Hey there! So… I’ve been a tad bit quiet on here lately, & there’s a reason. I’ve been trying to sort myself out & have been absorbed in my own thoughts (as well as studying for the RD exam). BUT, I think I’m finally ready to talk about some things I’ve learned in general – & about myself. It’s kinda heavy, so you may want to grab a coffee & get comfy.
Ok, so where to start… doing my dietetic internship elective rotation at an eating disorder facility has been completely eye-opening for me. I’m completely blown away & amazed at how many people are afraid of food & struggle with an unhealthy food relationship.
I am not too proud to admit that I’m above struggling with a healthy relationship with food. I’ve hinted at my struggles in the past – if you’ve read my ‘About Me’ section, you’ll know I was a member of the clean plate club and had the childhood nicknames of “Hoover” and the “Sugar Monster”. Does that speak normal to you? I’m not saying I have an ED or anything, & have never been diagnosed with an eating disorder. What I AM saying is that I have a disordered eating pattern & have had a poor relationship with food in the past.
Observing the ED patients has really opened up my eyes to some of my past behaviors and thoughts about food – & my body. A healthy relationship with food stems & is built from loving your body. I don’t love my body – not completely yet. I honestly can’t recall ever loving it, even when I lost all that weight way back when… I still struggled with my own image & saw a heavy girl in the mirror. I hope to change that though.
I’ve tried SO many diets & workouts in the past to lose weight & then fight to keep the weight off. I’ve done Atkins, calorie counting, paleo, primal, Whole 30, vegetarianism (for 1 year), keto… & you know what I realized? These are all forms of restricting food. Dieting. I didn’t trust my body to keep weight off, so I restricted food whether it be by following this trendy “diet”, or altering what I ate, or eliminating a macronutrient. I’m not saying I starved myself, but I probably counted calories religiously for the LONGEST amount of time – because it ‘kept me in check’ & made sure I didn’t overeat & gain weight. I’d usually aim for anywhere from 1600-1750ish per day, which most likely was NOT enough for my body & not what my body wanted. I’d most often end up going over in calories & then just feeling crappy about myself. It was a vicious cycle. It’s a cycle I’m breaking. I’m getting off the diet train!! NO MORE dieting!!!
I’ve mentioned previously, I’ve been reading some self-love books & working on loving myself & what my body is capable of & has done for me. I’m working on being kind to myself. I’m trying out meditating & being more mindful in general. I’m also reading the book “Healthy at Every Size” & “Intuitive Eating“, which have both been very helpful.
If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you probably have noticed my eating patterns have shifted. I’m eating what my body is telling me it wants – trying to eat intuitively & mindfully. I’m not putting foods off limits since that only creates more desire for them. After a bit, these foods will no longer be appealing & I’ll gravitate back towards my much healthier ways. I just need to make peace with these foods I’ve demonized for so long & to not eliminate any food groups because it’s supposedly healthier to not eat _____. I’m not saying it’s not justified for some people – I still agree we’re all unique individuals. Some of us also have allergies/intolerances/food preferences that we don’t like to eat certain things – & that’s ok!
Am I going to gain some weight? Probably. I’m pretty sure I have, but I’m not weighing myself. It’s a learning curve & I need to get back in touch with my body & my own hunger & satiety cues. They’ve been suppressed for so very long since I relied on a number of calories I had left to eat, or the time of day to tell me I should eat. I wasn’t listening to the most important thing – my own body!! I’m sure my body weight will even out to it’s preferred & set weight with time & as I learn to trust it.
Are you ready to ditch the diet mentality & to trust your own body?! Can you relate?