Thoughts on Diet Culture and Identification

Diet culture has become so serious these days that many people base their self worth on how they identify with their eating habits.  For some, it’s practically a religion and like religion you’re likely to hear it in everyday conversation and to be on the receiving end of an attempted conversion.  Like religion, you have most likely either offended someone or have been offended by someone’s diet identification.


What you should ask yourself about the way you eat


Does your diet identification limit your progress?

There are pros and cons to every diet out there. Most of them are similar in that they create a caloric deficit but with a different method to produce said deficit.  Many are also very strict in their dogma and limited in flexibility.

If you, for example, put your kids to bed and realized you’re still hungry and didn’t eat much protein that day, are you allowed to have a protein shake or down a cup of greek yogurt?  If you answered no, because your time window says so, chances are you’ve identified with intermittent fasting but you’ve gone a bit too far down the rabbit hole and you’re missing the point.

You’ve set these hard limits on when you can eat, which is fine in an overall sense, but in this case, you’re going to force yourself to feel hungry because the clock says you’ve missed your window to eat by twenty-seven minutes as you were being a good parent. You’ve also robbed your body of muscle-sparing protein that will help keep you on the gainz-train while you operate in a caloric deficit.

I’m not going to sit here and argue which diet it best or worst. Most of them have merit. I’m just going to suggest that you ask yourself if the way you’re eating matches up to the way you live your life and the demands you’re facing.

Does your kids’ bed-time match up with your feeding-window or should you consider shifting it from what the rules say? Are you allowed to enjoy G-ma’s 97th birthday cake or is she cutting you out of her will because your macro count would be off?


Does your diet match up with your goals?

This will seem like I’m picking on the keto diet but I’m not trying to, really.  I’m picking on the guys who jump into the whole keto thing but say they want to put on slabs of muscle and be all, like, swole bro.

It doesn’t work like that. Eat for your goals. Don’t just pick a diet because it’s popular or because Susan (or Karen, Bryan, Carl or Steve from the office) said it’s the latest diet secret and is, like, totally how we were meant to eat.  And you can have all the cheese you want.

Fuck Susan. Don’t literally do that, unless she’s cool with it, but don’t listen to her. Do some research as to what diet would support the outcome you desire.

If you want to lose weight, maybe keto, IF or some other restrictive diet is for you.

If you desperately want to gain weight, the GOMAD or See-Food diet might be options.

If you want to maximize lean-gains then maybe a more balanced but carb-controlled approach (like the PN plate) is the way to go.

Pick the one that makes sense for your goals and stick with it through Karen’s next 4 diet transformations and you’ll be much further along.


If you stopped eating dessert every day your waist might show it

Real talk: You “treat” yourself too much.  That’s ok, if you understand that fact. Many people would see faster progress by just not eating dessert every day, or being honest that they eat too many baked goods because it’s a Tuesday.

Eat the donuts, cakes, cookies and pies, but recognize it’s going to slow down your weight loss progress if you eat them too often. “Treating” yourself isn’t a daily thing.  The treat comes when it’s saved for special occasions or less often.

Treating yourself daily with donuts is actually just part of your diet and if your diet includes 800 calories of timbits (donuts holes for the non-Canadians) weight loss is going to be a lot slower, and quite likely, non-existent. The truth sucks…

And one final thought, our ancestors didn’t eat sweets and they lived long fulfilling lives to the ripe-old age of 37.. Clearly, we should base our diets around strict guidelines set by what was available in the forest thousands of years ago. (This is called sarcasm for everyone that may have missed it)

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