12 Reminders For When You're Struggling With Food And Body Image

12 Reminders For When You're Struggling With Food And Body Image

Food is important for daily functioning, no body size is best and your life is worth more than these worries.

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Body positivity, true healthy eating and self-compassion can be hard, especially in a word filled with fatphobia, the idea that men must be muscular, diet tips and photoshopped models. Add stress and emotions, which can cause changes in weight and appetite, and your body may not feel like home.

However, our bodies are super rad. They do so, so much for us; they carry out so many intricate functions that we may not even know or comprehend. Our bodies are the only true home we'll ever have, the only thing that will constantly be with us, so let's learn to appreciate it and love it right. Trust your body, and it will trust you.

1. Food = fuel.

Food gives us the energy to hug our friends, to travel, to go to work and make money, to go out with friends, to watch our favorite shows, to kiss.

2. At least 20% of the energy you receive from food goes towards your brain's functioning.

That's your grades, your ability to read articles, getting ready in the morning, creating happy memories, being an efficient employee and being able to have conversations with loved ones. Plus, people with eating disorders think about food up to 100% of the time. Imagine how much that limits your daily living!

3. Fat (or any other body type) isn't bad, and we need fat to live.

Fat does not have moral value. It's simply a nutrient necessary for life.

4. Worrying about food is a waste of time.

Believe me when I say it is not worth it to be stressed about food when you're eating out with friends. Believe me when I say it's better to eat what you want and your mind be able to focus on those who bring you happiness.

5. Wanting seconds, wanting to eat when others aren’t, and eating emotionally do NOT make you a bad person.

You are allowed to eat when and what and how much you want. Embrace your body's wants and needs!

6. When you get older, you will not look back on your life and wish you were smaller.

You will wish you would've spent more time with people you love, going on adventures and enjoying that 2 a.m. Waffle House.

7. Think about everything you are, and your size becomes less and less relevant.

Daughter. Son. Doctor. Gas station worker. Lover of noodles. Avid football watcher. Fashion lover. The funny one. The friend. Someone who has the strength to get up and live. The rap music lover.

8. Yeah, maybe you don’t love some aspects of your body -- but that isn’t all of you.

You are whole. You are a combination of so much and cannot be defined by only a couple of details.

9. Not eating -- or eating too much -- won’t solve your problems. Neither will having a different body size.

Geneen Roth has some amazing books about compulsive eating. The food isn't the problem, it's what you're trying to fight by using food. Your body isn't the problem, and fat is not a feeling.

10. Body struggles are not dealt with exclusively by a certain kind of person or body type.

All people -- genders, races, ages, levels of ability, sexual orientations and more can be affected. Those who are minorities often struggle more with body politics and are disproportionately affected and also stereotyped against. You don't have to look a certain way to be "sick enough" or valid.

11. Can’t feel body posi? Try body neutral.

AKA: I have a body. My body helps me get places and completes other cool functions.

12. Many resources are available to you for however you feel.

I'll say it again: you deserve help, no matter who you are or what you look like!
  1. National Eating Disorders Association on Eating Disorders
  2. National Eating Disorders Association on Body Image

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I'm The 'Fat Friend' And I Am OK With That

My size will not be my downfall.

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"As a child, fat was the first-word people used to describe me, which didn't offend me until I found out it was supposed to" - Blythe Baird

Growing up, I have always had a problem with my weight. I was the biggest kid in all of my primary school classes and the obese child in the family. Of course, when I was little, I didn't know that "fat" was a derogatory word. I didn't even notice that I had a problem until I was told otherwise.

Every doctor visit became more about the weight shown on the scale rather than the reason I was there. Every Christmas photo became me standing next to Santa because I was afraid I would break his leg if I sat on it. Every school lunch became me giving my tray to someone else so I wouldn't have to eat the food on it.

My size became my life, and it ruined my self-esteem.

But then it all changed. After years of hating how big I was, I started changing. I learned to wear clothes that make me look and feel confident. I started looking at myself in the mirror and loving what I saw. I started smiling when trying on clothes. I started loving myself.

My weight was just a number - it no longer defined me as a person.

I did try to lose weight, but it was more about health than size. I shopped for clothes that fit my body and all of its beautiful curves. I eat what I want when I want now. When people call me fat to hurt me, I no longer let it resonate in my mind. I am big and I am beautiful.

Yeah, I am the "fat friend," but I wouldn't change that for a thing.

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To The Pretty Girl, You're Just What They Want

A pretty face in a crowd is a dime-a-dozen....

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To the pretty face,

You are the pretty one. Trust me I know. People walk by, their heads turn. You give them a smile and move along. But as you continue they don't turn around, they don't ask for a date. They won't see what's within. They just see your pretty face. And nothing more.

They won't see your kind heart and warm soul. They won't see you, talk to the person who looks lonely in the grocery store. They won't see you give the shirt off your back to help someone. They won't see the good that you do. They won't see you talk to your best friend tonight. They just see that pretty face. The men especially. They bet how long it will take. To get that stunning girl in their bed. They talk, they make you feel different, they make you feel special. Then they try and guess what they succeeded. Then they leave. It's a bet you see? You don't because you're broken. Ever so broken. To be loved, you had wished. To be held. You can't get passed the feeling of being broken and hurt every damn time. Because a pretty face is all that they see.

They won't even care what's within. You think he was your next prince charming, to sweep you off your feet. But he was the next to break your heart. You lay awake most nights, scared. Asking questions; Will I be loved? Will I ever get commitment? Probably not because it's just a pretty face they see. Nothing more and nothing less. You feel a standard is needed to be held. Dress like that, makeup has to always be done. Don't you ever dare let them see the blemishes, the flaws, the insecurities You will get hurt. They don't want you. They never do. What will the next guy hold? A quick and go? A forever? I will never know. Does he really want me? Or what is between my legs. To know what is behind your shattered heart? Because all he sees is a pretty face.

Maybe you will learn quicker than I did honey. That they just want the pretty face. One day you'll realize and you will run faster than your legs can take you. One day the walls will come down, and they will see more than your pretty face.

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