I have always felt ashamed of my body. {with Antonia Hartley}

Do you feel shame around your relationship with food and your body? Are you worried about disclosing your eating behavior to a current partner or loved one? Do you find yourself thinking about food all the time? Listen now for some concrete solutions to overcome these barriers to food peace.

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

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Episode’s Key Points:

  • Shame is so common in the eating disorder experience!!
  • Antonia Hartley joins to help tackle this letter writer’s struggles…
  • Eating disorders make us feel so alone and isolated, but there are many people dealing with the same issues.
  • Insight and awareness are vital to finding recovery and healing, but it can only take you so far. It’s important to work with a dietitian or other eating disorder professional to find lasting recovery and make changes!
  • Finding a Health at Every Size dietitian to work with is SUPER important to make sure you’re in a safe environment to find help.
  • If you’re thinking about food all day long, definitely inquire if you’re eating enough! Sometimes restriction is physical or mental, and adequacy with food is very important!! If you’re bingeing, it’s likely that you’re NOT getting enough, no matter what size you are.
  • It’s NOT as simple as calories in, calories out. Our metabolism is MUCH more complicated than that!
  • Sometimes there is fear in letting go of our eating disorder because there is a small part of us that feels these diet rules are serving us in some way… but they’re not!
  • “Honesty is the antithesis of eating disorder behavior.” – Antonia
  • Relationships are SO important in eating disorder recovery! Be honest with those you love, and set the boundaries around triggers.
  • Eating behaviors can be a messenger for our emotions or our needs… listen to them!
  • If you’re in a situation where someone in your life is consistently triggering you, don’t be afraid to bring them into a therapy session with you to parse out exactly what you need from them as a loved one. Remember, we live in diet-culture world, so give your loved ones some time to adjust to this new way of life!
  • Be aware of your own internalized fat stigma when exploring recovery.
  • You weren’t born with food rules!! These are LEARNED behaviors and “truths.”
  • Checking back in with your treatment team post-recovery is SO important! Remember, we live in a world that hasn’t recovered from its own eating disorder, so having a supportive community around you is essential for maintaining recovery.
  • On feminism: Feminism is for everyone, not just women! Ending sexism is good for everyone.
  • Ending weight stigma helps everyone!

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.

I want to hide my bad habits from my kids {with Lindsay Stenovec}

Do you deal with binge eating? Did you experience bullying, specifically within your own family, that relates to your body shape or size? Have you experienced sexual abuse, and feel that it has impacted your relationship with food and your body? Are you trying to set a healthy example for your own children after having a difficult relationship with food in your past? Listen now for some expert advice on how to cope with these body trust struggles.

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Check out this summer’s special blog post series: Empowering Your PCOS Journey. It aims to help you understand PCOS, improve your relationship with food, and advocate for better care. You will be hearing from nutrition grad student Kimberly Singh and her experiences with PCOS as well as evidenced based info to help arm yourself with the most up-to-date research. Find it here now: JulieDillonRD.com/PCOSseries

Episode’s Key Points:

