diet mentality

Food Psych #118: How to Stop Fighting Food & Your Body with Isabel Foxen Duke

Isabel Foxen Duke

Isabel Foxen Duke is back! The anti-diet coach and emotional eating expert returns for the THIRD time to share more about why we fight food and how to stop, why Isabel wants to destigmatize emotional eating, the problems with healthism, how the human desire for control runs deep within many of our decisions, how to handle triggers as a recovered person, her exploration of diet literature dating back to the 60s, her continued efforts to unpack her own privilege and social biases as a professional in the field of food and body image, and so much more. PLUS, Christy answers a listener question about irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and eating disorder recovery.

Isabel Foxen Duke helps women stop fighting food. After struggling with binge-eating for most of her life, and trying to overcome emotional eating and binge-eating through various approaches to food—Isabel finally discovered that these attempts to control her food and her body, were at the root of the problem itself. She now teaches women struggling with binge-eating how to do the very thing they're most afraid of, and the very thing they need to do to recover: let go. Grab her free video training series, Stop Fighting Food, to learn more about her work.

Grab Christy's free guide, 7 simple strategies for finding peace and freedom with food, to start your intuitive eating journey. You can also text "7STRATEGIES" to the phone number 44222 to get it on the go :)

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We Discuss:

  • How emotional eating is connected to diet culture, restriction, and fatphobia

  • Binge eating as a protective action against food deprivation

  • Set-point theory, Health at Every Size, and why the emotional eating narrative doesn’t make sense

  • The desire for control over body size

  • The general human need for existential safety, and the ways in which people try to achieve that through attempts at controlling different aspects of life

  • Relationship anxiety

  • Breaking down cultural expectations and social biases

  • The issue with aspirational images on social media

  • Using social media to promote internal acceptance of body diversity

  • Finding beauty in different bodies

  • Capitalism, hierarchies, and surviving a competitive society

  • Separating yourself from diet-mentality thoughts

  • The importance of claiming space and setting boundaries

  • Spiritual materialism and Buddhist practices

  • Unpacking privilege and tolerating when you’ve done harm

  • Dealing with real-world triggers using harm reduction techniques and stigma resistance

  • Healthism, body policing, and orthorexic tendencies

  • The inevitability of chronic illness

  • Measuring the stress and costs associated with our choices versus the potential gains

  • Redefining health

  • The “hunger and fullness” diet vs intuitive eating

  • Navigating digestive discomfort, chronic illness, and medical restrictions within diet culture and intuitive eating

 

Resources Mentioned

Some of the links below are affiliate links. Affiliates or not, we only recommend products and services that align with our values.

 

Listener Question of the Week

How do we navigate intuitive eating when we have health issues, such as IBS, without falling into orthorexic or negative eating behaviors? Is there a way to reduce the anxiety that surrounds consuming certain foods? Can we promote restriction in the name of health while also pursuing eating disorder recovery?

*This episode originally identified Lauren Dear within the Listener Question of the Week Resources and identified her as a gastroenterologist. She is actually a registered dietitian, and mention of her has been removed to avoid misidentification.

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Food Psych #110: How to Heal from Food Shame with Casey Berglund

Casey Berglund

Yoga teacher and fellow Health at Every Size dietitian Casey Berglund shares how she overcame restriction and food shame, how she went from having an intuitive relationship with food as a child to trying to manipulate her body size, why yoga was exactly what she needed to break through perfectionism, why she started thinking outside the box in her career, why it's dangerous to approach intuitive eating with a diet mentality, how to navigate diet culture as a professional in the body-acceptance field, and lots more. PLUS, Christy shares some insider insight into nutrition journalism, and answers a listener question about how to handle when a doctor tells you to lose weight "for your health."

Casey Berglund is a registered dietitian, yoga teacher, and media spokesperson who believes all people deserve to feel free in their relationship with food and confident in their bodies, so they have more energy for the important things in life. She owns Worthy and Well Inc., where she inspires smart and soulful women to ditch the all-or-none and eat for fuel, flavour, and fun. Get involved by claiming your free 15-minute Yoga Intro video and checking out Yoga for Mindful Eating and Living at worthyandwell.com.

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Ask a question about intuitive eating, Health at Every Size, body acceptance, or eating disorder recovery for a chance to have it answered on the podcast!

 

We Discuss:

  • Casey’s relationship with food growing up, including her experience farming and gardening

  • The transition from curiosity about nutrition to control and restriction

  • Body comparisons

  • The media’s role in diet culture

  • Perfectionism

  • The need for culture-wide education on disordered eating, the diet mentality, and Health at Every Size

  • The impact of food deprivation on strength and athleticism

  • Discomfort with weight gain, body changes in eating disorder recovery, and finding body acceptance

  • Casey’s and Christy’s experiences in nutrition classes

  • Healthism and orthorexia

  • The feeling of “not enough”

  • Yoga’s role in Casey’s and Christy’s healing journeys, including its potentially triggering aspects such as lack of body diversity and the “clean eating” or vegan trends

  • Restrictive nutrition trends (Paleo, raw food diets, Whole30, juicing)

  • Navigating intuitive eating and self-care-driven health choices

  • Casey’s experience doing her yoga teacher training

  • Combining mindfulness practices and nutrition counseling

  • Health at Every Size and responsible research

  • BMI, the so-called “obesity epidemic,” and fearmongering within nutrition and health journalism

  • The ethical problems with encouraging intentional weight loss

  • Evolving from a weight-management paradigm to an anti-diet paradigm as a dietitian or health professional

  • The need for community and connection

 

Resources Mentioned

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Food Psych #105: Body-Acceptance Secrets with Jessamyn Stanley

Jessamyn Stanley - Body-positive yoga

Jessamyn Stanley, acclaimed yoga teacher and body-acceptance advocate, joins us to discuss overcoming decades of dieting, healing from oppressive beauty standards, learning to accept her size and stop pursuing weight loss, the "yoga-industrial complex" vs. real yoga, her new book Every Body Yoga, being an Instagram sensation, navigating people's expectations of her as a yoga teacher, and lots more!

Jessamyn Stanley is the author of Every Body Yoga, as well as an internationally recognized yoga teacher, award-winning Instagram star (@mynameisjessamyn), and body-positive advocate. She has been profiled by a wide range of media, including Good Morning America, TIME, New York, Glamour, Shape, People, Essence, Lenny Letter, and many others. When she’s not on the road teaching, she lives in Durham, North Carolina. Visit her online at JessamynStanley.com, on Twitter at @JessNotJazz, and on Facebook at MyNameIsJessamyn.

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Grab Christy's new free guide, 7 simple strategies for finding peace and freedom with food. You can also text "FOODPSYCH" to the phone number 44222 to get it on the go!

