Updated: Jun 19
So many of us feel a lack of control regarding food. We either under or overeat or don't even notice we are eating at all. Some people even obsessively think about their meals. I used to have orthorexia ( an obsession with food purity ). This orthorexia was connected to having shame about how my body looked, and even though I was not a skeleton, looking back, I had an exercise addiction style of anorexia. I would eat, but never close enough to the calories I needed. I was a dancer and an athlete exercising 10-18 hours weekly. Even though I looked amazing, I never felt skinny enough and still experienced annoying bloating.
One got me to change my food view, and my body was lifting weights, working with a trainer, and most of all, my spouse.
"You are saying very mean things about yourself, which makes me sad. Would you be that cruel to another person about their body?"
Ouch! That is when I realized how bad my body dysmorphia really was and began self-reflective work on my body image and relationship to food.
From then on, I decided to work on my views of body and nutrition. I want to love and enjoy food and accept my body.
From Food Obsession to Mindful Eating
In this short video Misted Forest shows you how to use mindfulness in your eating practice. The video includes a short meditation. Grab a small candy or piece of fruit and follow along.
For the next two years, I practiced mindfulness with eating, intuitive eating, and later body acceptance work. I did gain weight during this time. However, some people will stay the same or lose weight. Part of my weight gain could be from a particular health condition or medication, so keep that in mind.
Where I am Now (adding on to this post from a year ago)
Although I am more prominent now, I am much happier with my body and enjoy food much more. After 9 years of being vegan, it became time for me to let that go, and now the foods I eat are %75 vegan %20 seafood-based, and %5 other. Not having to starve if there wasn't a vegan option helped me regain more control over hunger. I want to go back to being fully vegan again in the future. Still, the new flexibility is better for my mental health.
Remember, you have value outside of how your body looks. At the end of the day, what matters the most is mental and physical health. If you have chronic health conditions like I do, obsessing over being skinny is counterproductive to healing.
I will review dieting versus anti-dieting, so keep watch for that in the future.
Good luck on your food healing journey; until next time,
post re-edited 6/12/2023