Posts tagged body image
Relationship with Food Series Part 4: Saying Goodbye to Restriction + What Do you Like to Eat?

We’re back with part 4 of our relationship with food series in which we’re going to dive in a bit deeper into the role restriction can play in our relationship with food, how saying goodbye to restriction might be a huge help, and how being vegan, or making other dietary choices for ethics, religious beliefs, etc., fits into this.

As you know, in this series of shorter episodes and posts I’m guiding you through a little journey towards the resources, tools and general mindset we can access to help us improve our relationship with food. For me it was a journey of many ups and downs, navigating emotional eating, overeating, occasional binges, and even more frequent dieting and restricting. Then came an over-obsession on eating “healthy”, “clean” and “pure” foods. It took me a long time to find the resources and amazing experts that would finally give me the tools that helped, but my hope is that I can be here to present them to you, so that you can go through this process with the guiding hand of the incredible pros and qualified experts that helped me so much.

The Pitcher of Water

When I got started on my journey, through all the different steps and stages I’ve been telling you about in this series, I soon realized that restricting foods was like a pitcher of water that was holding me inside. It gave me the false sense that my issues with food were contained and under control. The thing is though, that restriction and dieting are also like a water tap that can’t be turned off, countless rules and regulations that keep getting piled up on top of each other until you can’t hold them any longer. Eventually, there’s just too much water in the pitcher and it overflows and makes a mess in the kitchen.

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Relationship with Food Series Part 3: Seeing our Food and Body Image Struggles Collide

Last week in our relationship with food series we talked about the importance of safely, and from a distance, going on a little exploration journey. I asked you to look back at some of your stories and personal history with food to learn from it and view it with as much kindness as you could muster. For me, the first step in improving my relationship with food was taking an honest look at where I was with food, acknowledging that I was struggling and where that struggle was actually coming from. The very next step was taking inventory. I had to look back at my history with food and all the damage that going on endless diets had done, understanding that so many of my struggles with overeating and emotional eating came from this self-imposed restriction and focus on control and perfectionism. Soon after going on this little self discovery journey, it was time for me to see a different side of the equation, and it’s what we’re going to talk about today.

Body image was what was usually behind many of my habits with food and exercise and yet it was so incredibly difficult for me to see. So much of my focus was on healing what I considered to be my only problem: I would sit down to eat and paid no attention to my body’s cues, I would overeat until the point in which I was severely uncomfortable, and I would emotionally eat using food as my only coping tool to deal with difficult emotions. Just as I hadn’t seen the negative role restriction had played in my relationship with food, I would only see food as the culprit, food as the problem, food as my nemesis, food as something I needed to gain control over.

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Relationship with Food Series Part 2: Riding our Bikes Through our Food Stories

I’m so excited to bring you part 2 of our relationship with food series. Last week we talked about getting started on this journey by digging in deep, and noticing where were are when it comes to our relationship with food. I shared what really changed when I decided to look into these issues, and I talked about how every year this is a process of self discovery in which I get to see different sides to it and I continue to heal and make peace with food.

Today’s topic will be a bit shorter than last week’s because most of the work is going to be done by you, at home. Yes, there will be a bit of homework for you, as we’ll probably have in most of the episodes and posts in this series.

One fun little fact about the topic at hand today is that my whole process of healing my relationship with food began with looking into my food stories to share them with you. It was all in an old blog I used to have, and sadly I hadn’t realized (and wouldn’t realize for a while), that those stories were going to mark the beginning of a journey for me.

In fact when I dug into these stories the first time, I could only see the instances in which I was overeating, emotionally eating, sometimes bingeing, and was looking through them as a way to find how on Earth I was going to restrict and eliminate those behaviors through weight loss attempts. I had not yet seen what I told you about last week, that my stories of restricting foods and dieting had been the source of the problem, yet I had ignored them and focused on what I thought the “bad” habits with food were. I hadn’t seen what I know now, that my past history with dieting and restriction had been the cause, not the aftermath of so many of my issues with food. Back then I also hadn’t seen how my stories with body image and feelings toward my body had in many cases preceded my efforts to diet and restrict.

This is why looking at our stories with food and body image, exercise, dieting, emotional eating, etc., are so important when it comes to healing our relationship with food. It’s why today I’m going to ask you to get on a bike and ride next to your food stories and see what you discover.

