Quit Feeling Guilty About Enjoying Food, Again, F*ck Diet Culture

By: Marie Kamal

Did you have an extra chocolate cake over the weekend? Or an extra pizza slice while watching Netflix in bed all day on Thursday? If you did, and I hope you did, I’m sure you enjoyed it. But if you are still obsessing over that pizza slice you ate two days ago, then we need to talk.

How many times did you punish yourself before or after you ate something? How many times did you hear this crap voice in your head beating you up when you ate, drowning you in a vicious cycle of guilt and fear. You ate these delicious Nutella pancakes for breakfast and as you finish the last bite you hear this voice yelling at you: ”Why did you eat those damn pancakes? Who would look at you now? You’re just getting fatter and fatter! Should’ve had a bowl of oatmeal or a granola bar.”

You shame yourself for eating.
You guilt-trip yourself for eating.
You punish yourself for eating.
Then you feel so bad, you starve yourself.
Then you lose control, so you binge.
and the circle completes, before starting again.

I blame the media for putting out the “ideal body” and for labeling food as good and bad. Within five minutes of being on social media, you’ll see someone associating guilt with the food they just ate or posted. You’ll see ads everywhere of tall and skinny as hell models and you think “ Damn they look good! Why don’t I look like this?”. You get up. Go look at yourself in the mirror, and instead of admiring yourself and your beauty, you start bringing yourself down. You start counting all of your flaws, one by one. And this is where everything starts falling. You deprive yourself of the food you like that you labeled as “bad”. You start counting calories. And the day you break the rules you made for yourself, you feel miserable. Why?

When I started going on social media, like 5 or 6 years ago. I always saw these “thin” and tall models on Instagram and not going to lie, I wanted to be like them. I started depriving myself of food, especially the food I enjoyed because enjoying food felt like a crime. I would weigh myself every single day. Which is so fucked up. I wasn’t happy. I wasn’t happy when I lost weight. So I decided to eat again to gain what I lost. When I gained weight, I felt guilty and decided to lose the weight again. And stopped eating all the things I loved. These voices were always controlling me. What if you gained weight? Your clothes won’t fit you anymore. Your friends will hate you. I was living in fear and guilt. Two years ago, I said fuck it, I don’t care anymore. I’ll eat whatever the hell I want, whenever I want.

And you should do that. You really should. Letting go of food guilt and eating what you want is the best decision you can ever make.

Food guilt is the norm in our society. But we can stop that or at least we can allow it little control over our lives. It’s hard. But you can do it. Think about it this way: you need food to survive, so why bring yourself down while you eat it? I know what you are going to tell me that not all foods are good for our health. Well, I agree but I am sure that 99% of us like food that’s not good for our health like and so what? That’s fine. Like for God’s sake; who doesn’t want a massive stack of waffles for breakfast?

Diet culture is “a set of beliefs revolving around the idea that “thin” bodies are the most valuable and healthy”. It labels food as “good” or “bad” and that’s a person’s worth increases when eating healthy. Well, fuck that.

How the frick can you judge someone based on what they eat?

Diet culture tells us that losing weight is a good thing, no matter how it’s done. You compliment someone when they lose weight. Don’t lie, I’m sure you did it once or twice. But the question is why don’t you also compliment them when they gain weight? Like you know as much as someone wants to lose weight as much as another one is trying to gain it. Because here’s a thing. You see Kendall Jenner and at the same, you see Kim K. And you’re like: am I in this lane or that lane? Do I want a “thin” figure or an hourglass shape? You say that like it’s your choice. It isn’t. Because if you think about it, if all the population looked the same, where’s the fun in that? Being different is amazing. Our bodies are actual miracles.

What our bodies look like is not in our control, the only thing we have control of is how we choose to take care of our bodies. Your body is smart. It knows when it wants food and what kind of food it needs. If your body wants a cupcake then go get a fucking cupcake it’s not the end of the world. But make sure you eat it without guilt. You are doing this for yourself.

Stop labeling food and start eating what satisfies you. Do you want to eat an apple pie instead of an apple? Do it. You prefer to eat a salad for lunch instead of a burger and fries? Do it. It’s your life and your choices. Whatever makes you happy.

I’m going to go get dinner now.

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