I work with a lot of clients who suffer from gut issues, but today I'm not writing about that. What I really want to write - or rant - about is Diet Culture.
So many people in our modern society, especially women, feel compelled to change their body. Regardless of their current shape, size or health status. They are bombarded daily with messages about how "thinner is better" and even our environment often forces individuals to think about "how much space they take up." You're supposed to be a certain size to sit on a bus, in a car or an airplane. Mainstream clothing is made in a specific number of sizes. Start thinking about the number of places a "proper" body size means you can enter or participate in something (and an "improper" size means you can't). Society puts us in a box.
Restrictive weight loss diets are promoted everywhere: in magazines, websites, blogs, tv shows, billboards, and especially social media. We cannot turn around without being told what to eat and why what we're currently eating is wrong. Just look at any morning tv show or women's fitness magazine. The Diet du Jour is endless. And relentless.
So what does this do to us? Well, for starters, if your body doesn't look like the ones promoted in mainstream culture, you may feel shame. You may be confused about what to eat (keto, paleo, low carb, organic, vegetarian, vegan... the varieties of diets are endless). And you may feel unhappy in your own skin. You may not know what to eat. You may feel completely frozen and overwhelmed when it comes to food.
THIS IS NOT OK. (Also F-ck You DIET CULTURE)
We are not carbon copies of each other. We are individuals. We have different genetics, different lifestyles, different health issues, different family situations, different everything. WE ARE NOT THE SAME.
When did we decide to let someone else choose what we should look like? Sadly, this culture is decades, if not centuries in the making. But WE CAN CHANGE THIS.
* We can choose to be happy with our body, no matter what shape it is in or what it looks like.
* We can choose to pursue health without having it always be about weight.
* We can learn to trust our bodies and ourselves.
* We can be supportive, empathetic and open to diversity of all types.
It starts with us.
Let's give Diet Culture the Finger, and find a better way.
p.s. I love you and you are perfect. Just the way you are.