Food!!!!!!

Okay, we are going to be bold and brazen! We are going to use the F word a lot today! And for once I don’t mean fat! I am talking about food! Love it or hate it, enjoy it, or run screaming from it, we NEED it to live. So it’s about time we actually talked about it.

In a society so “health obsessed” and fascinated with calorie counting and high fructose corn syrup, it’s become oddly taboo to actually talk about food. Sure, we might occasionally pass on a recipe here an there, and of course everyone feels like they are in the clear to talk about the food that fat people eat, but when was the last time we really had a conversation about food that wasn’t filled with fear? So let’s do it, we are just gonna’ put it all out there!

Stage one of this discussion is setting the ground work. There is no such thing as “good food” and “bad food”.  Celery is not flouncing around in a cape like a superhero and I assure you that chocolate cake is not diabolically planning to take over your thighs! We need to stop associating food with moral characteristics. I have never eaten an evil piece of cheesecake. When we make foods “good” or “bad” we associate those same characteristics with the people who eat those foods. You become good or bad based on what you have eaten. Which then contributes to guilt, self loathing, and fat shaming. So food is food, not  a sentient being, it just is, it is not good or bad, wrong or right.

Stage two! Food is personal! Some foods regardless of your size may hold sentimental value for you, and that’s okay and normal. For example, my dad used to make banana pudding for me on my birthday. It was a big deal and a sacrifice for him since he had diabetes and couldn’t eat, but he knew I loved it. My dad has been gone for ten years now, and I get a little teary eyed every time I eat banana pudding.  For many people, cultural foods, family recipes, or even just a good pizza you had one time in Chicago provides us with comfort or provides us with a strong sensory memory of a wonderful time in our lives.

Stage 3, YOU NEED FOOD TO LIVE! And even more interesting, we each need different amounts of food to live, and different kinds of foods to live. Based on your height, genetics, and weight, the amount of food that you need to maintain your healthy weight varies extremely from person to person. At different times in your life you might need different kinds of foods which provide your body with different nutrients, and your body knows what those things are. A perfect example: I’m a vegetarian and I don’t crave meat very often, I am also a woman, once a month like clock work I crave red meat like nothing else. I could knock over a butcher for a good burger. This is because my body is sending me a message that as my iron levels drop during menstruation  that I need to replenish, and red meat is a great source of iron. Although, I prefer spinach or broccoli.

Stage 4…Summary Time!! Food is the fuel that get’s us through this life. When your car requires fuel, you don’t yell at it “Oh you stupid car, if only you had more will power!!!! ARGH RAAAAAAAAAGE!”, you give it the fuel it needs. Doesn’t your body deserve as much respect as your car? So make an effort to reprogram the way that you think about food and the way your listen to your body. Your body is a pretty groovy cat and it knows what it needs and what it wants. Start thinking of food as a regular part of your life through highs and lows and not an opposing  enemy in battle. We can co exist…I assure!

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New Year’s Resolutions

So, today is the day after Christmas, and for those of us who celebrate it, we probably over ate, and are stuffed to the nines with sweets, turkey, and all of the amazing fixings.  Now, the day after, we feel bloated, and gross, and are bombarded with before and after pictures and overkill from the diet industry leading into the new year.  This may have some people wavering about their commitment to jump off of the diet train and stick with Health at Every Size. So here is my list of 10 better New Year’s Resolutions, than losing weight.

  

   1.Commit to doing activities that make you feel good 5 days a week.

Go ride a bike, play tennis, go for a walk, or just have a fucking living room dance party! Do these things because they feel good in your body and they are good for your body, not because you are trying to make your body something that it isn’t.

     2. Start living your life the way you planned to when you got thin! 

Instead of hiding in a shell and waiting for some arbitrary number to pop up on a scale to live your life the way that you want to, do it now! Always wanted to wear a bikini to the beach? Strap one on! Want to go to a bar and flirt your ass off? DO IT! Want to by that new outfit? Buy it now and  IN YOUR SIZE!

     3.Stop! Body shaming yourself. 

We’ve all been there, and I’m not going to lie to you, after all of these years, I still struggle with this sometimes. You get up in the morning, and your just not feeling it. You walk to the mirror and you start picking, you pick apart your body, your face, and your life. This year commit to stop! It’s like smoking, you just gotta quit cold turkey. Try that rubber band on this wrist thing that people are so fond of!

