Posts tagged anti diet
Holiday Pep Talk! (Part 2): Navigating Food, Body Image Issues, Comments and Diet Talk during the Holidays

Time for part 2 of our Holiday pep talk! In part 1 we discussed a few things that might help when you’re navigating the Holiday season as a vegan (and all the parties, dinners and gatherings that come with it). I stole Dani Shapiro’s writing exercise of beginning to dig deep by using the phrase “I remember…”, and then I turned it on its head with some support and reminders to you in the form of “remember…”. I just had to follow that post and podcast episode up by also talking about one of the topics we love here at The Brownble blog and podcast. I couldn’t leave you hanging without discussing the topics of food, body image, comments that might pop up regarding your appearance, as well as what to do when the inevitable January diet talk pops up, and you’re on this quest to find a better relationship with food, with your body and with yourself, stepping outside that diet culture paradigm of restriction and external rules of eating.

So here goes, are you ready?…

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Body Image Series: Behind the Curtain of Control

After a teary eyed episode last week, I'm finally here for part 4, the last installment of our body image series (at least for the time being). We've gone through so many aspects of our struggles with body image in the series. In part 1 I told you all about my rock bottom moment when it comes to body image and the fantastic tools that pulled me out of that place. In part 2 we discussed what the research is now showing when it comes to body image, body image resilience, and using the low points as jumping off points to slowly improve your relationship with your body. We also talked about self care (not self control or focusing on changing our bodies in order to love, appreciate and look after them). To me, acts of self care were one of the secrets to coming to a new relationship with my body and with food. In part 3, we talked about what happens when we have a different body, either due to illness, disability or circumstance, and I again told you about a painful/joyful part of my life, where I learned so much about what it means to navigate this beauty obsessed world.

Today we're going even deeper.

Today we're going deeper because our issues with body image and our relationship to food are like big juicy onions. Once you start peeling back the layers, you start to notice there is usually something at the core of these issues, something we try to keep hidden away below the surface, distracting ourselves with calorie counts, miles measured in apps on our phones, trying to control, tweak and change our bodies, and speaking negatively about our outside image instead of looking inward. 

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Body Image Series: A Different Body

In part 1 of our body image series I told you about my very own rock bottom moment and how it led me to finally find peace with my relationship with food and later, with my body. In part 2, we discuss what the research is saying about the role resiliency plays in improving our body image, and today, I'm sharing another part of my story. Today we're continuing our body image series with an episode dedicated to anyone who happens to be in a different body, whether it's due to illness, disability, or changes brought on by particular circumstances, today we honor bodies of all kinds. 

Something not many people know about me is what goes through my mind whenever I walk into an elevator, through the streets of a new city, into a public bathroom, or into a restaurant. It's something very unusual but almost instant. As I stroll down a pretty sidewalk in a new city, I notice whether or not the curb has a ramp, when I walk into an elevator I'm gauging its size, when I walk into a restaurant I notice stairs and whether the bathroom has a wide enough corridor to get to it, ditto, with restrooms and stalls. I do this because for my entire childhood and adolescence, I shared my life with someone who had a physical disability, my mom.

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Before a New Year Begins...

You know me and my love of milestones. birthdays, the beginning of a season, the start of a new year or a new chapter in my life. There's just something magical about new beginnings and it's a powerful moment to make promises to ourselves. In no other moment of the year is this truer than New Year's Eve. I always ask people this time of year if they make any resolutions and almost everyone has some kind of tradition of setting their gaze on a future goal, promising to do something they have yet to do, promising to leave stress behind a bit and focus more on the good stuff of life. I get it, I'm one of those people. I do this the night before a birthday, the night before a new year, when I'm sitting on a plane coming back home from a trip. It's so nice to sit with oneself and take stock of what really matters and what we'd like to change.

One of those years something very special happened, I promised myself I would look into that whole "vegan thing", boy was that a good idea and not in a million years could I have guessed where it brought me! It's been many years since that day and now I get to hear the stories of so many people who confide in me and look for support on their journey. You have no idea how much I think of those little conversations you and I have as true treasures. I would have also never thought that Carlos would join me on that journey, nor that we would have this place where we all get to hang out together. 

