It’s Not Really a Diet

It’s Not Really a Diet

It’s like a beautiful new landscape; what a breath of fresh air…It’s not really a diet.

“As soon as you stop demonizing certain foods as being off limits, you suddenly feel less addicted to them.” Bethany Doerfler, M.S., R.D.N., clinical dietitian at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. There is a new ‘diet’ in town called the ‘Anti-diet’. Normally I hate the word ‘diet’ attached to anything because it has come to represent: unhealthy styles of eating which involve removing food groups, or eating too much of a food group; it’s creating unhealthy mental associations with food causing people to crave the very food they are trying to avoid, and most diets mess up your metabolism causing more weight gain when you go off the ‘unsustainable’ diets. 

But the ‘Anti-diet’ is the best movement I’ve seen so far. Why? Because it’s not really a ‘diet’ it’s a way of life. No food is off limit and you don’t count calories. There’s no ‘shaming’ involved and it encourages you to eat the foods that make your body feel good, and those are the very foods that are nutritious. It has you focus on eating just to your comfort zone, eating food that makes you feel energised and eating what you’re craving, but not making a whole meal out of that (like a cupcake, or cheese for example). By not denying the foods you crave you take away the mental association that comes with the guilt of eating those foods, or what often happens when you deny yourself those foods, the binge-eating when you finally succumb. Instead, those treats are incorporated in to your day as they should be, as treats and not as ‘meals’. It’s more sustainable because it partners healthy, balanced eating with satisfying your cravings for treats, and supports a healthy mental approach to food.

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