Over 95% of diets fail, yet we’re spending billions of dollars a year on them. Not only are we wasting our money, we’re damaging our physical and mental health.
Imagine what your life would be like if you never had to go on another diet, follow another meal plan, or think about which foods you can and can’t eat.
Having that liberation from dieting is a possibility. But I totally understand that taking that step away from dieting can feel scary if you’ve been dieting for a long time.
When I began learning more about the diet industry and it’s impact on our physical and mental health, I knew it was time for me to walk away.
The diet industry generates over $70 billion a year, yet Americans are among the unhealthiest people in the world suffering from high rates of heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and other diseases.
The problem with diets is that they focus on weight and body aesthetics rather than health, which is why dieting isn’t solving our health issues.
Take a look at these diets…
The first formal diet was introduced in 1825 when Jean Brillat-Savarin, a French lawyer and politician, discussed a low-carb diet in “The Physiology of Taste.”
In the early 1900’s, the Tapeworm Diet was popular. You swallowed a tapeworm or tapeworm pills, live in your stomach and consume some of your food.
In 1925, smoking cigarettes was a popular way to lose weight.
In the 1940’s, the Master Cleanse or Lemonade Diet was introduced. People drank a mixture of lemon juice and other ingredients six times a day for up to 10 days. This diet was made popular again by Beyoncé in 2005.
There are so many more…the Grapefruit Diet, the Cabbage Soup Diet, the Apple Cider Vinegar Diet, Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, the Sleeping Beauty Diet, Food Combining, Paleo, the Zone Diet, the South Beach Diet, Intermittent Fasting, Keto.
While all of these diets may have different approaches, they’re all the same in that they require restriction, disconnecting from your body to follow a plan, and focusing on weight rather than health.
It’s obvious that dieting has nothing to do with health when plans require us to put parasites in our bodies, smoke cigarettes, live off of only one food, or drink lemon water for 10 days.
The majority of these diets were also invented by men. And dieting and weight loss is upheld by the patriarchy.
“Diet culture is a tool of the patriarchy because of how fixated on diminishing ourselves we can become,” Kimberly Dark, author of “Fat, Pretty and Soon to be Old.”
Read: Tools of the Patriarchy: Diet Culture and How We All Perpetuate the Stigma
When we’re solely focused on shrinking our body and following a diet to do so, we become disconnected from our body.
When we disconnect from our body’s hunger cues and the symptoms our body is showing us, we’re no longer supporting our health (physically, mentally, and emotionally) or focusing on what’s really imporatnt. Because diets focus solely on food restriction, we’re not even considering our health in a holistic way. Our mental and emotional health have a huge impact on our physical health.
Dieting also causing weight cycling, which means your weight goes up and down over and over again. Weight cycling has an impact on our mental and physical health including increasing the risk of heart disease.
Dieting and diet culture is rooted in fatphobia. When people experience weight stigma because of fatphobia, they’re more likely to experience poorer health outcomes.
Also keep in mind that the success rate of dieting is around 5 percent. Diets aren’t made to be successful.
You can be healthy at any size. You’ve probably heard someone say, “Oh, she’s just naturally thin.” Have you ever considered that people are also naturally in a larger body?
We’re not all meant to live in thin bodies. The diet industry has convinced us that thinness makes us more beautiful and makes us more worthy as people. That’s just not true.
We’re all worthy regardless of the size of our bodies.
Check out the resources in my Virtual Yoga Studio such as my mini workshops – How to Shift Your Focus Away From Weight and Toward Well-Being and Intro to Intuitive Eating or my yoga class Body Positive Yoga Flow and Yoga for Body Acceptance or my 7 Ways to Honor Your Body Guide.
I’m also opening up a few spots for private health coaching. You can schedule a one-time coaching session or choose a coaching package here.