What’s the Cause?

We think that the cause of our issues with food is the actual food.

It’s not.

We think we are either food addicts – or orthorexics – or binge eaters – or compulsive – or have no will power, etc, etc, etc.

That’s not the cause of any of it.

The root of our food issues is actually body issues.

The root is actually our belief that our body is wrong and ugly and needs to be changed.

And the root of our body issues – for the most part – is cultural.

What have we learned about our bodies from the media, advertising campaigns, a 20 billion dollar diet industry, and a biased health care system that is very often funded by drug and diet companies? What have those deeply ingrained systems, that count on your insecurity in order to profit, what have they taught your mothers and grandmothers? What have they taught your friends? What have your grandmothers and mothers and friends and doctors taught you?

We are taught to be deeply fat-phobic – and based on lots of fear mongering and fallacies.

Most of us don’t even know we are fat-phobic – it just is. It feels like a fact that weight and fat is bad and ugly.

It is not a fact. It is learned, and it needs to be unlearned.

Ideally we unlearn it as a society, but that starts with us, individually.

This is why trying to heal your food issues without tackling your extreme feelings about your body will fall short. You must change the way you see weight, fat, and beauty, or you will be stuck in an insecure hell with funky and reactive eating for the rest of your life.

You can’t completely heal your food issues without becoming body positive, and healing your body image.

That is what is underneath the food stuff: Body Stuff. Cultural Body Stuff.

Our moms and grandmoms and friends know not what they do, but we have to be the ones to stop it.


  1. Emily says:

    Yep. I’ve often thought that if it weren’t for fear of what others would see and think, I wouldn’t be as worried about what my body looked like even with its current “extra” 5-10ish pounds. I also wouldn’t be nearly as worried about what I eat if health was truly my goal and not the underlying and persisent fear of gaining weight.
    When I am accepting of my now body, I feel much more sane with food and just more generally peaceful. It’s when the body loathing thoughts start rolling that I start wanting to eat everything.

  2. Maru says:

    This is so f%#-ing important and so overlooked. I wish more experts talked about fat fobia, thin privilege, and all the social / cultural aspects of our fear to get fat and our deep ingrained body hatred…It’s extremely important to promote this message (I don’t know how, but I hope someday I’ll become mainstream), specially among teenage girls and young women. So thanks a lot for this post! 🙂

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