Everyone is welcome on the Food Peace Journey and when I say everyone I include those of you with diabetes. Public opinion likes to eliminate intuitive eating with a diabetes diagnosis yet what if moving away from diets promotes health and better blood sugars? Listen up for this week’s episode from someone just diagnosed with diabetes.
This episode of The Love Food Podcast is brought to you by my Pop Up PCOS Podcast—Live only through the month of April.
It focuses on how to live with and manage PCOS cravings. Get access to this private podcast here.
Thank you for you supporting the Love Food Podcast!
We’ve never been friends, you and I. You lurked in the center of a labyrinth of Rules, the monster but also the prize. The Rules were supposed to guarantee good health as evidenced by a good body, and for “good” read “thin.” But I didn’t have a thin body. I had a big body. A fat body. A wrong body. A must-be-unhealthy body. A body that required regulation according to external rules since I was obviously incapable of regulating myself. The only thing about my body that mattered was my weight and my weight was always too much.
You were rarely flavor but always components: sugar, protein, fat, carbs. You came only at meals and meals happened only at assigned times. Hunger that happened outside those times wasn’t real. My body lies because I’m fat.
I enjoyed swimming and bicycling and roller skating, but movement for fun was worthless. Movement meant losing weight. Movement was punishment for being fat, and punishment had to hurt. I quit all the activities I liked and convinced myself they were never fun to begin with.
You were my enemy, food. You were the cause of everything that went wrong. Unless I got smaller I was going to die, and soon. If only I could get my food right then my body would become right, become thin, and then I could start my life.
Instead of living, I spent a lifetime avoiding you. My list of acceptable foods grew shorter and shorter. The amounts I allowed grew smaller and smaller. Meanwhile, my body got bigger and bigger.
Eventually, I discovered HAES and intuitive eating, and tried to repair my damaged relationship with you and my body. I ditched the constant analysis. It never made me feel good. I tried to think of you in terms of taste and flavor. If I ate enough of you overall, listened to and honored my body, everything would sort out. I felt better, physically and mentally. I am still fat and working on being ok with that. Because HAES, right?
There’s always a “but,” isn’t there?
Barely a year after finding what felt like salvation, I developed diabetes.
I’m devastated. I’m angry. I feel betrayed. No more HAES; I don’t have health. Goodbye intuitive eating; my fat body lies. No more thinking about you in terms of flavors and taste and what sounds good. Back to The Rules. You are components, not flavors. Exercise and movement isn’t for fun, it’s to use up blood sugars.
I was wrong about my body and everyone else was right. I must accept reality and impose Rules to discipline my body and make it good. And by good, they mean thin. They replaced numbers on the scale and clothes sizes with A1c and fasting blood glucose. If my numbers aren’t good enough I will die, for real this time.
I’m afraid to buy a glucose meter. I would use it as a scourge, not as a tool. Hungry? No eating unless the meter says so. Blood sugar rises? Never eat that again. I know where this story ends. Surviving on black coffee and cabbage while still being the object lesson for eating too much cake. I’ve been there before. I don’t want to live there again. I’m back to obsessing about you and trying to make our relationship Stepford Wives perfect and I’m miserable.
Engaging the topics of diet and exercise at all feels like grabbing a live wire with both hands. Yet I’m told I must grab and hold tightly or I will die. I want to let go. But I want to take care of my body too.
How do I balance the requirement to dissect everything I eat into its component parts and assemble them into perfect plates without ending up back where I started? I hear the siren call and it is hard to resist, especially with doctors rowing my boat that direction.
Please help me find a better way.
- Julie Dillon RD blog
- The PCOS + Food Peace Free Roadmap
- The PCOS + Food Peace Course
- Link to get latest Food Peace Syllabus.
- 6 Keys To Food Peace
- Submit your Dear Food letter here or https://forms.gle/pepKRGPC8JbHLHHn8
- Julie on Instagram: Instagram.com/FoodPeaceDietitian
- Find Eating Disorder Dietitians near you.
Do you have a complicated relationship with food? I want to help! Send your Dear Food letter to LoveFoodPodcast@gmail.com.