“Diet talk” comes up so often in social situations.
Somehow it weaves its way into conversations, questions, and stories, oftentimes without us even realizing it. Diet talk is sneaky – it comes up when you least expect it. Sometimes it disguises itself as a joke or a compliment. Regardless of how it manifests itself, it is almost never helpful in the road to recovery. That’s why we’re here with tips to help ditch diet talk this year.
Whether you are heading back to school in person for the first time or off to college, we are here to arm you with the tools that you need to ditch diet talk this year.
Recognize Diet Talk
No matter how it slipped into the conversation, the first step to ditching the diet talk is to recognize it.
Here are some examples of comments that you may hear on campus:
- “Don’t let me have a dessert today! I can’t have those things!”
- “I’m not eating x, y, or z because I’m keto now.”
- “I worked out today so I can eat XYZ.”
- “I’m not eating today because I know I’m going to drink tonight.”
- “Wow, you always eat so healthily. I wish I could have that self-control.”
- “We should all go on a diet so we look skinny for spring break!”
While it’s tempting to engage with these comments or validate them, just stop and take a breath and zip your lips! Diet culture talk is filled with comparison to others, shame around certain foods, or rigidity in meals or movement.
How to Get the Topic in Conversations
- Change the subject. Bring up something hilarious that happened last night, or asking about how someone’s classes are going. One of our favorite changes of the subject is, “What happened to (pick a public figure that is no longer in the spotlight)…?”
- Check the facts. You know that diets, restrictions, all that mess doesn’t truly work. Remind yourself of all the work you and your dietitian have done towards recovery. Always free to reach out to your dietitian to check in if you need to.
- Choose your community. If you find that diet talk tends to be a frequent topic, it might be time for a new group to hang out with. Research and try other groups, organizations and clubs that are more in alignment with your values for recovery.
It may be tough at first, but these tips will help you ditch diet talk this year and, ultimately, help you look out for your own wellbeing. This is a crucial step to Eating Disorder recovery or reclaiming your relationship with food and your body.
If you are feeling like you need more support, check out our services and reach out to our team. We are always here to help.
Adrien Paczosa is a Registered and Licensed Dietitian practicing in Austin, Texas and the surrounding counties.
She is the owner and founder of I Live Well Nutrition her Dietitian practice which started in 2007 and serves clients in the Austin, Texas area in two locations. Fearless Practitioners, the division of her business that offers training to dietitians and wellness professionals.