Are we in a diet culture?
Have you ever told someone “you’ve lost weight, you look great!” Or, as you justify eating your favourite treat, “I’m having a cheat day”?
Well, believe it or not, that speaks to our diet culture more about weight loss than anything else.
Experts say diet culture is a belief system that values, weight, shape, and size over well-being. Really it’s about the rigid eating patterns of dieting that sound like health and eating healthy, but really it all focuses on lack in some way or another.
Dieting equals lack. In my opinion, it’s a lack of nourishment, of nutrients, feelings, and happiness. We all want to feel happy. But we all know the association between what you put in your mouth, the shame, and loathing that you can feel in that moment and then how you feel about your body after.
From all the diets I’ve talked about over the years, from Keto to Whole30 to fasting, carnivore, and plant-based, none of them actually take into account how you feel about what you’re eating.
Enter the world of intuitive eating
So what’s the flip side of all this? Well, gaining in awareness and even popularity is Intuitive Eating. I, like you, have many questions about this way of eating. I’ve been told it’s not a diet, it’s a way of living, an approach to eating that can halt a lot of the worry of food that can rob you of feeling joy.
Today on EAT THIS with Lianne: Intuitive Eating. All the questions that I could come up with and fit in under an hour about this concept of a non-diet.
Special Guest Tara Whitney: Intuitive Eating Expert
Tara Whitney is a certified intuitive eating counselor and an intuitive eating coach. She has trained with Evelyln Tribole, who calls herself the Original Eating Pro and has written the book Intuitive Eating.
Tara herself is a published author and speaker. She’s leading a revolution of women who are listening to their own internal wisdom, respecting and nourishing their bodies, and ultimately trusting themselves in every area of their lives. Her latest book Hungry: Trust Your Body and Free Your Mind Around Food offers a fresh perspective on why women have struggled with food and gives them a path to set themselves free.
After you listen to the episode, comment below: What stood out for you?
What I’ve taken away from speaking with Tara is that really at the bottom of it all, it comes down to how you feel about yourself. The guilt and shame around food and eating, what’s underneath all that, is usually the narrative of ‘I’ve failed’ and ‘I’m not good enough’. It’s heavy, right? There’s no joy in any of that.
I don’t know about you, but this topic sure has me thinking about what I say and think around food. It also has me thinking about what I’m modeling for my two teenage daughters. As Tara and I talked about what was modeled for me by my mom, of course, I wonder how my nutritionist ways and influence have impacted my kids. There’s so much more to talk about on this subject, so in next week’s episode, I’m going to slightly pivot to talking about body image and just how we feel when we look in the mirror. This is yet another super important topic to shed some light on and start a conversation about.
Meanwhile, if you want to practice intuitive eating on some really easy snacks, I put together a little booklet on some of my favourite summertime snacks that you can take with you to a backyard picnic, or BBQ that are slam dunk winners.
They could even be a tasty add on to a meal that’ll make you look like an absolute pro; you’ll be the talk of the backyard-get-together for sure.
Grab my recipe booklet from sproutright.com/snacks for three great recipes and ideas including my favourite goat cheese dip recipe that I am always asked for!