  • Sometimes our family environments can be just as toxic as this culture that we live in… remember, we ALL live in diet culture!! But that doesn’t make our family’s actions okay.
  • Abuse, physical or mental, can have a profound impact on our relationship with food and our body.
  • Lindsay Stenovec of The Nurtured Mama joins to talk about the complex interactions of motherhood and our relationship with food!
  • Processing this kind of trauma is essential… find a therapist to work through these difficult emotions and to help you cope with your past!
  • Sometimes we use food to cope with our emotions… this is totally understandable, but we can take steps to help heal this part of our relationship with food if we find it interfering with us living our lives.
  • We are all doing the very best that we can under our own circumstances! This doesn’t make us a failure or a fraud.
  • How do we feed others when we’ve had such a fraught relationship with food and body ourselves?
  • As parents, we do our best to shield our children from pain, especially from pain that we have experienced ourselves. Many mamas are trying to shield their children from the pain that they themselves experienced in relation to food and body… but sometimes this backfires when parents do so by trying to get their children to lose weight or to eat in a “perfect” way.
  • Feeling acceptable is SO important to finding body peace and body trust! Instead of repeating the same cycle of trying to control your own child’s food intake or body shape, focus on the unconditional acceptance you have for your child and help them to foster this body acceptance in themselves, no matter the outside influences.
  • We should ALWAYS feel safe at home, even if we live in diet-culture world!
  • We’re all just doing the best that we can!!
  • What does it mean to eat in a “healthy” way? How do we make peace with food and our bodies?
  • Ellyn Satter’s definition of normal eating is a helpful resource!!
  • Healthy eating is more about being connected to life, not about what we put in our bodies.
  • Our relationship with food and our bodies is about very complicated, difficult, and personal truths. It has to do with the food, but it also doesn’t! Our past has a HUGE impact on all of this, and it’s SO important to find support around figuring all of this stuff out. Find a trauma, Health at Every Size, and eating-disorder-trained therapist or dietitian to help you along this journey!!
  • Raising children brings up the difficult parts in ourselves that still need more work.
  • Going to therapy is a BRAVE choice! It is hard, but it gives us the tools to move forward in our lives and find healing.
  • Stress, discomfort, and feeling like a fraud are messages from our body! These emotions mean there is something that needs to be addressed within.
  • Secretive eating, shame, and hiding of food is an understandable reaction to growing up in an environment that body and food shamed you! The important question is not, “How do I stop,” but, “What do these actions tell me about my needs?”
  • Sometimes we don’t learn sustainable coping skills as a child… therapy can help us bolster our toolbox of coping mechanisms as adults!
  • Normal eating is FLEXIBLE!!! Normal eating is trusting our body to make up for our “mistakes” in our eating, and being compassionate about our choices.
  • In the end, it is JUST food.
  • When you trust your body to take care of yourself, it’ll do the best that it can.

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.

I only eat in front of the TV + want to change. {with Rachel Cole}

Do you tend to eat on the couch and with distractions, rather than at the dining room table? Are you someone that avoids the dining room table because of past trauma related to mealtime? Are you just trying to navigate this whole food peace journey, and are looking for some direction? Listen now for some steps you can take today.

Subscribe and leave a review here in just seconds.

Check out this summer’s special blog post series: Empowering Your PCOS Journey. It aims to help you understand PCOS, improve your relationship with food, and advocate for better care. You will be hearing from nutrition grad student Kimberly Singh and her experiences with PCOS as well as evidenced based info to help arm yourself with the most up-to-date research.

We are so excited to release our first blog post on Wednesday June 14th.

Episode’s Key Points:

  • Vulnerability is a part of healing our relationship with food, but there is also a time and place for NOT being vulnerable! It’s all about balance.
  • Rachel Cole joins to talk more about vulnerability and food peace!
  • Having a nourishing and safe place during mealtime as a child is super important! If we don’t have that, it can really impact our relationship with food and eating in adulthood.
  • Expand your choices!! Your food behavior shouldn’t be dictated but “should’s,” but instead by what you honestly want to do.
  • There’s a time and a place for non-distracted eating, but don’t force it!
  • Eat where you feel SAFE.
  • There’s no timeline, should’s, or black and white thinking… it’s all about being “choiceful!”
  • Pleasure is an important part of the eating experience, and we should embrace that. Make sure that the food you’re eating is something that you WANT to experience.
  • How do we re-parent our traumatized childhood selves without giving them all the power? Reach out to a therapist to work through this struggle, and have an active dialogue with that child!
  • Put in the effort to make the dining area welcoming and safe… create a warm environment, and make the area available to you with zero pressure to eat there.
  • Make small steps… what would it be like to have one meal at the table? Or just a cup of tea? Start with the lowest hanging fruit! Immerse yourself in the experience with non-judgmental awareness.
  • We should strive to make ALL areas of our literal and metaphorical houses welcoming and comfortable for us.
  • Have compassion for the ways that we take care of ourselves, even if our coping mechanisms aren’t the most sustainable!!
  • If your experience doesn’t feel good, start getting curious about what would make it feel better.
  • EXPERIMENT!! Explore, get feedback from your body and your emotions, and continue to check in.
  • We are the expert of our own bodies… connect to your body, embrace embodiment, and explore body trust!
  • Listen to a podcast or invite or call a friend while eating if you’re feeling lonely and want company, and don’t feel like watching the television.
  • Don’t be afraid to reach out for support in any capacity to help you through this 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.

How do I deal with all these feelings when not emotionally eating?

