In doing research for my support group last week I came across some interesting information about dieting and what it does to our bodies, minds and feelings towards our body image. I found this information in “The Body Project Tool Kit; The Eating Disorders Action Group”. It solidifies all my reasons for not wanting to be on the diet train any longer.
Here’s some of what struck me most strongly:
People diet for the following reasons: to be thin, to be healthier, to be happier, to fit in, to be more attractive and to be better at sports/activities.
However, despite these noble ideas what really happens when you diet includes many of the following facts:
- Weight loss is often temporary and people often gain the weight lost and more causing a diet cycle which can lead to obesity.
- Diet cycling increases many health risks more then if you hadn’t dieted in the first place and simply maintained a steady heavier weight.
- When diets fail we become unhappy and our self esteem suffers. We are moodier, irritable and we become obsessed with food.
- Many diets oblige you to eat a certain type of food or require you to eat their food thus restricting your activities with friends and family.
- If you are dieting are you fun to be around? Are you going to attract someone simply because you look slim? What happens if you gain some weight back, will that person no longer want to be with you? Is that the kind of person you want to spend your life with?
- When you are dieting your body isn’t working at its peak and you may be losing muscle mass thus not improving your ability to participate in a sport or physical activity.
I think there are many interesting points here to ponder especially if you’re dieting on your own without the help/consent of a doctor and certified nutritionist or dietician. Some people do have to lose weight for health reasons; at risk for heart disease, stroke, diabetes, certain cancers. However, quick fix diets not under the control of a medical professional may make your problems worse in the long run. Check with and discuss fully any health concerns you may have with a health professional.
Hope this helps some curvy girls to know that being chubby doesn’t mean you’re unhealthy or need a diet and in fact you may be healthier then the skinny girl sitting next to you on the bus or the bicycle at the gym. Another reason to Be Pretty, Plus and Proud!