“The Whole 30” –
It’s a Diet
“Lifestyle Change” –
Sometimes it feels like the message to Ditch the Diet is falling on deaf ears. This should not surprise me. Although it does dishearten me.
The culture of dieting is so corrosively ingrained in our society that many people don’t even realize the dangerous cycle they are caught up in.
When I say diet, I’m not just referring to the crazy stuff. I am referring to all of it! Even all of the gimmicks to lose weight under the heading of health.
The thing that is sends me over the edge is what these “healthy lifestyle changes” are doing to the children. I’m not even talking about the lack of evidence base that all this garbage is based on, although that too is a huge concern. I am talking about the psychological impact it will have on them— for life.
I am not making this up…I have been watching it unfold for 25 years. We are not the sum total of our weight and shape. A certain weight does not dictate health, but you know what does? Our mind. And when we destroy our self- worth and that of our children with restrictive eating and patting people on the back for being thinner, we do irreparable damage.
The health effects of yoyo dieting and the emotional damage done from repeat dieting are more predictive of physical health problems than that of “excess” weight. It’s the truth folks. It’s hard to talk about, but the evidence is pretty darn clear.
And until our culture begins to rally around diversity in shape, size and body weight, we are on the fast train to the biggest s*** show ever.
Let children be self-regulated like they are designed to be. Offer a variety of foods from all the food groups at every meal. Let THEM decide how much they want to eat and if they want to eat it. The parents job is to provide the variety. It will even out…sometimes they won’t have enough and will leave the table wishing they had more, and other times they will be too full, but most of the time they will be just right.
I won’t go into any more details as I wrote an entire book with all the reasons why dieting is ineffective and dangerous. And all the damage that is done in the process. And I also outline ways to proceed if truly looking for “health”. Spoiler alert It’s NOT “The Whole 30”.
But for the love, please please please don’t put your kids on diets.
97% of dieters gain the weight back plus more…and the 3%, believe me, you don’t want to be them either.