The Life Thief
Diet culture steals your joy, your spark, and your life, which is why I call it The Life Thief.
Diet culture is a system of beliefs that...
...Worships thinness and equates it to health and moral virtue, which means you can spend your whole life thinking you’re irreparably broken just because you don’t look like the impossibly thin “ideal.”
...Promotes weight loss as a means of attaining higher status, which means you feel compelled to spend a massive amount of time, energy, and money trying to shrink your body, even though the research is very clear that intentional weight loss fails more than 95% of the time.
...Demonizes certain ways of eating while elevating others, which means you’re forced to be hyper-vigilant about your eating, ashamed of making certain food choices, and distracted from your pleasure, your purpose, and your power.
Diet culture has stolen our well-being.
It's time for us to take it back.
My work is devoted to stopping The Life Thief and helping you reclaim your life.
Here are some of my favorite resources for learning to recognize The Life Thief's patterns and fight back:
The Life Thief: How diet culture steals your time, your energy, and your health—and how you can take them back
When you’re governed by diet culture’s rules, your life suffers. It's not your fault—it's a systemic problem, a cultural problem, and it affects all of us. But you have the power to take your life back. Check out this blog post to learn how.
Listen to this episode of Food Psych to hear cultural historian Emily Contois discuss the history of diet culture, how political power increased the pressure on women and femmes to restrict their eating, why we need an intersectional approach to healthcare and food access, the religious undertones to our food behavior, gender roles in food, and so much more.
The Wellness Diet is my term for the sneaky, modern guise of diet culture that’s supposedly about “wellness” but is actually about performing a rarefied, perfectionistic, discriminatory idea of what health is supposed to look like. Read this post to learn how to spot this sneaky diet.
Check out this episode of Food Psych to hear author Lindy West share 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, and lots more.
Tune in to hear writer and activist Ijeoma Oluo share why she gave up the pursuit of weight loss even though she had "succeeded" at dieting, how she stepped away from the scale and made peace with her size, why worrying about your weight robs you of your life, why we need to stop obsessing about our bodies, how food insecurity affects people's relationships with food, and lots more.
Listen to this episode of Food Psych to hear religious scholar and journalist Alan Levinovitz discuss 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, and lots more.
The diet mentality is the internalized form of diet culture; it's the way diet culture shows up on the individual level. Check out this blog post to learn how to recognize some of the subtler manifestations of the diet mentality, and how to keep them from interfering in your relationship with food and your body.
When you're spending all your free time planning meals that are allowed on the diet or "lifestyle change" du jour, exercising to try to change your size and shape, constantly cataloguing everything you believe is “wrong” with your body, and comparing yourself to everyone you see, you don’t have the mental space to devote to the things that really matter to you. Life beyond dieting is different.
Ready to reclaim your life from The Life Thief once and for all?
If you want to take back your life alongside an incredible community of people who are on the same path, join my online course so that you can learn how to give up dieting for good.
You deserve to be fully present in your life, and to not have a single moment more stolen by The Life Thief. Your life is YOURS.