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The In-Between

I hinted last week that today we were going to talk about a place (or more of a moment really), that thanks to a friend of mine I've come to call The In-Between. No, this has nothing to do with weird vines, Christmas lights and creepy monsters that take over the town and steal children like the Stranger Things' "Upside Down". Sometimes though, it seems eerily similar, not while you're deep in the throws of it, but when you have that moment of realization that you've been in it, and you need to come out. It's a moment that comes right after a big event but before a new one. That can be a trip, a birthday, a new year, a promotion at work, exam time, the holidays, a big event or dinner you're planning. It's that state of "I'll get back in the groove of things as soon as X is over". For all my fellow ex-dieters, this could also be called the "I'll start the diet on Monday syndrome". For all you procrastinators it could be called the "I can do this tomorrow" syndrome. I call it The In-Between.

A few weeks ago, I was talking to a friend saying that I was in a complete and total rut. In spite of being a cook, in spite of being in the midst of testing all my holiday recipes for Brownble and all the dinner parties I host this time of year, I was in a rut when it came to my daily meals. I had days in which I stared blankly at an empty fridge, postponing my shopping trip yet again. I had days in which I had some items in there but my mind went blank so I opened the freezer door instead, only to find a bag of IKEA vegan meatballs, throw them in a pan and call it a day. For someone who decorates her own plate even when eating alone, I couldn't even recognize myself! 

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The Dieting Chronicles, Part 3

If it's the first time you're reading or listening to this series, I highly recommend that you start from the beginning so you get a full sense of where I'm coming from. I began this series after some very deep soul searching, I gave you an introduction to the series which included a little public apology I felt was important, and then we headed deep into the stories of the myriad of weight loss diets I tried, 23 to be exact, in part 1 and part 2 of the series. You'll hear all about the points, the crazy nutritionist, how deprivation and dieting itself can lead to not only weight gain but is the number one ingredient for a messy relationship with food. In last week's episode I covered mostly what happens when these body shaming, pro-restrictive voices come from people who have letters after their names, and how destructive that can be. I finished that episode by finally arriving at the point in which I found veganism. That's where we're picking things up today.

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The Dieting Chronicles, Part 2

We're back with part 2 of the dieting chronicles. In the past 2 weeks I've shared the introduction to the series, as well as the first installment in which I talked about my first experiences with dieting. A journey through 23 diets (some of them two or three times), none of which worked, and all of which left me with a very unhealthy relationship with food, not to mention the opposite of what I was striving for which was of course, weight loss. As I mentioned last week, I had always believed that it was the emotional and overeating patterns I learned as a child that were the ones that made my relationship with food "complicated" (to say the least), but it took me years to realize that although some healing needed to occur there too, it's actually the dieting, the restriction and the deprivation that ruins our chances of finding balance and peace with food.

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The Dieting Chronicles Intro (Plus a Public Apology)

I have a confession to make, and a few stories to tell you (by now you know I love going to the past and telling stories almost as much as I love eating cupcakes and I LOVE eating cupcakes). Today's stories though, are so very personal and tough, because they have to do with one of my biggest struggles, the one I've had since I was a little girl, with my favorite best friend/comfort/nemesis/I forgive you let's be friends again/why are you doing this to me/that's it your grounded again bestie: FOOD. My relationship with food though, as much as I love to eat, went hand in hand with dieting. Almost all my life. Even until recently. Hence the public apology I want to start this post with.

A couple of months ago I published three posts and three podcast episodes titled the "A Way of Eating" series. I was so happy when I wrote these posts because my intention behind them was to separate veganism from all the dogma that is out there when it comes to food rules, i.e. oil free, gluten free, soy free, clean eating, etc. These posts had a little surprise in store for me, something I wasn't expecting at all. Something that came in the form of an epiphany/ice bucket in the head wake up call that caught me completely by surprise. 

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