Businesses in the health and weight loss industry are very eager to welcome the new year (and increased revenue) as millions of people set New Year’s resolutions related to dieting, exercise, and weight loss. Companies step up their ad campaigns—featuring promises of quick and easy weight loss paired with suspicious “before” and “after” photos—as they know the enthusiasm peters out only a few weeks after the calendar turns January 1 every year.
In my practice, I know the increased diet talk and marketing makes it an especially challenging time for those who have felt disappointment, shame, guilt, and increased food and body worries due to dieting. You see, there’s a mountain of research showing that dieting causes more harm than good and is an excellent predictor of weight gain. And yet, being surrounded by compelling weight loss ads, celebrity endorsements, and enthusiastic coworkers experiencing a (temporary) diet honeymoon can make it difficult not to fall victim to yet another diet, promising yourself, “Oh, just this one last diet.”
I understand it’s not easy to go against the grain (not literally) and be counterculture, so I wanted to compile a list of articles and resources to help inspire you and strengthen your anti-diet armor.
A New Kind of New Year’s Resolution: Practicing Peace With Your Body by Michelle Lelwica: I just love these ten tips for practicing peace with your body, and often print them out to share with clients. If you like these tips, check out Lelwica’s other blog posts on Psychology Today or book The Religion of Thinness for thought-provoking insights on the spiritual hungers behind our culture’s obsession with thinness–and what to do about it.
The Religion of Dieiting–How to Tolerate Friends & Evangelists of the Latest, Greatest Diet by Evelyn Tribole: If you find the ramped up diet talk around you frustrating, take solace in these words of wisdom from the co-author of Intuitive Eating to help you cope.
Warning: Dieting Increases Your Risk of Gaining MORE Weight by Evelyn Tribole: Still need a gentle reminder on the risks of dieting? Look no further.
The HAES Files: Boot the Bully from your Brain: Michelle May, MD asks, “What internal beliefs about weight have you internalized? Are those beliefs helping you or harming you?” Here are some tips to help you embrace health and self-care by dropping any unhelpful judgments you might have about your weight.
Interview with Tara Brach, PhD, author of Radical Acceptance: Boston-based radio show host Francesca interviews psychologist and spiritual teacher Tara Brach on how to be free from “the trance of unworthiness” and cultivate what she calls “radical acceptance.” I listen to Tara’s podcasts most mornings to help me start the day on a more mindful and compassionate note. Click on the link to the podcast near the bottom of the page to access the interview.
Is there an article or resource that has inspired you? Don’t keep it to yourself, share them here! Rather than let the multi-billion dollar diet industry profit from your human insecurities, let’s support one another in cultivating genuine, authentic health by practicing peace with ourselves and each other.