 

We Discuss:

  • Jessamyn’s relationship with food growing up, including experiencing food scarcity

  • Coping with family stress and engaging in emotional eating

  • The impact of yoga on Jessamyn’s relationship with food and her body

  • Self-taught intuitive eating

  • Non-judgmental body awareness

  • Veganism, yoga, and classism

  • Trauma and eating disorder awareness in yoga practice

  • The intersections of capitalism and diet culture

  • The perils of pursuing weight loss

  • Educating children about Health at Every Size and body positivity

  • The intersections of fatphobia and racism

  • Challenging the urge for assimilation

  • The benefits of sharing our struggles publicly

  • The role of photography in Jessamyn’s body image journey

  • Self-compassion vs. shame and self-judgment

  • The yoga-industrial complex

  • The spiritual component of classical yoga practice

  • Size diversity in yoga

 

Resources Mentioned

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Food Psych #102: How to Handle Body Changes, Pregnancy, & Postpartum Issues with Lindsay Stenovec

Lindsay Stenovec

Health at Every Size dietitian Lindsay Stenovec shares why different life stages can be so triggering for food and body issues, how pregnancy and the postpartum period can affect our relationships with food, why we need to prioritize self-care for its own sake, why reflecting on your values and what you want out of life is so important for recovery from dieting and disordered eating, how she came to connect the concept of Health at Every Size with her interpretation of intuitive eating, how to navigate choices about self-presentation within the context of feminism, and lots more!

Lindsay Stenovec is an established leader in the field of nutrition for women and families. She owns a private practice in San Diego, CA, called Nutrition Instincts®, where she and her associate dietitian provide nutrition counseling in the areas of eating disorders, intuitive eating, prenatal and postpartum wellness and family feeding coaching. Health at Every Size® is integrated into every area of her and her team’s work. In 2015, she founded The Nurtured Mama®, a body positive movement for moms and moms-to-be that cultivates body confidence, self-care and a healthy relationship with food, one mama at a time. Lindsay is also an adjunct faculty professor for a local San Diego community college, on the Wellness Advisory Panel for a children's food company and speaks regularly to professionals and parents on the topics of eating disorders, child feeding, maternal self-care, pregnancy and eating disorders and postpartum wellness. Lindsay lives in San Diego with her husband and 2-year old son. Find her online at NutritionInstincts.com.

Grab Christy's new free guide, 7 simple strategies for finding peace and freedom with food. You can also text "FOODPSYCH" to the phone number 44222 to get it on the go!

Join the Food Psych Facebook group to connect with fellow listeners around the world!

 

We Discuss:

  • Puberty, anxiety, and the emergence of body shame

  • Lindsay’s experience with competitive and body-conscious sports like gymnastics

  • The feminine beauty ideal

  • The trans experience with eating disorders, body dysphoria, and body dysmorphia

  • Patriarchy, feminism, and critically thinking about our life choices

  • Preparing for the deep, profound changes that come with motherhood

  • The ways in which weight gain protects individuals going through menopause

  • The contradictions of being a mother alongside dealing with food issues and chronic dieting

  • Lindsay’s food and body struggles during her transition into college

  • The experience of being a Highly Sensitive Person (HSP)

  • The lack of intuitive eating education in dietetics programs

  • The arbitrary nature of calorie counts and serving sizes

  • Lindsay’s transition into work as an intuitive eating professional

  • The connection between intuitive eating and Health at Every Size

  • Diet culture, weight bias, and fatphobia

  • Body image struggles, disordered eating, and eating disorders during pregnancy and the postpartum period

  • The importance of embodiment during times of body change

  • Size acceptance

  • Vulnerability and community in the body peace and anti-diet journeys

 

Resources Mentioned

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Food Psych #101: How to Honor Your True Hungers & Find Body Acceptance with Rachel Estapa

Rachel Estapa.jpg

Size-acceptance advocate and yoga teacher Rachel Estapa discusses how being a larger-bodied child led to early experiences of shame and dieting, why diet culture's promise to "fix" us is so alluring, the connection between physical and emotional hungers,  why rediscovering her loves and desires in life was essential to her recovery from dieting, how the practice of yoga helped show her the path to liberation, and lots more!

Rachel Estapa, founder of More to Love®, is a certified life coach, certified Kripalu Yoga teacher, writer, speaker and social entrepreneur who educates and supports plus size people on approaches to positive body image and wellness, enabling all bodies to lead more empowered lives. Find her online at MoreToLoveWithRachel.com.

Grab Christy's new free guide, 7 simple strategies for finding peace and freedom with food. You can also text "FOODPSYCH" to the phone number 44222 to get it on the go!

Join the Food Psych Facebook group to connect with fellow listeners around the world!

 

We Discuss:

  • Rachel’s relationship with food growing up, including associating food with love and family

  • Body shame in relation to food choices

  • Separating the critical voice from the true inner voice of compassion

  • The line between educating others and preserving our own body-positive journey

  • Reconnecting to body trust

  • How intuitive eating leads to intuitive living

  • Creating a loving relationship with the past

  • Rachel’s first experience with a nutritionist

  • The importance of access to plus-size clothing options

  • Rachel's Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) diagnosis

  • The connection between physical hunger and emotional hunger

  • Rediscovering satisfaction with food and movement on the intuitive eating journey

  • The impact of patriarchy and misogyny on femme socialization

  • Yoga, eating disorder recovery, and embodiment

  • Reconnecting with and accepting emotions

  • Eating as an intimate act

  • Food as a part of our relationships and human connection

  • Navigating and pushing back against diet culture and the diet mentality

  • Rachel’s reasons for creating More to Love

  • Finding everlasting, honest, and individual body acceptance

  • The intersection of mystery and science

  • Tolerating constant change and growth

  • The trouble with deriving self-worth from external factors

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Food Psych #100: How the Body-Positive Movement Could Do Better with Virgie Tovar

Virgie Tovar

Virgie Tovar returns for our 100th episode! The inimitable fat-acceptance activist shares what she's been up to in the 2 years since she first appeared on Food Psych (episode #45), why you can't be body-positive and actively pursue weight loss at the same time, how the history of the body-positive movement left it open for misinterpretation, why fat acceptance and body liberation are better terms for what we really want than body positivity, how people with thin privilege can help the movement for fat liberation (and how that helps *everyone*), how her relationship with sex has changed as a result of some big changes in her life, why "The American Dream" can be so oppressive and why stepping out of it has been so liberating for her, and lots more!

Virgie Tovar is an author, activist, and one of the nation's leading experts and lecturers on fat discrimination and body image. She is the founder of Babecamp, a 4-week online course designed to help those who are ready to break up with diet culture, and she started the hashtag campaign #LoseHateNotWeight. Find her online at VirgieTovar.com.

Get $50 off Babecamp Summer Session June 5-30, a 4-week online course lovingly designed by body image expert Virgie Tovar for women who are ready to break up with diet culture and take up their rightful place in the babe pantheon. Just click on the yellow "flashsale" button at www.virgietovar.com/babecamp.html!

Grab Christy's new free guide, 7 simple strategies for finding peace and freedom with food. You can also text "FOODPSYCH" to the phone number 44222 to get it on the go!

Join the Food Psych Facebook group to connect with fellow listeners around the world!