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Have you numbed out using emotional eating or binge eating yet now finding ways to stop? Sounds great, right?!? Not so fast: How do you tolerate these tough emotions? Will they ever end? Have you found alternatives to emotional eating, but are now dealing with confronting these emotions for the first time without the ability to use food as a buffer? Listen now for some tips on handling this part of the food peace journey.

This episode is brought to you by Pursuing Private Practice Masterclass. Ready to start doing things your way and kiss the corporate world goodbye? Details here and remember the super secret discount code BOSS for 10% off.

Subscribe and leave a review here in just seconds.

Episode’s Key Points:

  • Intuitive Eating: a way of experiencing food WITHOUT food rules… following your inner wisdom to determine what and how much to eat.
  • Our relationship with food MIRRORS how we relate to the world!
  • Intuitive eating will lead to experiencing a more intuitive life in ALL regards.
  • Learning how to eat intuitively in response to hunger and fullness cues, learning to tolerate emotions without food, and learning how to type on the computer without looking at the keys are all similar experiences!! (Listen for the full metaphor… it makes sense, I promise!) It all may feel a bit obsessive at first, or carry a sense of hyper-awareness… but you’re learning a new skill, and that’s okay! It will calm down and feel more natural eventually.
  • Do we always need to feel all of our feelings?? Yes and no.
  • Manage your emotions like you’re making holes in a volcano! Find ways to release before you explode. Work with a therapist or counselor to help you find ways to release your emotions that work for you.
  • We must acknowledge and honor the trauma we’ve experienced! Work with a therapist to process this trauma.
  • Sometimes being aware ALL of the time of our hard emotions can be exhausting! Sometimes we have to distract ourselves from our emotions so that we can get things done. Just don’t let them build up or rely on these distraction techniques too heavily!

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.

Will I ever trust myself with sugar?

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Are you feeling lost without all your diet rules? Are you struggling with the phase of intuitive eating where you give yourself permission to eat all foods? Do you feel chaotic, scared, and exhilarated all at the same time? Are you worried that this phase is never going to end, and your relationship with food is never going to calm down? Listen now to start working through these struggles.

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Episode’s Key Points:

  • When we are trying to learn a new way to eat, we have to recognize the old rules that dictated our way of eating in the past. We also need to recognize the harm that these rigid rules inflicted on our body, emotions, and relationships!!
  • The “calm” that comes with strict food rules is an ILLUSION! These rules are not nourishing or comforting.
  • This new way of intuitive eating has NO rules because our bodies are not meant to be controlled or regulated.
  • Willpower should not be associated with food intake. Instead, food intake should be thought of like a pendulum! Think about how a pendulum evens itself out… if you pull it back and allow the pendulum’s swings to peter out on their own, its movements become much less erratic. But if you continue to pull it back and don’t allow it that time to settle, it will continue to swing from one extreme to another. The more the pendulum is pulled, the more it reacts!
  • Give yourself time to heal!! Diet rules are ingrained in us from such a young age, and we have a lot of unlearning to do. This will take TIME.
  • Your brain will likely start to crave a return to diets and rigidity… notice these thoughts, but try not to act on them.
  • Be COMPASSIONATE for where you are in the moment!!
  • An eating disorder is a monster that sucks the life out of people affected, including family. Self-compassion is essential for recovery.
  • If a person is in strong recovery, settling into intuitive eating can take at least a year… give yourself time!!
  • Weight restoration: for many people in recovery, eating a lot more food during recovery to satiate the body post-eating disorder is very necessary! Gaining weight can be a super hard experience though, so be patient and kind to yourself.
  • We live in a world that considers dieting to be “normal” eating… but it’s not! Our world is dealing with its own eating disorder.
  • Food and recovery are not black and white. There is so much gray area in our intentions!!
  • Having a recovery team, including a therapist and a weight-inclusive dietitian, is essential to successful recovery.
  • Why are carbohydrates getting such a bad rep?? Every cell in our body needs glucose… which is what carbs break down into when we digest them!
  • The food addiction issue: if you feel like you aren’t allowed to eat something and eventually “give in,” it can feel like certain foods are addictive. But if you give yourself permission to eat all foods, “addictive” foods lose their power!
  • The more one is deprived of a food, the more their body is going to want to eat it!!
  • Even though intuitive eating and recovery can feel like you’re walking a tight rope without a safety net underneath you when you first walk away from dieting and eating disorders, in the long run you are pursuing healing and health!!

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 @FoodPeaceRDN.