My Unhealthy Relationship with Healthy Living

A detailed reflection on my life as a "healthy-living blogger" and how diet culture influenced my eating and exercise habits.

My Unhealthy Relationship with Healthy Living
Photo by Iga Palacz / Unsplash
Important Update (2023):

Since writing this post in 2018, my outlook on diet and fitness has changed significantly. I've reflected even more on my 'healthy' habits over the past decade and realized that I was definitely a victim of diet culture and still was when I wrote this post. In fact, I still am today, and I'm still working on it. In this post, I talk about counting Macros, consuming ‘everything in moderation,’ and associating good/bad feelings with the number on the scale. I don't do that anymore.

I have realized more and more how much I've participated in and promoted disordered eating habits through this blog and on Instagram, as well as directly to my friends and family. For that, I am truly sorry. Things like not allowing myself to eat Doritos or Oreos or drink soda because of the ingredient list or because I deemed those foods/drinks as 'bad.' I'm slowly rediscovering foods I loved as a kid and finding that once I actually let myself eat them, I don't crave them as much anymore.

Since writing this post, I've come a long way in finding food freedom and challenging the strict food rules I have followed for so long. I thought about deleting this post entirely but decided that would be disingenuous. I hope you'll read it with this update in mind.

Content Note:

I talk a lot about my guilt surrounding eating, counting calories, and not being happy about my weight. If any of that is upsetting or triggering for you, I suggest skipping this post. I hope that those of you who do read this post all the way through understand that I am not in any way commenting on anyone else's way of living. Everyone's story is different, and this happens to be mine.

Recently I was looking through some old pictures and came across a few of myself that really made me stop and take a second look. It's really interesting how we judge ourselves and our bodies at certain points in our lives and then see something completely different when we look back at photos several years later.

It's incredibly humbling to look back at photos of myself when I thought I was in really good shape to find that I was actually alarmingly skinny.

Body Image

Similarly, to look back at photos of myself as a teen when I thought I was fat but was, in fact, a perfectly ‘normal’ weight is completely eye-opening.

Body Image

Body image is something I've struggled with since I was a preteen. I distinctly remember sitting in the passenger seat of my parent's car when I was in sixth or seventh grade and asking my mother if my thighs were fat. It was something that had never occurred to me before that moment, but suddenly I felt incredibly insecure and worried that my legs were just a little bit larger than the other girls at school.