 

We Discuss:

  • Virgie’s latest projects, including Babecamp, her online course that helps women break up with diet culture

  • Embracing body jiggle

  • Looking at diet culture and fatphobia through the lens of feminism

  • The problem with the shift of fat liberation and fat acceptance to mainstream body positivity

  • How the origin of the body image conversation lies in feminist and queer politics

  • The issues with “choice feminism”

  • How to have compassion for those pursuing weight loss while also calling bullshit

  • Fatphobia in eating disorder recovery

  • The importance of believing and listening to fat people about their experiences of oppression

  • The fear of letting go of the thin ideal, diet culture, and the diet mentality

  • How to find our own authentic happiness in spite of cultural ideals

  • Intuitive eating and liberating our relationship with food

  • The formula for healing

  • The path from intellectualism to embodiment

  • Self-trust

  • Sexual exploration and liberation

  • How to honor your genuine desires instead of merely following a narrative  

  • Trauma and sexual pleasure

  • Creating space for transformation

  • Self-compassion and acceptance as the keys to healing

 

Resources Mentioned

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Food Psych #99: How to Fight Diet Culture & Find Fat Acceptance with Lindy West

Lindy West

Lindy West, author of the book Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman, shares how she became a fat-acceptance activist, the roles that feminism and body-positive imagery played in helping her reject diet culture, her experience of finding love in a larger body, how thin allies to the fat-acceptance movement can help, how she's improved her relationship with food and what she's still working on, and lots more!

Lindy West is a Seattle-based writer, editor, and performer whose work focuses on pop culture, social justice, humor, and body image. She’s currently a culture writer for GQ magazine and a weekly columnist at The Guardian, as well as the founder and editor of I Believe You | It’s Not your Fault, an advice blog for teens. In 2015 she wrote and recorded a story for “This American Life” about confronting an Internet troll who impersonated her dead father and was half of the duo who initiated #shoutyourabortion, which landed her on the cover of The New York Times. She was named one of “Internet’s Most Fascinating 2015” by Cosmopolitan.com. Find her online at LindyWest.net, and pick up her book Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman wherever books are sold.

Grab my new free guide, 7 simple strategies for finding peace and freedom with food. You can also text "FOODPSYCH" to the phone number 44222 to get it on the go!

Join the Food Psych Facebook group to connect with fellow listeners around the world!

 

We Discuss:

  • Lindy’s relationship with food growing up, including being active as a kid, and the impact of being in larger body

  • Pursuing weight loss at a young age

  • The normalization of diet culture

  • How disordered eating behavior is encouraged and applauded in larger-bodied people

  • The Health at Every Size movement's impact on eating disorder diagnosis and recovery

  • Eating in public as a fat person

  • Food and pleasure

  • Living in a food-obsessed world that paradoxically subscribes to the thin ideal

  • Lindy’s experiences with fat-shaming and discrimination 

  • Natural weight fluctuation, set-point theory, and size diversity

  • Weight bias in the medical community

  • Thin privilege and the importance of thin allies in the fat acceptance movement

  • Lindy’s experience embracing fat as an identity

  • How the wedding-industrial complex is rooted in diet culture and the diet mentality

  • Body positivity, fat acceptance, feminism, and social justice

  • Bodily autonomy and making the body political

  • The systemic oppression of fat bodies

  • The impact of fat stigma and fatphobia on health

  • Lindy’s experiences with sex, dating, and love while fat

  • Fighting for body positivity for bodies of all sizes

 

Resources Mentioned:

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Food Psych #96: How to Trust Your Body & Honor Its Wisdom with Tracy Brown

Tracy Brown RD

Fellow Health at Every Size dietitian Tracy Brown shares why she started dieting and fighting her body in adolescence, how restriction quickly spiraled into an eating disorder, why difficulty with setting boundaries played into her relationship with food, how she found her way to recovery and started down the path to becoming a dietitian, how she began to tune in to her body's wisdom and practice intuitive eating, why she dove into practicing from a Health at Every Size paradigm, and lots more. She also leads us in a special meditation for helping reconnect to your body!

Tracy Brown is a somatic nutrition therapist, registered dietitian, and attuned eating coach in private practice providing in-person, phone and online counseling since 2006. Tracy works with people on a soul level because she believes not wanting to be in the body is a way of protecting oneself, so her work is about nourishing the nervous system to feel safe enough to feel emotion and actually heal. She specializes in the treatment of eating disorders and eating problems for both adults and children, as well as issues related to overextending the body, including adrenal fatigue, hormone issues, PCOS and gut health.

Tracy routinely teaches intuitive eating workshops and disordered-eating-related talks throughout Florida, including at the University of Florida and Santa Fe College in Gainesville, FL; Flager College; and Florida Gulf Coast University in Ft Myers. She is also the guest Nutrition Therapist for Feast, an online intuitive eating program run by past Food Psych guest Rachel Cole. Tracy has appeared on many podcasts discussing topics including intuitive eating, trauma healing, positive body image, and recovery.

She believes that healing food and weight concerns is really about deciding to embrace our humanity in the diverse and amazing bodies we have. Living and feeling fully with courage and being dedicated to the fullest expression of who we are is the point. Learn more about Tracy and her work at TracyBrownRD.com.

This episode is brought to you by Plum Deluxe, a Fair Trade tea company that's committed to fostering mindfulness, compassion, and community. 

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We Discuss:

  • Tracy’s relationship with food growing up, including a childhood that included farming and exposure to sports at an early age

  • Tracy’s experience with subliminal messages about “acceptable” body size

  • The emotions attached to the dieting experience

  • How dating and socializing impacted Tracy’s ideas of perfection and her understanding of what is valued in our society

  • Tracy’s first experience with a diet and the resulting spiral into disordered eating, restriction, obsessive exercise, and anorexia

  • How eating disorders can be used to create boundaries around us and isolate us from the world

  • Rape culture and consent in the context of bodily autonomy

  • The relationship between eating disorders and control

  • Tracy’s journey through early eating disorder recovery and her introduction to intuitive eating

  • Tracy’s experience in college studying dietetics and nutrition, including studying with the knowledge that she would be following an anti-diet path once she received her degree

  • The impact of deprivation on the restrict-binge cycle

  • How the diet mentality and mental restriction impact the ability to break the binge cycle

  • Tracy’s trials and tribulations trying to find a job in dietetics, and her eventual first supervision under the guidance of an intuitive eating practitioner

  • Tracy’s experience with self-experimentation in learning her own hunger and fullness

  • The role of therapy in eating disorder recovery and intuitive eating

  • Tracy’s transition into private practice and Health at Every Size work, including her frustration with the diet model in mainstream dietetics

  • The challenge that HAES clinicians face in making space for their client’s mourning process around letting go of weight loss

  • Letting go of the instinct to fix problems rather than feel problems

  • How diet culture and fatphobia impact people of all sizes

  • The role of the HAES, body-positive community in supporting people when they doubt the truth about diet culture

  • How nonlinear the recovery and intuitive eating process can be

  • The judgment and moral values we attach to food behaviors

  • Tracy’s use of somatics and meditation to support eating disorder recovery, body acceptance, and inner wisdom

  • How to prepare clients for the diet culture of the outside world and create boundaries around their own process

  • How meditation can help ground the body, center the self, and foster self-compassion

  • How to have gratitude for coping mechanisms that no longer serve us

 

Resources Mentioned

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Food Psych #95: How to Share Your Anti-Diet Journey with Katie Dalebout

Katie Dalebout

Fellow body-positive podcaster and coach Katie Dalebout joins me to celebrate Food Psych's 4-year anniversary! We discuss how Katie's first appearance in episode 34 changed the direction of the podcast, how her recovery from orthorexia led her toward Health at Every Size and away from her original wellness-focused business, how she discovered her interests and passions beyond food and health, why it's so important to consider potential triggers when telling your recovery story, how to share responsibly on social media, and lots more!

