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Avoiding the sugar spikes helps you maintain good energy levels throughout the day and may help reduce the risk of Type 2 diabetes. Small changes really do add up, and voting with your dollar is a good way to help build a better food system. Cook from scratch when you can. Nutritionists have long advocated home cooking as a way to improve health.


Recent research supports the recommendation to cook at home: In a study of nearly 10, adults, those who more frequently cooked dinner at home had better-quality diets overall than those who cooked less regardless of whether they were trying to lose weight. Whether you're heading home after a long night out, trying to fall asleep after binge-watching something scary, or just hungry after a sub-satisfying. When an ingredient is dubbed a superfood, included in probiotic supplements, supported by Goop, found in some skincare products, and has a cute name, you.

In , "keto" was the top trending diet on Google, so it's no surprise that many health brands are now marketing packaged snacks with words like "keto. The company changed its. Brain food for studying. Drunk munchies for late nights. Easy breakfasts for 8 a. Eventually, I will pry them apart. Most days, I feel good in my skin. I think loving our bodies is not only an unrealistic goal in our appearance-obsessed society but also a limiting one. No one is telling men that they need to love their bodies to live full and meaningful lives.

The diet industry is a virus, and viruses are smart.

What happens to your brain when you go on a diet

In , dieting presents itself as wellness and clean eating, duping modern feminists to participate under the guise of health. Wellness influencers attract sponsorships and hundreds of thousands of followers on Instagram by tying before and after selfies to inspiring narratives.

Go from sluggish to vibrant, insecure to confident, foggy-brained to cleareyed. I was my sickest and loneliest when I appeared my healthiest. If these wellness influencers really cared about health, they might tell you that yo-yo dieting in women may increase their risk for heart disease, according to a recent preliminary study presented to the American Heart Association. They might also promote behaviors that increase community and connection, like going out to a meal with a friend or joining a book club.

These activities are sustainable and have been scientifically linked to improved health, yet are often at odds with the solitary, draining work of trying to micromanage every bite of food that goes into your mouth. The wellness industry is the diet industry, and the diet industry is a function of the patriarchal beauty standard under which women either punish themselves to become smaller or are punished for failing to comply, and the stress of this hurts our health too.

I am a thin white woman, and the shame and derision I have experienced for failing to be even thinner is nothing compared with what women in less compliant bodies bear. Wellness is a largely white, privileged enterprise catering to largely white, privileged, already thin and able-bodied women, promoting exercise only they have the time to do and Tuscan kale only they have the resources to buy.

Finally, wellness also contributes to the insulting cultural subtext that women cannot be trusted to make decisions when it comes to our own bodies, even when it comes to nourishing them. We cannot push to eradicate the harassment, abuse and oppression of women while continuing to serve a system that demands we hurt ourselves to be more attractive and less threatening to men.

And yet that is exactly what we are doing when we sit around the lunch table and call our stomachs horror shows. There is something called the Bechdel test for film.

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Beyond hunger cues, eating disorders can do damage to our brains in a number of ways. Our neurotransmitters, brain structures, reward circuitry, gray and white matter, emotional centers, and much more are all impacted by disordered eating. And all those emotions that came rushing back when I started treatment?

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We live in a culture that applauds dieting and exercise, unapologetically loathes fat bodies, and only seems to view food in a very binary way: good or bad, healthy or junk food, low or high, light or dense. In our culture, disordered eating — at least on the surface — is lauded as an accomplishment. We humans have a tendency to stick to what feels safe. Our eating disorder was a coping mechanism that worked at one point. So when we begin our recoveries, we are wrestling with a brain that has primed us to experience food as, quite literally, dangerous.

Eating Myself Crazy: How I Made Peace with Food by Treena Wynes

So the next time you see someone struggling with food? As a journalist and media strategist, Sam has published extensively on topics like mental health, transgender identity, disability, politics and law, and much more. Bringing his combined expertise in public health and digital media, Sam currently works as social editor at Healthline.

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Social media is a place where marginalized users can put themselves first. The KonMari method becomes an important reminder of how to do this.