Saying yes to food

When people diet (or otherwise restrict their food), they tend to define themselves by what they don't eat. No meat. No dairy. No wheat. No fat. No taste (haha).

And I think that's interesting. When I was deeply anorexic, I related to that a lot. I would eat anything- as long as it didn't have calories! It's even become a cultural phenomenon. There's a book called "What not to eat."

People aren't stupid. They know they're missing out on things. And dieting=deprivation, however you define diet.

Think about it: you're defining your diet by what isn't in it. This doesn't apply to someone with allergies, of course. They literally have to define their diets (in part) by what they can't eat. But the rest of us have so much more freedom.

When you restrict your food, you restrict your life, and that's what our culture seems to be doing. We're so afraid of what might be (in our food, in our lives) that we start to miss out.

On the blog Vanilla Garlic, Garrett had this to say about the bizarre food requests received by friends:

Really, I don't mind cooking around allergies, likes, dislikes, health problems, and religious or moral viewpoints. I'm not going to serve a ham sammich with tomatoes to a practicing Muslim who gags at the thought of a sliced tomato touching their food. I will not however cook for someone who sits down and says they are on the Atkins for the next three days and can't eat the salad I made (insisting on near-raw hamburger instead), or the vegan eating a cheese bagel because "They're just too good to give up."

I think it comes down to starting to say yes instead of no. What are you going to eat today? What will you choose to include in your diet, in your life? Even if what you eat doesn't change, your mentality might.

What do you think? What are you going to say yes to today?

posted under , , |


Lisa said...

I will say yes to a few more Reese's Pieces. I forgot how tasty they are.

emmy. said...

If there's food in front of me, I typically say yes to it. I've even been trying hard to try new things that I wouldn't usually try. I've even been retrying things that I've tried and didn't like in the past. Taste-buds change! Although, I've given up on olives.. I've tried them like, 5 times. Still a no-go.

Even when I was sick, I didn't really have any "fear foods". I just avoided food in general.

That's such a good point, though. No one seems to define what they eat by what they eat. It's always what they can't eat. It's almost like they'd rather people know what they have the "strength" to avoid. Food shouldn't be something we avoid. Any kind. Unless it's actually dangerous, of course.. like raw meat. Ew.

Carrie Arnold said...

Personally, I said yes to french vanilla Eggos this morning- with peanut butter and banana on top. :)


You're right- refusing food has a sort of moral ring to it anymore, and people are almost indubitably impressed by willingly excluding food groups from your diet.

And I hear you about olives. That and cauliflower are the only two foods I absolutely WILL NOT eat.

Laura Collins said...

There is a theory out there - and it resonates to me - that combining restrictive eating and a moral reasoning turns on an instinctive drive that is hard to turn off.

Post a Comment

Newer Post Older Post Home

ED Bites on Facebook!

ED Bites is on Twitter!

Search ED Bites

About Me

My photo
I'm a science writer, a jewelry design artist, a bookworm, a complete geek, and mom to a wonderful kitty. I am also recovering from a decade-plus battle with anorexia nervosa. I believe that complete recovery is possible, and that the first step along that path is full nutrition.

Drop me a line!

Have any questions or comments about this blog? Feel free to email me at

nour·ish: (v); to sustain with food or nutriment; supply with what is necessary for life, health, and growth; to cherish, foster, keep alive; to strengthen, build up, or promote


Popular Posts


Recent Comments