Through her blog, podcasts, videos, and courses, Katie Dalebout curates inspired wisdom that guides people to go deep and sift through the thoughts clouding their minds. She’s a contributor to Hello Giggles, Refinery29, and MindBodyGreen, and in 2013 launched the weekly podcast Let It Out (formerly The Wellness Wonderland), which attracted wellness and lifestyle celebrities such as Gabrielle Bernstein, Tara Stiles, and Joe Cross in its first few episodes. She’s the author of the Amazon best-selling book Let It Out: A Journey Through Journaling (Hay House, 2016). She helps people develop a positive body image by embracing their creativity and personality outside of their physicality, and she’s on a mission to share journaling tools that invoke deeper authenticity and self-awareness. Find her online at KatieDalebout.com.

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We Discuss:

  • The four-year anniversary of Food Psych, including its evolution into a 100% body-positive philosophy, and Katie’s role in defining some of Food Psych’s themes

  • How Katie and Christy became friends through podcasting, as well as the early days of Food Psych

  • Katie’s “coming out” process with her eating disorder

  • Christy’s first exploration of Health at Every Size, including how the eating disorder recovery world and collaborating with Isabel Foxen Duke really brought her into the fold both in her practice and her podcast

  • Katie’s experience listening to Isabel Foxen Duke’s episode of Food Psych, including the vulnerability that the episode brought out in Isabel’s story

  • The importance of exploring our relationships with food growing up, and how this question helps us establish that we are not alone in these food and body struggles

  • The problem with eating disorder memoirs, including balancing storytelling with potentially triggering information

  • The normalization of diet culture

  • How our stages of recovery, understanding of disordered eating, and awareness of triggers evolves over time

  • Katie’s podcast, Let it Out, and the transformation it has undergone with Katie’s own journey through eating disorder recovery

  • Seeking out hobbies apart from food, the body, and wellness

  • How disordered eating can shape our lives and career trajectories

  • Responsibly sharing on social media, including representing a balanced life rather than just the highlights or the “healthy” parts

  • The issue with social media “branding,” including getting stuck in certain food and lifestyle labels

  • How eating styles can become a part of our identity

  • The potentially damaging influence of people we admire in the social media realm

  • The peace that comes from living your life in an intuitive way rather than a diet-mentality way

  • How the diet industry is beginning to co-opt not just wellness and nutrition, but intuitive eating and body positivity

  • Creating boundaries and taking a stand against diet culture

  • The importance of tapping into anger and humor in this social justice movement

  • How the body-positive movement and anti-diet movement fit in the larger socio-cultural context of our current political situation

  • Striking the balance between curating a compassionate social media feed and ensuring that we don’t forget that the HAES, body-positive bubble in which we reside isn't how the rest of the world functions

 

Resources Mentioned

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Food Psych #94: How to Leave the Religion of Dieting with Alan Levinovitz

Alan Levinovitz

Religious scholar and journalist Alan Levinovitz discusses how diet culture is like a religion, why so much modern nutrition advice is dangerous, why we need to think critically about restrictive eating practices, how suspicion of Western medicine can lead people to believe in harmful "miracle cures," why the "nocebo effect" is causing people to unnecessarily demonize particular foods, and lots more.     

Alan Levinovitz received his PhD in religion from the University of Chicago where he specialized in classical Chinese thought. He is now assistant professor of religious studies at James Madison University, where he teaches classes on religion, Chinese philosophy, and the connection between religion and medicine. His journalism focuses on the intersection of religion, science, and culture, and has appeared in The Atlantic, Wired, The Washington Post, Slate, Vox, and elsewhere. He is the author of The Gluten Lie: And Other Myths About What You Eat (mild trigger warning for frank discussion of diets and eating practices). Find him at James Madison University and on Twitter at @AlanLevinovitz.

 

We Discuss:

  • Alan’s enriching and satisfying relationship with food growing up, including his experience with food as an art form

  • Alan’s experience with body image throughout his life, as well as his differing experience in the world due to his male gender identification

  • How ignoring the personal experiences and struggles of people around food and focusing on the logic can make healing one’s relationship with food seem simplistic and easy, even though it is anything but

  • Debunking dieting, and the ways in which the attachment people have to their belief systems around dieting closely resembles the attachment people have to their belief systems around religion

  • The dogma of nutrition and dieting

  • The power of media representation of the body

  • Alan’s journey into religious studies, including his eventual transition into dietary and food studies as a kind of religion

  • The “nocebo effect”… sometimes, if we are told something is going to make us feel bad, it will

  • Some of the restrictive practices of religion, and the intersections of diet culture and religion

  • The decline of religiosity in relation to the ascension of diet culture

  • Eating as ritual

  • How restrictive religious practices can sometimes spark disordered eating and eating disorders

  • The specific practice of Lent, including how some people view Lent as an opportunity to diet

  • The ways in which some of us deceive ourselves in order justify restrictive practices around our food

  • False promises, charismatic hope, and prosperity gospel

  • How the power of the mind can convince us that food is both healing us or hurting us

  • The issue with the ‘holistic’ health movement, including the intense scrutiny against Western and mainstream medicine

  • Self-identity within our food values and dietary practices

  • The seduction and subsequent failure of black and white rules in relation to food, and how to embrace fluidity instead

  • Buddhism as a path to mindfulness, intuitive eating, and eating disorder recovery

  • How important it is to remember that all bodies are individual, and therefore dietary practices that promise to heal and work for everyone should inspire caution

  • The danger in obsessing over productivity, output, and quantifying every aspect of our lives

  • Putting warning labels on diets and exercise tracking devices like FitBits

  • The importance of not pathologizing sadness, bad body image days, and other negative emotions that are just a part of life

 

Resources Mentioned

 

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Food Psych #93: The Truth about Dieting & Health at Every Size with Rebecca Scritchfield & Julie Duffy Dillon

Julie Duffy Dillon - Rebecca Scritchfield - Food Psych

Fellow body-positive RDs Rebecca Scritchfield and Julie Duffy Dillon return for a special episode in honor of NEDA Week and National Nutrition Month! We discuss our new joint campaign #ChangeTheGame, why the nutrition field often plays right into diet culture, why we need to stop prescribing one thing to people with diagnosed eating disorders and another thing to the rest of the population, how dieting messes with your mind, and lots more!

Julie Duffy Dillon is a food behavior expert who helps people enjoy eating again. Award winning with her progressive approach, Julie was featured in TLC’s documentary My Big Fat Fabulous Life. Julie has an active blog on JulieDillonRD.com and a weekly Food Peace Newsletter. Listen to her weekly body positive, diet free, and health promoting podcast Love, Food where she answers listener letters about their complicated relationship with food. Julie received her BS in Nutrition from Ohio University and MS in Mental Health Counseling from The University of North Carolina at Greensboro. As a registered and licensed dietitian in North Carolina, she founded BirdHouse Nutrition Therapy a group practice passionate about helping individuals and families recover from eating disorders and PCOS. As a Certified Eating Disorder Specialist (CEDRD), she also supervises dietitians to be eating disorder specialists. Don't miss Julie's previous appearance on Food Psych!  

