the diet mentality. This can trigger the feeling of being out of control, and having the support of a dietitian in this phase can be super important! This is when we start to tune into our hunger and fullness, explore food in a new way, and observe everything with non-judgmental awareness.
  • Feeling out of control with diets might be the first step away from diets… but this feeling does NOT last forever!
  • Part of this process is rediscovering foods you may have not liked in the past, things you thought you loved that you don’t like anymore, and just feeling it all out by asking yourself questions and reconnecting to your wisdom.
  • You are not alone!!!

Show Notes:

Do you have a complicated relationship with food? I want to help! Send your Dear Food letter to LoveFoodPodcast@gmail.com. 

Click here to leave me a review in iTunes and subscribe. This type of kindness helps the show continue!

Thank you for listening to the Love, Food series. Give me feedback via Twitter @EatingPermitRD.

gmfr-logo

This episode is sponsored by my friends at Green Mountain at Fox Run.
A special promotion for Love Food listeners:
Join Green Mountain at Fox Run for their Binge & Emotional Eating Weekend Intensive (January 20-22, 2017). Participants will explore personal barriers and how to counter them with evidence-based strategies to prevent eating in response to stress and emotions. For more information or to register, please visit https://www.fitwoman.com/therapy-services-eating-disorder/offerings/binge-eating-intensive-weekend/.

Immerse yourself in a practice of mindfulness. Join Green Mountain at Fox Run for “Mindfulness for Women Who Struggle With Food and Body – A Meditative Retreat”, designed to help you reduce stress, eat well, move joyfully, and guide the way toward ending eating and food struggles. For dates and registration information, please visit

www.fitwoman.com/weight-loss-program-reinvented/2017-mindfulness-weekend/.

The Women’s Center for Binge and Emotional Eating at Green Mountain at Fox Run is the only clinical program in the nation solely for women suffering with binge & emotional eating. Their insurance-eligible program is backed by over 40 years of experience and is staffed by licensed clinicians. Their program has created life-altering changes by helping women to manage emotional overeating through the practice of mindfulness. For more information, visit www.fitwoman.com/binge.

The Love Food Podcast Episode 47

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Have you worked really hard to stop hating your body but feel like your family keeps holding you back? Do you find yourself dealing with the food police within your own family, even after you’ve begun to make peace with food yourself? Do you have family that encourages fat shaming and diet culture, even when you feel like you’re doing your best to rid yourself of the mindset?? Listen now as Julie tackles this family-oriented topic and introduces some solutions.

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Key Points:

  • What is the experience of finding peace with food while family members surrounding us stay stuck in the diet mentality?
  • Fat shaming can come from people we care about!
  • Setting our own boundaries is SUPER important in trying to protect your own recovery.
  • The world that we live in isn’t one of body-positivity, HAES, and size acceptance. This means that when we pursue recovery, we are going against the vast majority of society, and sometimes that means our families. This makes the work harder to do, but it is that much more important!
  • Going against family dynamics is super hard, and when we actively follow our own path, it is common to feel pressure to go with the flow and back off of our own personal work in order to appease the family.
  • When we RECOGNIZE any emotion we are having, it automatically diffuses it and breaks its power.
  • How to beat body comparison: recognize the emotion, remove its power, and counteract with readily available responses of self-compassion.
  • How do we connect with our self-compassion?? We must actively find ways to support self-compassion for the moments in which we feel vulnerable.
  • Remember, our feelings and experiences are not going to last forever!!
  • Have some ready-made comebacks to assert your recovery, either by facing it head on or by changing the subject.
  • Surviving the Holidays and National Diet Month : #SoAnyway
  • How do we empower ourselves to connect to peace and health and feeling comfortable in our own skin?
  • When we provide new visuals for ourselves that are more size-diverse, it provides another option for our brains to think that OTHER kinds of bodies are beautiful too!
  • IT’S NOT OUR JOB TO FIX OUR FAMILY!
  • We should spend our energy on keeping ourselves safe, setting our own boundaries, and focusing on ensuring that we are providing the best modeling for our own family in terms of having a healthy relationship with food.
  • Embrace self-compassion, boundaries, and self-care.

