Christmas has recently ended, with this goes the craze of diet talk in the media. Everybody suddenly gasps at their waistline and commits to dieting. January 1st rolls in and with this brings in New Year’s resolutions and everybody is soon to ditch their selection boxes and bottles of wine, for bowls of soup and exercise routines. Everywhere you look seems to be bombarded with information regarding the best weight loss tips, diets and information on how you can easily drop a dress size.
‘New Year, New me’
Also, with Summer soon approaching in a couple of months people are set on getting their ‘perfect summer body.’ Magazines are filled page after page with celebrities and their ‘ideal small frames’ which adds to the pressure in making other people look the same. We get brainwashed by the things we see and read, more often than not forgetting they are photoshopped and airbrushed to an unrealistic standard. Nobody has a ‘flawless body’ or ‘flawless skin’. And even so, why should it matter? Isn’t it important what’s on the inside, rather than the out?
We should be promoting health and body confidence, as opposed to weight loss and unhappiness.
Leading us to believe that tummy rolls and cellulute are abnormal, when in fact, we need them in order to protect our organs. Body fat is essential and important, it isn’t the enemy. I mean, if Miley Cyrus is on a diet and is flaunting her 6-pack-abs then it definitely must be a necessity, right? Definitely not. Again, the majority of people will take to a silly diet which isn’t very beneficial for their health at all. There is a high level of pressure put on us to look a certain way and in order to fit in certain clothes sizes but happiness and health isn’t worth risking in order to fit in a size 0.
There is no wrong way to have a body. Each body is beautiful and unique. Our bodies are the houses to our souls and we would be nothing without them.
Now, this diet talk is all well and good… If you’re not suffering from an Eating Disorder like I am (as are millions of people worldwide.) As an Anorexia sufferer, I dread this time of year simply because I find the dieting fad to be triggering and harmful. May I just add, it isn’t possible to avoid these adverts as they are literally the main focus for most people. If you’re not being plagued on the television with these ads, your colleague has just announced to you that they are starting a diet. Arghhh! My thoughts tend to go crazy whilst people are choosing to shed a few pounds, with common thoughts such as ‘Well, if they’re dieting I need to’ ‘Everybody else can lose weight and so can I.’ The pressure to diet in order to fit in really hits home and makes this time of year more difficult than ever.
These advertisements seem torturous, whilst half the nation is dieting, cutting out food groups and restricting calories (which I DO NOT recommend!!) There are also people who are being told left, right and centre to eat, the importance of eating and with hospital threats being thrown in your direction almost always, you have no choice but to listen to those around you. It seems like a punishment, constantly questioning why people are trying to make you fat whilst they’re going along all willy-nilly making possibly harmful changes to their calorie intake.
An important thing to remember is that the people advertising these diets aren’t aiming them at anybody in particular. In fact, they are part of a money making scheme ~as told by my lovely Therapist~ where they try and rail people in as a means of bringing them in a higher profit. Because ultimately, the more people following these fad diets, the more recognition these companies get which in the long-run brings them in more money. Hence why the advertising is everywhere, so you’re guaranteed to not miss an opportunity to see what slimming world has in store. Unfortunately, these companies don’t batter an eyelid to people suffering with ED’s and they most certainly don’t care about the impact their diets could have on other people’s lives. IE- Causing them to develop an Eating Disorder or causing them to land with dangerous medical conditions from heavily restricting.
We must do our best to remember that just because some people choose to diet, it doesn’t mean you’re obligated too aswell. Just because Jenny from Manchester is going on a no-carb diet, that doesn’t mean you have to and it isn’t a way to get at you. It’s also important to remember that these diets do NOT last, meaning most people will commit to them for a day or two before getting bored and returning to their usual eating habits. Some people don’t diet, they just say it in order to fit in with the conversation topic. As difficult as it is, we must focus on ourselves, our journeys and what is best for us.
We should not be guilty for focusing on ourselves and stopping ourselves using unhealthy coping mechanisms. We cannot wrap ourselves up in cotton wool to protect us from harmful things, but we can learn coping mechanisms as a means of dealing with any reoccurring negative thoughts we may be having.
The most important thing is that we focus on recovery and keep our personal goals in mind: regaining ourselves, our lives, our health, happiness and sparkle.