Rebecca Scritchfield is a well-being coach, registered dietitian nutritionist, certified health and fitness specialist and author of the book, Body Kindness, which Publisher’s Weekly calls “a rousing guide to better health.” Through her weight-neutral mindfulness-based counseling practice, she helps people create a better life with workable goals that fit individual interests. She is the co-founder of Dietitians for Body Confidence, a website and free bi-monthly e-mail dedicated to shared learning among dietitians and future RDNs to improve body image in people they serve. Rebecca has influenced millions through her writing, Body Kindness Podcast, and appearances in over 100 media outlets including NBC Nightly News, CNN, the Today show, the Washington Post, O Magazine, Health, Shape, and many others. She lives in Washington, D.C., where she was recently recognized as one of ten “Supermom” entrepreneurs in the Nation’s Capital. Find her online at RebeccaScritchfield.com, and don't miss her previous episode of Food Psych!

How are you changing the game on diet culture? Share your anti-diet victories with us using the hashtag #ChangeTheGame on your favorite social media platform!  

Join the new Food Psych Facebook group to connect with fellow listeners around the world!

 

We Discuss:

  • How Rebecca came up with #ChangetheGame, including the realization that dieting is a game, and that we can change the game by refusing to play

  • The resources that are “game changers,” such as Health at Every Size by Linda Bacon or Intuitive Eating by Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch

  • How diet culture permeates our lives, and the ways in which diets can directly lead to eating disorder development

  • The biological and psychological impacts of dieting and restriction

  • The seduction of diets, including the fantasy of the life weight loss will bring you

  • How diets set us up to “fail,” and are made to keep us trapped in never-ending weight cycling

  • The consumer culture of dieting, including the way marketing and advertisements target insecurity to sell products

  • Fear mongering around food

  • The role nutritionists and dietitians have in healing the world’s relationship with food

  • Pleasure and food, including the need for pleasure in nutrition and the inevitable result of balance and variety when we approach food with pleasure and compassion

  • National Nutrition Month, including the subtle diet message embedded within this year’s campaign

  • How the diet industry no longer wants to be associated with restriction but rather with health, and how the nutrition industry is implicitly associated with diets

  • How to change a dietitian’s approach to getting people to eat a more balanced diet

  • The importance of interpreting health data in the context of food insecurity, economic inequality, diet history, and social stigma

  • The all-or-nothing, orthorexic-type nutrition information currently being touted by nutritionists and the media alike, and how to combat it with a more flexible approach

  • The need for an intuitive eating, HAES, size-inclusive shift in the dietetics profession, and for the disordered eating within the profession to be addressed

  • The issue of sizeism in the nutrition world, specifically in dietetics education, and the need for more size diversity

  • Weight concerns and the need to shift away from weight-focused wellness to a self-care driven model

  • Letting go of trying to control our bodies, and letting go of diet culture altogether in order to find true happiness

  • Action items for #ChangeTheGame and dismantling diet culture

 

Resources Mentioned:

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Food Psych #88: Why "the Perfect Body" Won't Make You Happy with Sarah Vance

Sarah Vance - Body Image Coach

Body image coach and registered nurse Sarah Vance shares how competitive bodybuilding triggered a disordered relationship with food and fitness, why getting praise for her looks and "healthy lifestyle" only led to unhappiness and pain, how she finally made peace with food and her body, why she now takes a Health at Every Size approach in her nursing practice, why body positivity is really a social justice movement, and lots more!

Sarah is a body image coach, host of the Reclaiming You Podcast, and founder of the Breaking Boundaries program. Through her writing, speaking, or personalized one on one coaching - she helps women all over the world ditch the diet mentality, body-hate, perfection, and self doubt while helping them cultivate a positive body image, self-love, and confidence to show up in the world as their most authentic self while knowing that who they are is enough. Find her online at SarahVance.com, and grab your free taste of freedom HERE.

 

We Discuss:

  • Sarah’s relationship with food growing up, including her experience as the child of two parents that were involved in bodybuilding competitions

  • The impact of body shaming and fat-phobia in our culture, and how those kinds of ideas can quickly permeate our homes and impact our relationship to our bodies at a young age

  • Sarah’s experience as a nurse, including the ways the medical model contributed to her fat-phobic and anti-Health at Every Size education

  • Sarah’s downward spiral into obsessive exercise and a disordered relationship with food and her body

  • Perfectionistic tendencies and the double-edged sword of praise and weight loss

  • The difficulty of letting go of the “healthy” identity when we finally find healing and recover from obsessive relationships with food

  • Sarah’s rock bottom in the “wellness” industry and her transition into a more self-care oriented health approach

  • The ways in which Sarah’s experience as a nurse made her confront her own mortality and consider the ways in which she was impacting the world with her work

  • How Sarah reconnected to her personal fulfillment, pleasure, and core values when she finally gave up dieting

  • How the way we relate to food, either disordered or intuitive, can spill over into other areas of our lives

  • The value in sitting with thoughts rather than acting on them

  • The idea of taking up space and expanding comfort zones

  • How healing your relationship with food and your body can open up the door for gentle, enjoyable movement

  • The way in which our relationship to food is often not about food at all, but about our individual fears

  • Body size, fat phobia, and diet culture as a social justice issue

  • The importance of empathy in the social justice conversation

  • Putting our own recovery first before helping others

  • The shame that we often carry with our stories, the courage required to share, and the relief and support we feel when we finally release it

  • How important it is to stand in our truth and authenticity, especially in the world of cultivated social media

  • The holistic transformation we see when we let go of the diet mentality and societal standards and embrace intuitive eating

 

Resources Mentioned

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Food Psych #87: How to Trust Your Intuition about Food with Daxle Collier

Daxle Collier - Intuitive Eating Coach

Intuitive eating coach Daxle Collier shares how food insecurity affected her relationship with food, how a series of health problems led her down the path of restrictive dieting, how she got back in touch with her intuition, why perfectionism around food is so destructive, and lots more.

Daxle Collier is an intuitive eating coach who helps people heal their relationship with food and create an authentic self-care practice. She offers remote coaching, online courses, and local San Francisco Bay Area workshops.

Daxle blogs about intuitive eating, mindful eating, self-care, joyful movement, stress reduction, and the process of change. Her work is rooted in mindfulness, self-compassion, and the HAES principles.

She holds a masters in health education with specialization in nutrition from John F. Kennedy University, and has also completed Intuitive Eating Counselor Certification, Training and Supervision with Evelyn Tribole and Coach Training with Linda Bark of Wisdom of the Whole Coaching Academy. Find her online at DaxleCollier.com, and follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

 

We Discuss:

  • Daxle’s relationship with food growing up, which included having a mother who was a chronic dieter, an early intuitive relationship with food despite surrounding influences, and an eventual tumultuous relationship with food that began in her teenage years

  • How Daxle used food and exercise to rebel and to fit in with her friends at school

  • Daxle’s experience with food when she transitioned to college, including exploring vegetarianism and trying to learn how to cook and buy groceries for herself with limited means

  • Medical issues that cropped up for Daxle, which created a complicated relationship with Western medicine and eventually influenced her to explore alternative and holistic health

  • Daxle’s education in “functional nutrition,” including experimenting with the Paleo diet and eventually realizing that this diet was worsening her health

  • The ways in which American culture encourages suffering around our health

  • The danger of experimenting on ourselves with nutrition, and how easy it is to convince ourselves that certain food choices are the “magic bullet” to health, even when we are experiencing the opposite