Show Notes:

Do you have a complicated relationship with food? I want to help! Send your Dear Food letter to LoveFoodPodcast@gmail.com. 

Click here to leave me a review in iTunes and subscribe. This type of kindness helps the show continue!

Thank you for listening to the Love, Food series. Give me feedback via Twitter @EatingPermitRD.

gmfr-logo

This episode is sponsored by my friends at Green Mountain at Fox Run.
A special promotion for Love Food listeners:
Immerse yourself in a practice of mindfulness. Join Green Mountain at Fox Run for “Mindfulness for Women Who Struggle With Food and Body – A Meditative Retreat”, designed to help you reduce stress, eat well, move joyfully, and guide the way toward ending eating and food struggles. For dates and registration information, please visit

www.fitwoman.com/weight-loss-program-reinvented/2017-mindfulness-weekend/.

The Women’s Center for Binge and Emotional Eating at Green Mountain at Fox Run is the only clinical program in the nation solely for women suffering with binge & emotional eating. Their insurance-eligible program is backed by over 40 years of experience and is staffed by licensed clinicians. Their program has created life-altering changes by helping women to manage emotional overeating through the practice of mindfulness. For more information, visit www.fitwoman.com/binge.

Women with PCOS: Don’t touch diets with a 10 foot pole

Have PCOS? You can make peace with food too. Let's navigate this.
Have PCOS? You can make peace with food too. Let’s navigate this.

PCOS sucks. PCOS = polycystic ovarian syndrome. Never heard of it? Most people haven’t although the TLC reality series My Big Fat Fabulous Life is changing that. PCOS is poorly understood and takes over the whole body (more on that here). It causes facial hair, male pattern baldness, mood disorders, infertility, insulin resistance with ensuing intense carb cravings, and can lead to diabetes. The icing on the cake? PCOS makes some women fat especially around the stomach 1.

Women with PCOS often tell me the pressure they feel to lose weight. It’s no secret our world judges fat people as lazy, stupid, and without self-control. Do you know how hard clients with PCOS try to lose weight? Harder than you can imagine. Most of the time, women with PCOS see the scale go down only after extreme diets (read: eating disorder behaviors) that are impossible to continue. This is not lack of will power or self-control. This is human physiology. Even more, this sets up a human body with more disease.

I will break it down over the next few days why diets don’t help PCOS rather make it worse. First up:

Diets don’t work.

A fat person walks into the health provider office. She is given a diet.
No matter why they are there.

This is not a joke.

I am known to be a non-diet dietitian and many people try to convince me when diets are necessary: diabetes, high cholesterol and very fat bodies are common examples. And, I agree at times a person can eat in a way that is harming his or her body and possibly causing the body weight to be higher than his or her body would like it to be. Without fail, upon meeting a person with a very fat body, I find diets have been a central part of their eating experiences. Fat people seeking to lose weight are in a constant rotation of one of these:

  1. Preparing to go on a diet.
  2. On a diet.
  3. Bingeing after a diet.

The length of time may vary and yet for most of the population this cycle continues as long as diets are pursued as an answer. My question: if diets work, why do we need to keep going on them?

There is no research to date that shows any diet keeps weight off for more than one year. Not one. Almost every scholarly journal publishing articles on a diet stops at one year or earlier. Those looking further out have incredibly high drop out rates (the eating or exercise plans are too tough to stick with) or correlational. And my college stats class taught me correlation does not equal causation. You too? We should expect more out of modern medicine and research.

We know diets don’t help health 2. Rather, they are the greatest predictor of weight gain 3 and 95% of dieters regain all of weight lost 4. Wait. What???

Say no to diets. Choosing diet free living is not neglectful rather healthful. It’s not letting yourself go, it’s letting yourself be.

Click here to see Part 2 of this series: PCOS + Diets Can Promote Eating Disorders