In today’s diet society, food is labeled good or bad. Certain foods are loaded with guilt because of the messages we are sent about these foods through our diet culture. Because we are bombarded with these messages, it somehow gets interpreted that as a person, you are “good” or “bad” based on what you eat. Just look at the verbiage that is used, “I was bad today, I had bread.” “I was good today, I stayed away from sugar.”
My friend, food is not a moral issue. It is food. You did not kill someone when you ate the pasta or rob a bank when you had the cookie. Yet, the guilt that is felt by so many that have followed the rigid diet rules of the should’s and shouldn’ts make people feel paralyzed with their day, as if they are so “bad.”
This sense of morality that is created is what keeps people stuck in the diet cycle. There is almost this “high” when you start a diet. Looking down on anyone that is eating the food that you have eliminated. That they are in some way less than you because you have the willpower to “resist” these foods. You are being so “good.” Maybe you aren’t consciously aware of this happening, but if you think back and really take inventory of how you felt during that time, it is often what you’ll find.
Then when you are off the diet and/ or feeling “bad” with food, it’s as if you project that everyone is judging what you are eating. They all, somehow know you are off the diet and the shame that you feel, makes you feel awful. It can spiral into a place of self- sabotage. Feeling the sense of “what the hell,” I’ll just keep being “bad” and throw all self-care out the window.
The diet industry has done a brilliant job in their psychological approach with marketing on why you need the latest shake, pill, program or diet. It talks to these vulnerable, insecure places that everything will be better, and you’ll finally be happy when you lose the weight, change your body and finally be “enough.” But we know that doesn’t ever really happen. Diets are not sustainable and certainly, by the industry’s standards, your body can always be better.
If you really look at this sense of morality with food that is created, it is essentially, your choice to take it on as a belief system of yourself. To no longer believe in this limiting belief, you have to heal the parts of you that feel, that you are not enough. You must find the separation of food, along with the behaviors you use with food, and you, as a person. They are not the same. What you eat does not mean anything about you and who you are. This may have been taught to you. But my friend, it is not your truth.
You see, when you find the truth, you find that true, authentic you. You find why you are using diets for the false sense of control. You look at the areas of life that you are not feeling enough in. You see the light within yourself that no type of food could ever darken.
It is this way of thinking that can release from the moral judgement of food. When you are in a kinder, more connected place with yourself, you find the choices you make to be more loving and more respectful to your body. You can eat the cookie and it does not make the day bad, but more satisfying that you enjoyed a delicious dessert. You shed the weight that food has held on your morality and find the light that is within you.