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5 Tips to Challenging Diet Culture

5 Tips to Challenging Diet Culture

Orthorexia, an image of vegetables wrapped in a measuring tape

Sponsored by McCallum Place

Here are 5 tips and reminders to help you take action against diet culture:

  1. You don’t need to “earn” or “work for” food. Food is a resource for your body. Do you make yourself work for oxygen? Do you only take your daily medications if you’ve been “good?” NO! Why should food be any different? Work to adopt this mindset for yourself and for others.
  2. Deepen your awareness of diversity (or lack thereof) in the media that you follow. Are all body types, races, ethnicities, genders and sexual orientations represented? Who is excluded? How can you diversify your media consumption? Take the opportunity to fill your life (and screens) with body-diverse images, friends and role models.
  3. Exercise is a demonstration of what your body can do! It should not feel like a chore. Move your body in ways that feel good to you! Find joyful movement in everyday activities. Find ways to PLAY while exercising.
  4. Challenge internal biases regarding thinness and thin privilege. We have all internalized fat phobia and diet culture. This step is about reversing that. How are you persuaded by a culture of thin privilege? Do you have automatic thoughts popping up that need challenging? What thoughts our beliefs can you challenge to more accurately reflect your values?
  5. Connect with yourself! Push away all the “rules” about what, when, how, and how much to eat and exercise, and instead embrace truly caring for yourself and celebrating what your body can do!

Take notice of the campaigns that overtly promote diet culture. These messages tend to glorify thinness while shaming other body types. Remember, losing weight does not automatically make someone healthy, just as living life in a larger body does not mean they are unhealthy, unwholesome, or unworthy.

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