My summer interns are all gone, and I’m finally back in the grove of life without them :( miss you guys!!! And this means I’m also back to writing my own blogs :)!!! Today we are diving into sneaky wellness culture and how a focus on healthy eating may not actually be that healthy for us.
Let’s face it; it can be extremely overwhelming to figure out what to eat when everything you read has different messages about food, nutrition, and health.
There is always some new article or blog about what you “should and shouldn’t” put in your mouth, the health trend of the week, the trendy super food, and the newest list of demonized foods that are going to cause “x or y” to happen to you. It’s pretty overwhelming if you ask me.
If I didn’t have a strong backbone in evidenced based nutrition and intuitive eating, I think I would be completely lost when it comes to how to feed myself. So it completely makes sense if you are confused! Or if you find that you are obsessed with how to be as healthy and eat as healthy as possible but don’t even know what that means anymore. It also makes sense that there is a rise in what has been termed “orthorexia” or “an unhealthy obsession with healthy eating.”
Some background on the current state of diet culture:
Diet culture is all around us, but in the past 10 or so years it has been called out and more and more people are aware that “diet’s don’t work.” Because of this awareness, diets aren’t selling like they used to. So instead they are morphing and changing into what has been dubbed Wellness culture. People don’t want a quick fix cabbage soup diet anymore but they are completely obsessed with what new supplements they should be taking to “fight off inflammation” or what foods they should be avoiding to “live longer!” (I see you poor dairy and gluten – who haven’t done harm to anyone except those with lactose intolerance/dairy allergy or celiac disease)
I want to take a minute to point out that if you feel like you fit the above obsession, it is NOT your fault. Wellness culture has done a really good job at praying on your vulnerabilities and convincing you with lots of pseudoscience and exaggerated headlines that you aren’t a “good person” if you aren’t trying the newest trend.
So what’s the problem with wanting to live your best life?
Well the issue is obsessing about health tends to create more problems and leave you feeling anything but your best!!
General well being is much more than just the food we put in our bodies. Overall health is affected by a myriad of different factors including stress, sleep, nutrition, activity, and social connectedness. Food and nutrition is one small piece of the overall health pie. It’s effect on health is often over exaggerated, and we tend to focus on food with the exclusion of the other areas.
When focusing on food goes too far several negative effects can start to bubble up. It may start small like feeling some general anxiety about food choices, thinking about food and health more often and limiting food choices, but this can spiral into bigger issues like preoccupation with food, limited social engagement, nutritional deficiencies and eating disorders.
You don’t have to drink green juice, take lots of supplements and eat smoothie bowls all day to be healthy! (and I’m not saying there is anything wrong with these foods if you do like them and they are one way that you get your nutritional needs met) Instead of hyper focusing on individual nutrients and avoiding or cutting out foods, you can come a long way to making peace with food by looking at the whole picture, including a variety of food and remembering that nutrition is just one piece of the health pie!
If you feel like you could benefit from some additional support unpacking wellness and diet culture and making peace with food make an appointment today!
And follow me over on Insta for more food peace and body love.
Peace, Love, Nom-Nomaste!!