  • Daxle’s journey to intuitive eating, including her experience doing the counselor training with Evelyn Tribole

  • How being in the Health at Every Size bubble can make us forget that intuitive eating and HAES aren’t the norm in the medical community and our culture as a whole

  • The ways in which learning about mindfulness, self-compassion, and intuition outside of our relationships to food can open us up to the world of intuitive eating

  • How important it is to break down our ideas and assumptions about foods in relation to the diet mentality before we jump into intuitive eating so that we can experience foods in an untainted, non-diet-centric way

  • Daxle’s job as a wellness coach, which does not include telling people what to eat

  • Why intuitive eating is not the “hunger and fullness” diet

  • How to not turn self-care into self-punishment

  • Daxle’s experience with peer support and how her classmates helped facilitate her journey through intuitive eating

  • Daxle’s emergence into the professional world as a health coach, including how she started her own business, and how difficult it can be to market in a world dominated by diet culture

  • The struggles of intuitive eating and letting go of weight loss in our fat-phobic, health-centric society

  • The problem with encouraging the idea that individual health is a personal responsibility, rather than considering the influences and social-justice issues that impact individual health

  • Daxle’s current relationship with food and her body, including the peace she’s found and the social media cleansing she has had to do

  • The question of body love versus body acceptance, especially in the face of chronic pain or disability, and choosing body trust over body hate

  • The systemic issues that create health problems

  • Daxle’s dream of intuitive eating and HAES eventually being the norm rather than progressive


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Food Psych #85: How to Escape Diet Prison with Anne-Sophie Reinhardt

Anne-Sophie Reinhardt - Escape Diet Prison

Anti-diet coach Anne-Sophie Reinhardt shares why she turned to food for comfort in childhood, how she quickly spiraled from dieting to an eating disorder in adolescence, why "willpower" isn't actually a good thing, how she discovered the body-postive movement and healed her relationship with food, why trauma is such a trigger for disordered eating behaviors, and lots more. 

Anne-Sophie Reinhardt is an anti-diet coach and body confidence expert who wants you to know one thing: your weight does NOT determine your worth. A firm believer that you don’t (and shouldn’t) have to wait to start living because of your weight, Anne-Sophie works with women around the globe to help them escape diet prison and make eating fun again (because life is a lot more delicious when food doesn’t rule your life). 

Now a Certified Eating Psychology Coach and Martha Beck Life Coach, Anne-Sophie struggled with disordered eating, yo-yo dieting and bingeing and purging for over 14 years. After a serious health scare, Anne-Sophie entered recovery and launched her own recovery-focused blog, later named one of the Best 25 Personal Growth Blogs 2015 by the Institute for the Psychology of Eating. Since then, she’s helped countless clients write new rules around food, self love, body image and life in general and has shared her revolutionary anti-diet message in top publications like She Takes on the World, Tiny Buddha and Huffington Post.

And when Anne-Sophie’s not helping clients fall madly in love with their own bodies (and lives) you’ll likely find her enjoying her own by devouring a delicious book, swimming with adorable her son, savoring a massive ice cream cone (sans guilt) or (most likely) catching up on old episodes of Grey’s Anatomy. Join her Escape Diet Prison Tribe and her free Facebook group.

 

We Discuss:

  • The ways in which diets are now marketed as “lifestyle changes,” which makes it that much harder to be aware of the diet mentality and to not get sucked back into diet culture

  • Anne-Sophie’s relationship to food growing up, including the feeling of unease around food from a young age and the ways in which she used food to feel in control of and cope with an abusive experience

  • The ways in which trauma can trigger eating disorders and disordered eating behaviors as a way to cope with difficult circumstances

  • The impact of Trump's abusive rhetoric towards women, and how triggering his words and sentiments can be to survivors of abuse

  • Anne-Sophie’s experience with feeling shame over the size of her body, and how that shame led to excessive exercise and food restriction

  • How positive reinforcement of extreme weight loss, especially by encouraging the concept of “willpower,” can push disordered eating into eating disorder territory

  • Anne-Sophie’s experience with anorexia, including her abandonment of all creative pursuits and hobbies in favor of an obsessive relationship with food and her body

  • Her first steps to find healing and recovery from her eating disorder, including her experience with therapy and in-patient treatment

  • The deep need for more education about eating disorders within the medical and clinical communities, including the life-threatening element of eating disorders and the understanding that eating disorders are severe in all cases whether or not they physically present as such

  • Why many families are in denial about the signs of an eating disorder, and why it's important to encourage the family not to dismiss these red-flag moments

  • Anne-Sophie’s first exposure to self-care in her recovery journey, and why it was essential to learn to value her body for things other than weight

  • Her experience with intensive therapy, and how it encouraged her to find her self-worth and explore the emotional components of her eating-disorder behaviors

  • The ways in which recovery opens us back up to our lives, including our creativity and valuable relationships

  • The importance of baby steps in recovery, and the reality that recovery is a struggle

  • Anne-Sophie’s use of gratitude and journaling to bolster her recovery

  • Anne-Sophie’s experience getting pregnant, the challenges that came along with that weight gain, and the ultimately fulfilling experience of having a body healthy enough to create a life

  • The important development of body trust in eating disorder recovery to support intuitive eating

  • How watching a child’s relationship with food and movement, which is filled with ease, can have a profound impact on how we view our own relationships to food and movement

  • Anne-Sophie’s transition to being an anti-diet coach, including how she began with blogging and podcasting her journey and then eventually made her way her way getting her certifications in coaching

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Food Psych #83: The Truth About Elimination Diets and Orthorexia with Emily Fonnesbeck

Emily Fonnesbeck - Anti-Diet Dietitian

Body-positive dietitian Emily Fonnesbeck shares how her family helped her develop a healthy relationship with food in childhood, why that went awry and led her down the path to orthorexia, how she overcame her disordered eating and discovered Health at Every Size, why she thinks elimination diets and food-sensitivity testing are dangerous for most people, and lots more.

Emily Fonnesbeck is a Registered Dietitian and owns her own private practice in southern Utah. Her nutrition passion consists of helping individuals free themselves from diets, food anxiety, poor body image and obsessive exercise. She has a non-diet, weight-neutral, client-centered approach to help people make peace with food and their bodies. Find her online at EmilyFonnesbeck.com.

