Hello hello! How’s everyone?
So, Amanda had a post up last week about feeling defensive about eating healthy that really resonated with me. Then Caitlin had one, and then Sarah. So, I feel the need to chime into the conversation.
It’s no secret that there is a LOT of disordered behaviour in healthy living blogs. I’ve spoken out against this before, and I’ll speak out against it time and time again. What people portray as healthy living can sometimes be anything but. I don’t believe that cutting out entire food groups or categories is healthy (barring allergies and sensitivities, of course) and a life without sugar isn’t exactly my idea of a good time.
But, with speaking out so much against those behaviours I feel like I’ve backed myself into a corner a little bit. I’ve made it clear that I’m all about body acceptance, listening to your body, and eating what you’re craving, even if that’s something that’s traditionally seen as a ‘bad’ food.
(onions rings are a particular favourite)
(The epic wing night)
(dessert round = best round)
I worry that on the blog, I make it seem like the majority of my diet is made up of these foods. Really, that could be further from the truth. These sorts of meals? Rare, in my diet. But, peanut butter and jam chicken wings are a lot more interesting than a salad with chicken and avocado, so I tend to draw attention to the prior.
After an eating disorder, people can be pretty vigilant in their monitoring your behaviour. I remember an ex of mine used to ask me to tell him what I had eaten that way, so he could judge whether or not I had eaten enough or if I was restricting. I found myself ordering dessert even if I didn’t really want it, or being afraid to order a salad because I was afraid of people thinking that I was backsliding back into the disorder. I think I’m still finding myself with my back up, always fearing that people are judging how I’m eating. So, I make sure to mention all the ‘unclean’ foods I eat.
Truth is, on an average day my eats are pretty damn healthy.
There’s a lot of oatmeal…
A lot of salads…
And most of my desserts are small and portion-controlled.
That is basically what makes up my diet. As much as I love my onion rings and my chocolate cake, I don’t actually eat it too often. I’m a big believer in balance, so that is what I focus on.
Which for me, means leaving all the chocolate cake leftovers with my parents, because I know my self control would be lacking around it. I absolutely adored it and think it’s one of the best cakes I’ve made to date, but I know I’m better off without that cake staring me in the face every time I open the fridge.
It means that I try to include fresh produce in the vast majority of lunches and dinners.
It means that while I don’t count calories, I do keep portion control in mind.
It means that unless I’m craving the ‘unhealthier’ option, I’m probably going to go with the healthier one. It means that sometimes I choose the healthier option because I’ll feel better physically and mentally.
It means that while I enjoy the emotional and physical health benefits of a healthy lifestyle, I like the way it makes me look, too.
In the blogging atmosphere, I have no trouble blogging about the junk and the ‘unclean’ food that I eat, but I find it harder to blog about the healthier stuff. I’m afraid of someone pointing a finger and accusing me of still harbouring disordered tendencies. I worry that I need to ‘prove’ that I’m perfectly fine to eat a burger or a big piece of cake. I think that’s my biggest fear in blogging – being accused of still holding onto disordered habits or being a negative influence on people who are trying to recover. One of my favourite things about blogging is the emails I receive from people telling me how much I helped them see what ‘normal’ eating is and that it’s ok to eat the ‘bad’ stuff. So, I worry about losing that sort of influence if I focus too much on the healthier eats.
But, there you have it, and I hope I’m not judged for it. I do eat ‘junk’, but I don’t eat it all the time. I pay attention to portions, and to a limited extent my macros (in the sense that I’m playing around with them to see what my body responds to best) and I eat a lot of veggies, healthy fats and lean proteins. I have no fear of sugar-filled or greasy foods, but I have no interest in eating them all the time. If I did, I would not feel, act, or look as healthy as I do, so I don’t. I started in healthy living blogs because I do feel like I am a health nut – maybe not as much as I was a year ago, but it’s still in there.
I believe in moderation, so I’m going to keep that in mind as I continue with the blog and portray an accurate picture of how I eat, even if it ends in judgement or pointed fingers.
Aaaaaaand now I feel better now that that’s off my shoulders. Back to my regular blogging habits tomorrow – have a good one!
<— Bloggers, do you ever worry about being judged for your eating habits?
<— Recovering or recovered EDs: do you feel like you have to ‘prove’ that you can eat unhealthy foods?
<— Do you think you follow the 80/20 rule? While it’s not really conscious, I think that that principle probably best reflects my approach to eating.