Two weeks ago I shared with you my story and my somewhat oscillating relationship with my weight. I thought I’d feel vulnerable and silly, but I felt empowered by all the feedback I received. Guys, we all have this questions at the backs of our minds, regardless whether we’re a XS, a M or a XL size. We all want to feel good and look good and be happy with ourselves. It is ironic that we’re our biggest enemies in the process of attaining all this, decent number of kilos included.
No more blah blah, let’s debunk together all the lies we tell ourselves. First of all, I would advise you to read this article on nutrition and get an overview on my food philosophy. If you do want to lose weight, you need to approach the change lightly, with an open mind and with an open heart. Not as a challenge, not as a chore, not as a thing you need to conquer. This will set you for failure. You need to think long term, you need to consider your overall energy and mood first and then the number of kilos. But, I’m not gonna be one of these zen-mindful-spiritual people and give you a bunch of bullshit about inner beauty, it is about losing your extra kilos, of course. But please, please!, think of this as a side-effect, not as the end-game alone. One by one, here we go: Read More
I believe, without doubt, that most of us have had some weight-related questions or issues at some point in our lives. The relation between weight and other aspects is clear: health, self-esteem, relationship building, group dynamics. Weight has an impact even on our professional lives: overweight candidates are judged less competent than fit candidates. A halo effect and a recruitment bias. So yes, weight is front and center in our modern world. I’ve explored the relation between body image, external stimuli, perception and weight loss before. Us women are the harshest judges of weight in relation to beauty and we are also judged negatively by both men and other women for being overweight. I was a twiggy kid, grew up into a lanky adolescent and enter the adulthood as a skinny young woman. Some people complimented my figure, others raised their concerns and some were simply making fun. But I wasn’t meant to go through life with a slender body, not at all! I had a few challenges and road bumps. The first one was when I moved to the US and I put on weight. A lot of weight, enough said. I was in my early twenties, so I was able to quickly shove it off when I came back to Europe and to a normal diet. The second milestone was when I moved to Belgium. I discovered the Belgian beers, the fritjes, the bricky burger eaten at 3 in the morning to try to drench the alcohol vapors in fat. I was a (poor) Eastern European student, so I was not able to afford good foods, I ate a lot of crap. I cared more about partying and classes than I cared about what I ate. I lived in a student dorm and I shared a kitchen and a fridge with an entire floor. All kind of excuses associated with that stage of life. The road to FAT-Ville also continued after I graduated, got a well-paid job and wasn’t poor anymore. I wanted to compensate and I started eating a lot. Good foods, all cooked by me, but LOTS. And I put on weight again. 10 kilos, to be precise. That’s when I started being heavily interested in nutrition and it’s impact on our bodies, and not only in recipes and cooking amazing dishes. I went through different stages, questioning, reading, doing research…the works. That was 7 years ago. I realized that we are our biggest enemies in the process of losing weight. All our preconceived ideas about losing weight. All the crap we tell ourselves.
Let’s be honest here! Food trends come and go, but there’s one component that was always part of the game: looking good…which, in our western culture, translates into being slim. Or skinny. There was a subtle shift a couple of years ago, when all women magazines (yes, that’s my hidden pleasure, put it to rest now!) have started moving from advice on losing weight and being slim to being “in shape” and “glowy” and, finally, to being “healthy”. And it’s not just women, men face the same issues. They are more and more interested in the way they look (some have even started plucking their eyebrows…WHY? OH WHY???)(Sorry, couldn’t help it!). We’re all in the same fucked-up boat!