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Relationship with Food Series Part 1: Acceptance of Who We are and Where We are

As promised a few weeks ago, we’re about to embark upon an adventure through our food stories, exploring our relationship with food. It took me a while to understand that in my own journey with food and cooking, there was another side to my interest in preparing delicious meals. I became a student of cooking when I was around 15 or 16, when I would gobble up all the cooking shows, and watched my uncle (the best cook I’ve ever known) deglaze pans to make elegant French sauces without any pretentious vibes whatsoever. I would study his techniques on everything from making a simple sandwich to the perfect artichokes with hollandaise sauce. I became obsessed. I began collecting recipes, filling up notebook after notebook as I watched The Food Network and when I finally found my chance (especially after I had Carlos to charm and impress), and started spending every bit of free time in the kitchen. What I didn’t know back then was that this thirst for culinary knowledge was also my way of dealing with something I wasn’t aware of at the time: my relationship with food had been tumultuous, it was in pain, and it needed a little support and help. Looking back I know that my interest in food was my way of looking into my relationship with food “without looking into it”, but thank goodness there came a day in which I couldn’t avoid shining a spotlight on it any longer. That was the day things really started to change.

As you probably know if you’re one of our My Brownble members, or you’ve taken any of our cooking courses, my interest in food and cooking never went away, and it’s still one of my favorite parts of the day, but along with developing the skills for tossing onions in a skillet, this has gone hand in hand with looking into and healing my relationship with food. It’s why neither side of this equation is ever missing in our content. One goes along for the ride with the other. We can’t talk about food and cooking without inherently dealing with our relationship with food, and we can’t talk about our relationship with food without talking about the act of eating and the food itself.

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Pre-Summer Body Image Triggers in this Social Media Ad Age and Our Upcoming Series

It’s that time of the year again! We’re right in the beginning of bikini and swim trunk season and as you know if you’ve read this blog and listened to our podcast before, I never leave you hanging during a time in which so many of us struggle with body image issues. That time of year when many of us feel nervous about pool parties, that week at the beach, or the season of shedding all those extra winter layers of clothing that seem to feel safe somehow.

If you’re new, we have a massive source of support and inspiration in our Bikini Revolution Series. Find all the posts here or listen to episodes 29-32 in our podcast. This series was all about the truest source of empowerment. It was about enjoying one of the most fun moments of the year, in which we seem to be able to disconnect and spend time outside, take time off of work, sit in cute terrace cafés, and take relaxing dips in the ocean or pool, no matter what we look like or how big or small our bodies are.

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Celebrating the Little Victories

As I’m sitting in our new extra fluffy terrace chairs (which Vega believes were bought for her to choose and then you could have what’s left over), I wanted us to have a little talk about little victories and how often we’re oblivious to the small little things that scream “progress” but seem to fall on deaf ears. In last week’s episode and post we talked about little magic lessons bread and cheese making has taught me when it comes to making any new changes in our lifestyle. We talked about patience and the waiting game, how you can’t rush what can’t be rushed. We talked about the importance of repetition, planning, breathing room, and this all left me thinking that so often when we’re on this journey to change some of our habits, and especially when it comes to our relationship with food and our bodies, we expect a mountain to be climbed with no notice paid to the little rocks we managed to step over along the way.

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Patience

If you listened to our last episode you probably heard all about the new series we’ll be doing in the blog and podcast. I’ve informally called it the “word” series, from a total lack of imagination on my part, but it’s because I think so much can come with the words that will serve as inspiration for this series of posts and episodes. Just in case you don’t have the slightest idea of what I’m talking about, during our little winter break, which thanks to my vocal cords and never ending cold became a very long winter break, I had a lot of realizations you can hear all about here. It started with some eye opening insights about excess, which will be one of our upcoming episodes, but from there came an avalanche of other creative spurts, all stemming from little words. These powerful little words we use so often without a second thought. Some that define certain aspects of our lives which we might be trying to change, some that can inspire and create great spaces within ourselves, some that can serve as little mantras or guiding lights.

Today’s word as the title suggests is patience. This little one has accompanied me since the start of the year. I told you last week all about the big changes that took place in my life at the beginning of this year, and with it the string of colds, the cough that would never end, the voice that refused to come out when I wanted it to.

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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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