If you are in the midst of your healing journey, or maybe you’re in the contemplation phase, it’s normal that the desire to lose weight is still there. Honestly, it will be for a while and that’s totally normal and okay.
I want to dive in a little deeper as to why the desire to lose weight and healing your relationship with food and your body cannot coexist together. I want us to explore this common desire for weight loss as a means to heal our relationship with food without shame or judgment and offer you ways to support your through your journey.
“Body confidence and food freedom are not reserved for thinner bodies”
Some people wait until they lose weight to feel as though they are now deserving of healing their relationship with food. But, by waiting until you are in a certain body, in order to change your relationship with food and your body, is only perpetuating the cycle! You are only delaying your opportunity to heal even more, when in reality, every body is deserving of starting their healing journey.
The dieting cycle of potentially losing weight, then regaining it all back will only make you feel worse right? So, then you postpone your healing because we want to lose the weight again because you tell yourself that it can only start once you lose the weight.
If you’re ready to heal but still have this desire to lose weight, I get it. This isn’t to shame you or make you feel bad for wanting to lose weight. What I’m saying is you shouldn’t let this be the determining factor of whether or not you are worthy of healing your relationship with food and your body.
It’s important to start changing that narrative and priorities so that we can focus on actually healing, in a way that is independent on someone’s weight.
I don’t think asking people to not want to lose weight is fair. For some people, they may have had traumatic experiences in their bodies. Maybe they’re being discriminated against or maybe there’s a lot of stigma with the body that they live in. Which means living in that body feels unsafe. It makes a lot of sense that you would want to try to change it to do something for it to feel safe again.
Some of these traumas may be related to the messages from diet culture. We are constantly being told to feel ashamed of our bodies, so me telling you that you shouldn’t want to lose weight is unrealistic and insensitive.
HOWEVER, the priority has to shift to being about making peace with food and your body, without having weight in the equation. The reason that we want to use this language is that if you try to intentionally pursue weight loss as you heal, you’re not going to succeed at either of these things. We can’t actively do both.
When you start to let go of weight loss as your number one priority, you are creating more mental space to accept new perspectives on what healing can actually look like.
I want you to think about your journey to your body so far. It may involve some form of diet or restriction in order to lose weight, because you’ve been told over and over and over again that that’s what I needed to do. Now, here you are today. What was the cost of all those ups and downs?
By questioning this, you are creating more space to be curious and nor furious with yourself. Ask yourself: Okay, I’ve tried all these things, now can I give myself the opportunity to focus on healing and see what that would look like?
I know, the biggest resistance is letting go weight loss. This idea of finding food freedom and body acceptance, in your current body feels so aligned yet unfamiliar. It’s almost too good to be true, because it has never felt like the truth.
There is no right or wrong way to live in your body. Just like there is no right or wrong way to start your healing journey. I don’t want to minimize that weight loss may still be important to you. Because there’s many reasons why it’s probably still important to you. I want you to recognize that as long as you hold the belief that you can’t be happy, confident, healthy etc. without weight loss, you are most likely going to stay stuck in this cycle.
I am asking you to put the goal of weight loss aside or perhaps lower it on your priority list, so that you can focus on healing.
When you learn to make peace with food and your body, your whole perspective will change, because you have given yourself permission and the space to do so. You learn to take care of your body at a whole new level and trust that our body will find its way.
How do I want to live today?
Do I want to work with my body in alignment with my values?
Or am I going to be at war with my body today?
We know that there are more supportive ways to heal your relationship with food and your body than trying to connect healing and weight loss. The reality is that they cannot coexist, but if you find yourself at this awkward intersection right now, that’s okay. Even if healing is scary, you’ve got this, because you are capable of doing hard and scary things.
Check out my FREE Class to learn more about my Guilt Free Method so that you can find food freedom and feel good in your body.
Hear me talk more about this topic on this week’s podcast episode! Click the links below to listen:
The Balanced Practice is a team of professionals specialized in eating disorder outpatient treatment, disordered eating. Our mission is to help as many folks heal their relationship with food and their bodies so they can live happily outside of diet culture!
We strive to provide evidence based nutrition counselling to support you, or your loved one, in achieving full recovery. Schedule a connection call now.
Marie-Pier Pitre-D’Iorio, RD, B.Sc.Psychology
Lead Registered Dietitian and Founder of The Balanced Practice