Being Anti-Diet is so “in” and I am here for it! The Anti-Diet is on the rise because society has had enough with Diet Culture. Previous Dieters are saving money and time by disengaging in the billion dollar industry and encouraging shut down of the emotional roller-coaster that is dieting.
Please note, I am not a medical professional and the information below is not medical advice. This information is based on personal experience, please consult a medical professional if you have questions regarding nutrition, dieting, or disordered eating.
What does being Anti-Diet really mean?
Anti-diet is a focus on holistic health and wellness instead of weight-loss. It acknowledges health and wellness habits that are not centered around diet cultures push for a thin body.
What is Diet Culture?
Diet Culture is society’s push for thinness. Thinness is promoted as a social status to help ensure long term investment into diets and fitness programs that in turn benefit a capitalistic society, but I won’t get into my views on capitalism here… not yet anyway.
Tell me more, tell me more
The word diet has been replaced with terms like; lifestyle change, health, wellness, and living your best life. I was fooled, I thought that if I ate extremely healthy, I was only doing my body and mind a service and no longer engaging in diet culture.
However, these lifestyle and wellness movements still involved restriction and at the end of the day, they were still about weight loss.
When I broke up with dieting, I decided that I would not engage in any behavior that encourages restricting myself in any way, because when a “healthy lifestyle” starts making you anxious, obsessive, and overwhelmed, it’s time to question how healthy it really is.
Diet Culture discriminates
Diet culture doesn’t take into account that many do not have control over what is served to them, what their Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP or “Food Stamps”) Benefits will cover for the month when feeding their family, or what is available in the one grocery store they have access to in their small town.
Using the term “clean” and “pure”, or encouraging a complete shift to organic assumes a lot of privilege and ignores the important fact that what someone has access to is the healthiest thing for them to eat. Diet Culture pushes people to make “healthier” choices in order to meet industry standards but does not use their funding to advocate for better access to food and more variety at lower price levels. I digress, more on this subject in the future…
What Anti-Diet is NOT
I want to clear the air, the movement targets the diet industry and diet culture, it does not target you as an individual. The anti-diet movement is not to shame someone who still engages in diet culture. This movement aims to change the diet culture narrative, to allow more room for different ways of achieving being healthy aside from weight-loss.
It does not mean anti-health. If anything, it is MORE about health, as it is encompassing more aspects of health than merely meeting the social status of thinness.
What about fitness?
There may be a misconception that anti-diet means to stop engaging in physical activity or eating fruit and vegetables. Instead, for me, it is more about making a conscious effort to listen to my body and engage in acts of holistic self-care (click link to read more on the subject of holistic self-care) with the end goal of feeling better. So in short, yes, I still exercise and I still eat “healthy”, and am still anti-diet.
If exercise is not being abused, it adds value to life, when I respect my body and honor it, I do amazing things. If I don’t claim sugar as the enemy, it doesn’t have the control over my life it once had and I get to openly enjoy it, without overdoing it.
Always do what feels best for you and your body, you don’t have to agree with a blogger who has a long history of bad relationships with a variety of diets and anger for the industry that keeps promoting them.
If diets work for you, awesome, if you enjoy the routine you have built, even better, you do you. Just please, please, please, always remember the important aspects of life, choose to count more of the joyful moments that fill up your cup, over counting the calories that fill up your plate.