Choosing a New Path: How to Start a Life Without Dieting

  November 4, 2016

Have you ever wondered what is would like to lead a life without dieting or restrictive eating?

Do you believe it would feel good to stop dieting – OR – are you terrified of what will happen to your body if you stop dieting?

Changing your path in regards to eating is no easy task. It will take a whole lot of courage to finally say you aren’t going to deprive your body of food anymore. Our society is dominated by the beauty industry which intentionally shames your body to help sell more diets, weight loss, surgery, and beauty products. There is something out there at every turn to help you change what you don’t like about your appearance.  It can make your journey to heal even harder.

If you are a chronic dieter, you don’t know anything else other than restrictive eating practices, When you make the decision to end the dieting cycle it will bring up a lot in your recovery. While most of you who diet look at dieting and believe it is all about food…it’s NOT!

Dieting is rarely about food. Dieting and restrictive eating are more typically coping mechanisms. They distract you from your feelings and attempt to cover up the feelings that are uncomfortable for you.

It’s funny how society, medical professionals, friends and family convince you have to lose weight for health, right? Interesting enough, research shows those who experience weight stigma and weight cycling have health complications.

So, what if you are ready for life without dieting. How do you start?

Seek Support

It’s really hard to go at it alone.

Find a Health at Any Size (HAES) dietitian and therapist to be on your team! It’s important that you choose medical professionals who are supportive of you no matter what your weight is.

This support is so important because when you give up dieting a whole lot of “other” stuff will surface, having a dietitian and therapist to help you navigate these issues are so important.

Sometimes it’s hard to find someone who can support you in the right way.

Read, Read, Read

Self education is so important. Read HAES books that support you on your journey and help you understand the research and what you are going to be doing to support your healing process!

These are a few of my favorites that helped me on my HAES dietitian journey:

  1. Anti-Diet by Christy Harrison
  2. Secrets of Feeding a Healthy Family, Ellyn Satter
  3. Intuitive Eating, Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch, 4th Edition
  4. Healthy at Every Size, Lindo Bacon
  5. Body Respect by Linda Bacon and Lucy Aphramor

Be mindful of any books promising weight loss, they won’t help you in this journey!

Re-do Your Social Media

#1 Block anyone you follow that feels the need to show off their body, food or weight loss as a way to shame you. We all aren’t meant to have 6 pack abs, eat like a bird or want to continue down the weight loss path. Seeing this everyday will only lower your resilience.

#2 Add Fat Positive people to follow. You can use the hashtags #haes #intuitiveeating

As medical professionals, it is unethical for us to recommend weight loss. We have no long term studies that actually show that weight loss is effective long term. We have more research than ever to support that long term weight loss is only obtainable for a VERY small population of people, but it doesn’t make them healthier. So, why are you still striving for something that will only set you up for failure?

Join me in the discussion? Have you every given up dieting? Was it hard or did it make you feel free? Please comment below!





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