4. Be more spontaneous.

Sometimes, being a grown up, seems a lot like committing to be in a rut for your entire life. Break the cycle, and in 2013 try to be more spontaneous! Get in the car and just drive, let the GPS guide you back! Ask someone on a date. Go up and talk to a new person. Try a new restaurant. Doing new and spontaneous things can be exhilarating and boost your confidence!

5. Overcome something challenging.

My big challenge? Completing a Master’s degree. I wanted it so bad I could taste it. I wanted to give up many times along the way, but by god I finished it! What’s your challenge? What do you want to complete before the end of 2013? Make it happen!

6. Educate yourself.

2013 can be a year of learning for you. Despite what we may like to pretend, none of us knows everything. So this year, you can commit to learning about X# of new topics!

     7. Spend more time with the people you care about.

When people say life is short, they aren’t just kidding you. The older you get, the faster time seems to travel. When we get older, I assure we aren’t going to regret not accomplishing a purchasing order. We won’t be wishing we had just spend 5 more hours a week at work. And we sure as hell won’t be wishing we had spent a few more hours obsessing over our weight and body. We will wish we had more time with the people we loved. So, this year, don’t wait until it’s too late, do it now.

    8. Commit to a cause.

There is a lot of messed up stuff going on this world. There are people starving, children who can’t afford to go to school, LGBT people still can’t get equal rights, racism is rampant, everywhere you turn there is something going wrong! So, this year, commit all of the time that you used to spend obsessing over your body, dedicated to making the world a better place! Maybe  you don’t have the time to volunteer, whip out that wallet! Maybe you don’t have the cash, write your legislator. This year, do something to change the things you don’t like in our society, instead of on your body.

9. Reduce!

Forgive me, but I am going to get  preachy for just a second. We live in a consumer/throw away society. We do it with people and we do it with things. This year, make a commitment to stop doing it. Reduce the amount of things you have to throw away, instead choose recyclable materials when possible. Reduce the amount of animal products that you consume which are bad for your body (in excess), bad for the environment, and in the farm factory industry, bad for the animals. Reduce your buy in into mass consumerism, do you really need another Apple product? Finally, reduce the number of times that you throw people away because they don’t match up to your expectations. We are all just trying to get through this crazy messed up life and sometimes people need a little extra love and support.

Interested in reducing? Check out my friends blog about her minimalist journey (www.bornagainminimalist.com)

10. Be honest, be yourself. 

I saved this one for last, because it is also my New Year’s resolution. It’s easy to get caught up in the craziness of life. In a digital age, we are constantly aware of what we post on the web and how quickly information can be passed along. We have to be aware of not only what our friends and family may think, but what future employers may think of who we are and how we behave. It’s no surprise to me that we may all be a little guarded. My commitment this year, is a commitment to myself. I will be open and honest with myself, and the people around me.  I will let people in, and let them see who I really am and what I want out of my life. This year, I commit to tearing down the walls, that I have built to protect myself, and just live honestly, and happily. Maybe you’ll give it a try with me!

Now, these are just a few suggestions for resolutions that would be a better commitment than wasting time worrying about your weight. I’m sure you have got millions, and I would love to hear them. Leave your suggestions or personal resolutions in the comment section!

Turns out Weight Loss Surgery is Dangerous…who knew?

I know I’m a little blog crazy right now, but I keep finding these intersting things that I know I need to be sharing. So, I stumbled upon this article that I thought that everyone should read. It really hit home for me because I have a very close friend of mine is considering weight loss surgery much to my dismay.

You can read the article in its entirety here: http://www.medpagetoday.com/MeetingCoverage/ENDO/14670

But here are a few major points:

  • Bariatric surgery doubled the risk of fracture in a study
  • Hands and feet bore the brunt of the fracture risk, occurring at rates three to four times greater than would have been predicted
  • Although aggressive calcium and vitamin D supplementation after surgery may well help, it may still be insufficient to prevent the increased risk of fracture
  • The findings came from long-term follow-up of about 97 patients — mean age 44, 86 women — who had bariatric surgery from 1985 to 2004. Gastric bypass accounted for 90% of the surgical procedures, and the rest of the patients had either vertical banded gastroplasty or biliopancreatic diversion. Follow-up averaged seven years.

This just proves that yet again the medical community is not considering the risks of “obesity treatments” and in trying to eliminate what they view as a “problem” all they are doing is creating more problems.