The Anti-Diet Movement is Stronger Than You May Think

The anti-diet movement is stronger than you may think.

Misunderstood and Alone

Yesterday was a rough long day. I arrived at yoga training in the evening pretty much trying hold back tears. I was tired mentally and physically. One of my students had a rough day, and I let it really effect me even though I know I shouldn’t. I was feeling overwhelmed with everything, and just not good enough. It was just one of those days where I felt like I couldn’t do anything right. I was comparing myself to others and worrying about what everyone thought about me.  I was already feeling so much different than everyone else and alone. Then I had to listen to a bunch of talk about diets, and I didn’t have the energy to say anything against it. I just sat there, feeling like no one understood me. I feel like I am the only one out of the people that I know in person who has an issue with diet culture.  People don’t even realize how often they mention it and where all the messages are. I didn’t used to either. This acceptance of diet culture, has made me feel like a weirdo overreacting to all of the messages that are given to us by society just because of my experiences.

Mental Health Plays A Role

People want to be healthy, and I believe they all want to promote being healthy. Healthy is tricky though. I went through a period of time that destroyed me in the name of health. I was already at what is considered a healthy weight when I started to try to shape my body, lose weight, and restrict food groups. All it took was once, and my obsessions and disordered thinking ran wild. Many people can’t relate to that. Many people don’t understand it. I know mental issues are the cause of many of my problems, and it is not all diet culture’s fault.

Diet Culture is What People Know

However, I look at what I have learned about intuitive eating and exercise, and I feel like it is something that has helped me so much. I feel like it is something that would have helped me mentally and physically before I even tried to lose weight. It would have helped me be healthy as a whole. I truly believe it would have changed my life for the better no mattter what. All people know is diets and diet culture though, and it is what is promoted everywhere as health.

Diet Culture Is Triggering

I just get discouraged like people don’t see a problem. They would rather blame mental issues than a problem with society. In actuality I believe it is both and society can trigger people who otherwise would have never had an issue. Mental issues surrounding food just get worse the more malnourished you become. The self hatred gets worse too. There are a lot of deep issues there.

The Anti Diet Community

My Instagram community of self love, intuitive eating, and exercise people get it, and they make me feel like maybe I am not so different after all. Then I join the people in my life, and I feel like the outcast. Like why do you have such a problem with eating “healthy?” I don’t know if that is true, but it is how I perceive it since diet talk and eating “healthy” is constant.  It is not that I have a problem with eating whole foods…it is the mindsets, the diets, the restrictions, and strong focus on weight and appearance that I struggle with.

I Support Health

I completely support health. I support eating all different kinds of foods with out restrictions though. I support the mindset of want to, not have to. Again, I think that mindset would have helped me before I ever even struggled with strong restrictions… the mindset to eat intuitively and exercise intuitively has led me to actually take care of myself and not worry so much about size. It has led me to believe that food is food and taking away all the labels helps create food freedom, happiness, and less stress around food. It would have helped me with eating mindfully and chewing my food for enjoyment and satisfaction instead of in the name of just trying to eat healthy, unprocessed foods for fuel.

Food Is More Than Fuel

Food is fuel, and satisfaction, and love and so much more. Sorry, but I just love food! If you know me, you know I love all different kinds too! I am very enthusiastic about all kinds of vegetables and fruits, meats, breads, pasta, and ice-cream and butter too! Mmm butter!  I am also cheap and like to avoid spending a bunch of money on groceries and eating out though too. Balance!

The Anti Diet Movement is Stronger Than You May Think

Yesterday, I felt so outcast that I thought about quitting. I thought about giving up balance queen and all my social media posts. I thought about dieting again and focusing on eating only “healthy.”  I think part of my purpose is to keep sharing though, even if no one understands it. It is part of who I am and one of my passions. I may feel a little left out now…  but I truly believe in this movement. I believe it is stronger than most people realize. A year ago, I had no idea how many accounts there were like mine about self love and intuitive eating and exercise, and just thinking about the growing number of accounts gives me hope that I am not an outcast. It gives me hope that I am part of something amazing.

Will you be a part of the movement, or will you continue to conform and let diet culture rule you?

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Ashton Bennett
Hi! My name is Ashton. I am a wife, a first grade teacher, and a dog mom. I am striving to live a happy, healthy, and balanced life, and hopefully inspire you to do the same. I am a cross trainer and yogi. I try to push myself to step out of my comfort zone in many areas of my life to challenge myself to keep growing. My main goal is to stay mentally healthy. I want to emphasize working out to feel good and create a healthy lifestyle. The goal is not to change my body, but love myself no matter what.

2 thoughts on “The Anti-Diet Movement is Stronger Than You May Think”

  1. Oh my goodness, it’s so natural to doubt yourself when everyone around you seems totally fine with the fact that they’re living steeped in diet culture! I can relate to that sadness and loneliness you described. It helps to start small, making little comments here and there. Planting seeds. I think a lot of well-intentioned people are just unaware of this approach. I try to keep in mind balance too- so it’s ok for you to decide to share it with them and it’s also ok for you to decide you don’t always want to have that educator/ advocate role and just want to enjoy your meal or day in peace! You are doing such important work and I’m glad you decided to share and keep fighting instead of giving up!
    1. I love the idea of just adding in small comments here and there. That seems less intimidating to me! Thank you for being so supportive as well! It helps keep me going even on though days!

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