Before you pick out another New Year’s resolution diet, I beg you to reconsider. If diets work, why do you end up on one every year?
Diets come from a 60 billion dollar a year industry. Billion. These rich folks tell us we can’t trust ourselves around food, and we need them. Their lists, supplements, gimmicks, books, potions, rules, lies. We have trusted the diet industry with our lives, but are we actually healthier?
Instead of bringing us closer to health, chronic diseases are increasing. So are eating disorders, the most life threatening of all mental illnesses. Diets promise weight loss yet I challenge you to find one weight loss study with a low drop out rate showing weight maintenance for more than two years. This research stops by one year because after that weight starts to be regained. Instead of the weight loss industry, we need to rename it the weight cycling industry. My frustration: we give this industry our hard-earned money and it doesn’t even work.
I am calling out the diet industry as money hungry frauds. Instead of bringing us health, peace, and weight loss they are robbing us of joy.
There is an alternative way to eat and promote health. I challenge you to live one year without dieting. Instead of categorizing foods into eat this not that, resolve to live your life. What will one year without dieting look like?
Reconnect with Your Eating Wisdom
Life without rigid food lists may bring to mind bingeing, food chaos, or unhealthy living. At least that is what diet
companies sell us to believe. Instead of a list of safe foods, let your body decide how much to eat and what to choose from. You may have seen a baby cry when hungry and show contentment when satisfied. This system is well-known and trusted. You were the same at birth and designed to let hunger, satiety, and fullness direct you toward healthy eating. What changed? You were told to diet and this distracts and leads to distrusting signals. The more you’ve dieted, the farther you may be from this internal regulation system.
I want to help you reconnect to your innate wisdom. Attuned eating, also called Intuitive Eating by Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch, has been shown to support and improve health while healing one’s relationship with food. You can find more confidence building discussions on attuned eating within future blog posts and among those using #FoodPeaceChallenge on Twitter.
Reconnect with Exercise
While healing your relationship with food, be mindful of how exercise complicates things. Do you have to go to the gym after eating too much? Do you only eat fun food after working out? Although common, these are eating disorder behaviors. When we view exercise as purely calories in, calories out we are missing the point. The human body is designed to move and using exercise as a penance makes it a short-lived experience. I encourage you to find movement your body enjoys. This can become life long. A perk: joyful balanced movement further enhances your body’s eating wisdom.
Reconnect with You
Dieting places food in the forefront of our perception and dictates whom we eat with and where we socialize. It keeps us out of the present. Food does not deserve this power. It is time to reclaim the driving position in your own life. The Food Peace Challenge will help you reclaim your power.
Yes, this will be tough and I believe you can do it! If you desire this reconnection to food, movement, and your body please join me. I will be blogging, chatting, and posting using #FoodPeaceChallenge throughout 2015. If you need more support, consider working with a registered dietitian nutritionist trained in eating disorders and Health at Every Size approaches. Together, you can find the space to heal.