The exquisitely fabulous or is that fabulously exquisite Nigella Lawson recently came out swinging in defense of food and railing against the popular trend of ‘clean eating’. If you didn’t see it the full article is here and it’s brilliant, she hits the nail on the head when she identifies ‘clean eating’ as a way to mask an eating disorder.
Another brilliant article by Susie Orbach describes ‘troubled’ eating as ubiquitous, fat or thin, we are disordered eaters. It’s thought provoking reading.
If you’ve stuck with me this far you’re probably thinking ‘thanks for the happy holiday reading Susan, but what has this got to do with my Christmas feast?’
As I wrote in our most recent newsletter, stress about Christmas food and possible weight gain is rife, every year it seems to get worse.
The more restrictive, rigid and moralizing we become about our food choices, theoretically to bestow guaranteed health upon us, the more fearful and miserable we become.
When we bring joy, connection, love and trust to our preparation of food for ourselves and those that we love it benefits not only our physical but our emotional and mental health.
I’ve seen this quote or versions of it floating around for a while now. Incase you didn’t catch it, it’s supposed to be inspirational!! “Don’t be so worried about what you eat between Christmas and New Year’s, but worry more about what you eat between New Year’s and Christmas.”
How about we don’t WORRY about our eating? How about we CARE about our eating?
- CARE that your food tastes good, it’s never good to eat food you don’t like
- CARE that you’re eating food that feels good in your body
- CARE that you’re eating with people you want to be with (or practice self care if that’s not the case – Christmas can be fraught for some)
- CARE that your food has been prepared well
- CARE enough to take time to be grateful for the food that is available to you and for the amazing things your body does for you
- CARE about your body, and how it feels, so that most of the time you eat when you’re hungry and stop when you’re comfortable. Sometimes the food may taste so good that you go beyond comfortable and that’s ok too. Sometimes extra friends are on hand to share the food and you may not get quite enough, also ok.
- CARE about your body so you spend time moving it in a way that brings you joy
- CARE enough about eating to be attentive and mindful to notice all the aromas, tastes, textures and colours
Make this Christmas a time to recognize the miracle that is your body, and perhaps your New Years Resolution could be to embrace Body Positivity.
Ask Santa for a copy of ‘If Not Dieting Then What?‘ by Dr Rick Kausman it’ll be fantastic summer reading.
Susan Williams is an accredited practicing dietitian and health counsellor. She is also amusing, kind and supportive. Susan is the author of a number of great articles including: