Meet The Nutritionist Who’s Killing Christmas Food Guilt
Tis the season to be jolly and not feel awful about eating festive food.
Mince pie. Booze. Sleep. Repeat. Sound familiar? From family gatherings to office Christmas parties, December is packed with delicious seasonal snacks and festive meals. But while many magazines and media are bombarding us with messages about the calories in our ‘guilty pleasures’ and how to drop post-Christmas pounds, nutritionist Laura Thomas has a different approach.
Let Munroe Bergdorf teach you how to block out negative voices.
Laura is sharing truth bombs on Instagram with her ‘Non-Diet Advent Calendar’ – a daily takedown of diet culture and reminder of how it’s totally cool to eat what you want.
What's diet culture, you say? "Diet culture is really anything that promotes the thin ideal/aesthetic as being the 'best' type of body," says Laura.
"You wouldn't be mad at a dalmatian for being bigger than a pug. No way, you'd be up for snuggles with either. The second problem of diet culture is that it normalises disordered eating, which in and of itself is an issue. But disordered eating can be a slippery slope to a full blown eating disorder in people who are predisposed or at risk. "
Laura’s approach to nutrition is all about intuitive eating – that’s eating according to your own hunger cues rather than counting calories or macros – and she has a PhD in Nutritional Sciences, so she really knows her stuff. “Eating is a fundamental requirement for life,” she shares. “You would not feel guilty about breathing or sleeping. You should never, ever feel bad about nourishing your body and soul with satisfying and delicious foods that help keep body and mind happy.”
"As a Registered Nutritionist it's my job to help end stigma towards people in larger bodies and to help prevent eating disorders and disordered eating, which is why I decided to make the non-diet advent calendar. A lot of 'health tips' at this time of year really just breed diet mentality and disordered eating, so I wanted to provide people with a safe, non-diet space which would help give them some reassurance and support at an otherwise stressful time of year. A lot of my followers feel anxiety around food and I wanted to help them chill so they can focus on enjoying the holidays instead of freaking out about food."
"In the calendar we'll be discussing why sometimes you eat more than other times (especially when something tastes freaking delicious) and why that doesn't make you a bad person and why you definitely shouldn't feel guilty about it. We also talk about how food guilt is a product of diet culture and why you should never, ever feel guilty about food. We'll also be discussing body image issues at this time of year, and how to help break the binge/restrict cycle, and how to deal with 'diet talk' from friends and relatives!"
“If feelings of guilt, shame or anxiety creep in, remind yourself those are not your feelings, they were given to you by a culture that preys on your insecurities and vulnerabilities and you are not going to let diet culture walk all over you.”
So if you’re getting your Quality Street 5-a-day on top of your fruit and veg one this season, don’t panic – it’s totally normal and beating yourself up over it is 100% not worth your time.