 

We Discuss:

  • The increase in oppressive diet culture, healthism, and orthorexic tendencies that are bound to crop up over the next few holiday months

  • Emily’s relationship to food growing up, including a positive and non-restrictive home environment

  • The ways in which Emily’s post-pregnancy experience and introduction to the world of motherhood impacted her body image and led her to excessive exercise and food restriction

  • The ways in which huge life changes stress the body, and how taking control of our eating is a way in which we try to cope

  • How Emily entered the nutrition field, and the ways in which a nutrition education can often feed into orthorexic behaviors

  • Emily’s physical repercussions of undereating and overexercising, which at the time seemed to indicate a failure to adhere to the perfection of “clean” eating, but was really her body giving her warning signs that something was wrong

  • Emily’s experience with the LEAP Program (a program that promotes elimination diets based off of food sensitivity testing), becoming a LEAP Certified Nutritionist, and the ways in which her involvement in that program encouraged her orthorexic behavior

  • Emily’s experience with orthorexia, and how it became an obsessive condition that felt out of her control

  • How often becoming a dietitian is sparked by diet culture and a desire to fix oneself, and as a result when many nutritionists begin practicing they perpetuate disordered eating

  • The ways in which Emily’s orthorexia impacted her relationship with her family, especially her husband’s role in her eating disorder recovery

  • Emily’s experience with therapy and recovery, which helped her tackle her perfectionism and anxiety, taught her how to set boundaries, and asserted that she was enough just as she was

  • The book Intuitive Eating, how instrumental it was in Emily’s recovery, and how it led her to HAES

  • Emily’s time working at a weight loss resort, and how it impacted her own journey as a dietitian and eventual transition to a weight-neutral approach

  • The important process of owning your story and all parts of your journey, including the ugly parts

  • The power of community and surrounding yourself with people who get HAES, body positivity, and anti-diet, weight neutral eating disorder recovery

  • How intuitive eating impacts every part of our lives and supports self-care and self-growth

  • Emily’s integration of HAES into her practice, and the challenge of reassuring clients who are stuck in the diet mentality that HAES and intuitive eating works

  • The importance of removing cultural diet triggers and creating an environment that is conducive to achieving peace with food

 

Resources Mentioned

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Food Psych #80: The Truth About "Food Addiction" with Marci Evans

Marci Evans - Food Addiction & Eating Disorders Dietitian

Fellow anti-diet dietitian Marci Evans shares why some people feel "addicted" to food, what the science actually says about so-called food addiction, how intuitive eating and Health at Every Size can help you recover from disordered eating behaviors, why it's so important that eating-disorder specialists NOT also try to sell weight loss, and lots more. 

Marci Anderson Evans MS, CEDRD, cPT is a Certified Eating Disorder Registered Dietitian, ACSM Certified Personal Trainer, certified Intuitive Eating Coach, and owner of Marci RD Nutrition Consulting.

“Food is meant to be pleasurable. We are meant to enjoy it.” [Click to Tweet]

By combining her passion for food, nutrition, and fitness her goal is to take help each of her clients find a healthy and happy relationship with food and exercise. She works exclusively with clients with eating disorders, disordered eating, or those interested in intuitive eating counseling.

Marci has two professional passions. The first is empowering individuals to find a healthy relationship with food, exercise, and their bodies. The second is teaching and supervising dietitians on how to effectively counsel people with eating disorders. Marci finds great satisfaction in utilizing a psychologically informed approach to counseling and feels grateful for a career that helps her to learn and grow every day. 

Find Marci online at MarciRD.com, and learn more about her online training for dietitians

 

“Eating disorder recovery has to go hand-in-hand with Health at Every Size, body positivity, and intuitive eating.” [Click to Tweet]

We Discuss:

  • Marci’s relationship with food growing up, including funny food quirks, her natural inner wisdom relating to food, and the pleasure factor with food

  • Marci’s introduction to dance, food shame, and a preoccupation with “healthy eating”

  • The arc of Marci’s relationship with food as she grew older, including panic over weight gain during puberty, induction into diet culture during her teenage years, and the eventual bingeing of her college years

  • Marci’s reaction to her weight gain, including shame, and how the unconditional kindness and body-acceptance of others helped her to heal

  • Marci’s experience in her nutrition education, which luckily encouraged balance and moderation, and her eventual introduction to Intuitive Eating through an eating disorder treatment center

  • How long eating disorder recovery truly takes

  • The impact that culture has on our relationship to food and our body, and the importance of not including weight management in eating disorder recovery

  • Marci’s immersion into the books and resources surrounding HAES, body positivity, rejecting diet culture, and intuitive eating

  • How intuitive eating and body positivity are often co-opted by the diet industry for marketing purposes, and how navigating the HAES philosophy can be very difficult for private practitioners and clients who are so used to the diet mentality

  • How important it is for dietitians and nutritionists teaching HAES to do their own intuitive eating work, especially as it relates to rejecting the goal of weight loss

  • The ways in which we can self-select the media and conversations we engage in to better ensure that we are surrounded by body-positive messages

  • How intuitive eating seeps into all areas of our lives, including personal relationships

  • Dealing with the health media as a HAES dietitian

  • The complicated topic of “food addiction,” including interpreting food addiction from the perspective of HAES and intuitive eating, interpreting the research in the context of our cultural food beliefs and history, and validating those who feel addicted to food while simultaneously guiding them away from disempowerment

  • The importance of giving people intuitive eating tools before they try legalizing all foods without the proper support

  • How to have realistic expectations for ourselves in eating disorder recovery and intuitive eating practice

 

Resources Mentioned

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Food Psych #79: Intuitive Eating & the Satisfaction Factor with Elyse Resch

Elyse Resch - Intuitive Eating Workbook

Intuitive Eating co-author Elyse Resch shares her history of emotional eating as a child, how going on a diet in her 20s triggered an eating disorder, why studying nutrition science and becoming a dietitian helped her recover, how she got the idea to write an anti-diet book, why satisfaction is so central to intuitive eating, how to raise kids as intuitive eaters, and lots more!  

Elyse Resch, MS, RDN, CEDRD has been in private practice in Beverly Hills as a Nutrition Therapist for 34 years, specializing in eating disorders, Intuitive Eating, and preventative nutrition. She is the co-author of Intuitive Eating (St. Martin's Press, 1995, 1996, 2003, third edition--2012), and is the co-author of Intuitive Eating, audio version, 2009 (Sounds True). She has published journal articles and does regular speaking engagements and extensive press, radio, and internet interviews. She is nationally known for her work in helping patients break free from the diet mentality through the Intuitive Eating process.

Elyse's philosophy embraces the goal of reconnecting with your internal wisdom about eating.  This is the wisdom with which you were born but from which you have become distracted. A reconnection with your intuitive wisdom will help you develop a healthy and satisfying relationship with food and your body. Elyse’s work has been profiled on CNN, KABC, NBC, AP Press, and KTTV television. She is a certified child and adolescent obesity expert, a Certified Eating Disorder Registered Dietitian, and a Fellow of the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals. She was also the treatment team nutritionist on the Eating Disorder Unit at Beverly Hills Medical Center. Find her online at ElyseResch.com, and pre-order her Intuitive Eating Workbook.

