I love the whole ditch the diet movement that's been happening lately! So many people are realizing that diets just DON'T work, nor are they healthy. We know that 95% of diets fail and lead to weight GAIN not loss, which, is usually not the result the dieter is looking for. However, I'm also starting to notice how prominent pseudo-dieting is.
What is pseudo-dieting you ask? Basically, pseudo-dieting is unconscious dieting. You may not be following a "diet plan", per say, but your mind may still be in a diet mindset and unknowingly practicing dieting behavior. So, today I'm going to teach you how to know if you're a pseudo-dieter. You just might be surprised at what you'll find out!
Take a second and answer the following questions:
- Do you meticulously count calories or macros?
- Do you give yourself limits when it comes to food? Either amounts or types.
- Do you cut back on food if you feel fat?
- Do you skip meals if you overate?
- Do you go gluten-free, vegan, paleo, keto, etc. to be healthier or lose weight?
- Do you compensate (over exercise, restrict, purge) for eating "bad" foods?
- Do you stick to a strict eating schedule, and get anxious or stressed if it gets thrown off?
Okay, now that you've answered those questions, did you say yes to any of them? If so, you're likely pseudo-dieting.
It's important to understand that this is A.) not your fault, diet culture had been SO ingrained in us B.) not a permanent thing if you don't want it to be!
After restoring me weight during recovery from my eating disorder I lived for years in a state of pseudo-dieting. I thought I was just being "healthy", but these rules and restriction weren't healthy behaviors. I was still consumed with food thoughts. I still had very bad anxiety, which always stemmed from my food routine getting thrown off. And I still wasn't happy when it came to my relationship with food, I knew it wasn't right.
When I realized this is when I began my journey with intuitive eating, and I can honestly say it A.) saved my sanity B.) gave me more time and mental space and C.) increased the JOY of living!!!! Freeing yourself of food rules, decreasing the time you spending thinking about food and learning to enjoy eating again has been invaluable.
If you answered "yes" to any of the questions I asked, here is my advice:
- Begin by unfollowing anyone on social media who makes you think that pseudo dieting isn't dieting, or makes you feel bad about yourself.
- Start following those who make you feel GOOD about food (On Instagram some of my favorites are Spillingthebeans_nutrition, dietitiandeanna, and paigesmathersrd)
- Reading the book "Intuitive Eating". Check your local library or purchase here:
Above all, guys, know that food freedom is REAL and that you CAN spend less time obsessing about what you put in your body while still leading a perfectly healthy and happy life!!!!