How to Form a Non-Diet Bubble
Note: Some links contained in this post are affiliate links. All opinons are my own. Happy Wednesday, friends! I hope you're having a good week. If you haven't done so, make sure you sign up for the newsletter! The first edition will be coming out this Friday!!
Around this time last year I spent a few weeks forming my own non-diet bubble. I stopped following people, pages, and accounts that made me anxious about my food choices, body and practices as a dietitian. I set up boundaries for myself. I knew if I was still going to participate in social media (and the internet in general), I needed to change what I was seeing. Since our culture spreads diet messages like wildfire, it can be helpful to intentionally create a space that counteracts those messages.
As we start rejecting diet culture, we need to seek out information that is helpful, not harmful. Surrounding yourself with positive messages and people can help you through the process. If you think about how much we actually consume throughout one day, it's pretty shocking. Between social media, Netflix, email, news etc, we're constantly consuming information. Just like we monitor and protect children from harmful messages, we should watch what we're seeing too. We're not sponges, so we don't have to let negative messages soak in, but they're easier to fight if we don't have to see them 24/7. Below are a few places to start when forming your own "non-diet bubble."
Social media Fill your feed with non-food accounts. Add puppies, home decor, crafts, encouraging words, nature, etc. Figure out what interests you besides food and explore that. Once we let go of food rules, and the diet mentality we have SO much more free time and mental space to do other activities. Find something that fills you up and pursue it.
Hashtags If you still want to include food and health accounts try #intuitiveeating, #healthateverysize, #bodykindness, #bodyrespect, #nondiet, #rejectthedietmentality. These hashtags will link you to lots of different accounts where dietitians and other health professionals are sharing positive messages. Use caution though, sometimes people use hashtags that don't fit the content.
Podcasts There are tons of options out there for any interest you may have. Some of my current favorites are non-diet dietitians (The Mindful Dietitian, Love, Food, The Body Love Project, Body Kindness, Nutrition Matters, RD Real Talk, Food Psych), church sermons (Veritas Columbus, The Porch, Gospel In Life, John Piper Sermons-Desiring God) and entrepreneurial podcasts (Food Blogger Pro, How I Built This).
Books Check out the resources page for some of my recommendations on getting started with a non-diet lifestyle. A few books I have on my "to read" list are: Letting Go of Leo by Simi Botic, Grace Not Perfection by Emily Ley, A simplified life by Emily Ley, and Braving the Wilderness by Brene Brown.
The resources above can definitely help us move away from diet culture into a more positive and helpful space, but the best thing that you can do for yourself is to take a break from constantly consuming messages, even positive ones. Take a walk without your phone, eat a meal outside, call a good friend or family member. We don't give ourselves enough time to just be, and let our minds wander.
By putting ourselves a cozy little bubble, it's easy to forget about those who aren't in that space. It's not an exclusive club so we should be actively inviting others inside. Maybe you have friends or family members who also need to hear these messages. Even though we're not participating in diet culture, we should try to have compassion for those that are still in that mentality.