 

We Discuss:

  • Reflections on the election, and validating any and all of our difficult, confusing feelings

  • Elyse’s relationship with food growing up, including a generally neutral relationship to food as a child that eventually developed into an eating disorder due to outside influences from peers and loved ones later in life

  • Elyse’s experience in graduate school and how it helped her in her eating disorder recovery

  • How Elyse’s clients’ experiences with weight regain and her exploration of food and psychology prompted a shift to explore weight-neutral nutrition and Health at Every Size (HAES)

  • Christy and Elyse’s reflections on being a part of diet culture at one time in their careers, and how to help nutritionists and dietitians embrace HAES and intuitive eating and let go of the diet mentality

  • Elyse’s approach to advocating for ourselves in the doctor’s office to ensure a non-triggering visit for those in eating disorder recovery

  • The book Intuitive Eating and the concepts of rejecting the diet mentality, understanding diet culture, and letting go of the dream of weight loss

  • Elyse’s experience being an intuitive eating nutritionist in Hollywood, where image is so important and clients are often urged to be underweight

  • How removing magazines and other forms of body-focused media is an important step in removing eating disorder and negative body-image triggers

  • Elyse’s supervision work with counselors training for the Intuitive Eating Certification, including confronting weight bias and diet mentality among professionals

  • Radical acceptance and self-compassion in eating disorder recovery

  • The importance of confronting our own mental health struggles when we decide to enter a field such as counseling that requires us to delve into the mental health of others

  • Raising children as intuitive eaters, including empowering children in their own autonomy and engendering trust to promote food intuition

  • The gray area that is intuitive eating, including the importance of intention rather than perfection

  • Elyse’s evolving relationship with perfectionism, which eventually led to the idea that falling back into diet behavior is never “wrong,” but rather an opportunity to learn and grow

  • The pros and cons of social media, including the issue of comparison and promoting only the best moments of our lives, as well as changing your feed to remove triggering material

  • The new Intuitive Eating Workbook, including how important exercises can be to such a theoretical practice

  • How important satisfaction is in the eating experience, and how we can think about satisfaction as a gentle way into intuitive eating

 

Resources Mentioned

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Food Psych #77: How to Handle Weight Stigma & Body Shame in the Family with Joanne Soolman

Joanne Levy Soolman - Health at Every Size Dietitian

Fellow Health at Every Size dietitian Joanne Soolman shares how weight stigma manifested in her family, how she overcame body shame and discovered Health at Every Size, how she handles having a sister who's a prominent Weight Watchers leader, and lots more!

Joanne Levy Soolman, MS, RD, LDN, is a registered dietitian and co-owner of Soolman Nutrition and Wellness, LLC located in Wellesley, MA. She and her husband Jonah, who is also a registered dietitian, provide outpatient nutrition counseling services for those in southeastern New England. Joanne got her BA in Psychology from Brown University and her MS in Nutrition and Health Promotion from Simmons College. Joanne specializes in nutrition counseling for individuals struggling with eating disorders and disordered eating. In addition to being a professional member of the Multiservice Eating Disorder Association, she is a proud member of the Association for Size Diversity and Health, promoting the principles of Health at Every Size®. Find her on her website at SoolmanNutrition.com.

 

We Discuss:

  • Joanne’s relationship with food growing up, including being taught the association of eating “too much” food with being fat, and discussions with her family regarding the thin ideal

  • How Joanne’s experiences at the doctor’s office as a young child fed into the obesity hysteria and a heavy focus on weight and food intake

  • The issues within the current medical model of weight regulation

  • Joanne’s first experience with a diet, including Slim Fast and beginning Jenny Craig during puberty, as well as Joanne’s first experience with disordered eating and restrictions and how the positive attention fed into the disordered patterns

  • The feeling of “failure” in relation to weight gain

  • Joanne’s journey to Health at Every Size 

  • How having a supportive partner can make such a difference in intuitive eating and body positivity

  • The difficulties doing body image work

  • The ways in which Joanne has navigated having a family member heavily involved in the pro-diet industry

  • How to let go of the weight-loss goal as a nutrition professional

  • The challenge of being involved with a family that subscribes to the diet mentality and the thin ideal while being a HAES dietitian

  • The future of the diet industry, and whether we will see a pro-HAES world soon

  • The pros and cons of HAES and body-positive activism, including internet trolls and fat phobia, as well as surprising acts of kindness

 

Resources Mentioned

 

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Food Psych #75: How to Build a Body-Positive Business Without Selling Weight Loss with Melissa Toler

Melissa Toler - Ditching Diet Culture & Building a Body-Positive Business

Fellow anti-diet health and wellness coach Melissa Toler shares how she began dieting and fighting against her body, what led her to give up the fight and embrace body positivity, why she no longer sells weight loss (and what that means for her business), and lots more!

Melissa Toler is non-diet, weight-neutral health and wellness coach, speaker, and writer. Her goal is to help women connect the dots between our culture's ridiculous beauty standards and our personal struggle with self-acceptance. She helps women unlearn the toxic messages and behaviors from lifelong dieting so they can learn a new set of skills. Melissa uses her background as a pharmacist, a certified health & wellness coach, and her 25-year history with dieting in her work.

Melissa gave up the weight loss quest years ago and it was one of the best decisions she's ever made. Find her online at MelissaToler.com, and check out the blog post we discussed, "Why I Stopped Selling Weight Loss." 

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Food Psych #74: The Truth About Emotional Eating with Isabel Foxen Duke

Isabel Foxen Duke - Emotional Eating - Stop Fighting Food

Isabel Foxen Duke returns! We discuss the #1 reason why people engage in emotional eating and bingeing, why reclaiming your right to eat emotionally might be a key to healing your relationship with food, why recommendations for weight loss are scientifically unsound, how the effort to control our food can transfer to other areas of life after eating disorder recovery, why meditation and spiritual practice is lifelong work, and lots more!

Isabel Foxen Duke helps women stop fighting food. After struggling with binge-eating for most of her life, and trying to overcome emotional eating and binge-eating through various approaches to food—Isabel finally discovered that these attempts to control her food and her body, were at the root of the problem itself. She now teaches women struggling with binge-eating how to do the very thing they're most afraid of, and the very thing they need to do to recover: let go. Grab her free video training series, Stop Fighting Food, to learn more about her work.

 

We Discuss:

  • Why the concept of “emotional eating” is misleading, and why we really need to be focusing on diet culture instead

  • How moralizing food feeds into the diet mentality

  • The differences between binge eating and emotional eating

  • The role of fatphobia in food policing

  • Why we need to include body autonomy in our body positivity

  • How to shift making our choices from a place of self-control to making our choices from a place of self-care

  • Recognizing binge eating as a response to deprivation

  • Why deprivation isn’t always about the amount of food being eaten

  • An explanation of the “Last Supper Mentality,” and why it contributes to binge eating

  • The pervasive nature of diet culture, and why letting go of the diet mentality is so difficult in this diet culture

  • How we can reclaim the term “emotional eating,” and the importance of regarding it as a neutral coping strategy rather than moralizing it

  • The current research and theories on why we turn to food as a coping mechanism

  • Why “food addiction” and “emotional eating” wouldn’t exist without dieting

  • The value in giving up control for overall mental health

  • The ways in which food control has become the new religion

  • How obsession can transfer to different areas of our life, and why surrendering to the chaos and engaging in the spiritual process is continuous work

  • The power of saying no and setting your boundaries, and how our work around food bleeds into other aspects of our lives

  • The role of radical acceptance in recovery from disordered eating

  • The problem with the “Self-Compassion Diet” and the “Love-Yourself-Skinny Diet”

  • Why the desire to lose weight isn’t a problem, but the promise of weight loss is

  • How unethical promising weight loss is, and the need for evidence-based medicine in the health field

  • Isabel’s personal experience in in-patient recovery, and the multiple stages of recovery

  • Why body image work, body positivity, and body acceptance are essential to healing from eating disorders and chronic dieting

  • The truth that shame isn’t motivating, and the healing that can be found when we let go of body shame

  • How important it is to surround yourself with body-positive culture in the healing process

  • The different levels of body-image work

  • Refinery29’s new 67% Project, and why representation of plus-size women in mainstream media is profoundly important

 

Resources Mentioned

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