Content notice: eating disorder
They call it a ‘gut feeling’ for a reason…
Should we be forced to sacrifice our mental health for physical?
Do we really want our daughters to grow up thinking they’re not good enough because of their size?
It’s not fat sex. It’s just SEX. Human sex.
My size is always weighed over my qualifications.
It’s never been more obvious that with age comes wisdom…
Ever been on a diet, lost the weight and then put it back on? This has to do with conditioning; a type of learning that occurs, which dictates how we behave. If you want more control over your weight; learning about conditioning is better than any diet, you will ever try.
What is conditioning?
Conditioning is the basis of how we learn to behave. This includes our habits, which cause us to be the weight we are. Three types of conditioning have been identified; classical, operant and observational. Each plays a vital role in controlling weight gain and loss.
Learning via association. For example: have you ever been to movies and headed straight to the snack bar for some popcorn, even though you aren’t hungry? That’s classical conditioning at work. In many people’s minds, they associate a trip to the movies with popcorn or a snack, while they relax and enjoy a movie.
For people wanting more control over their weight, they need to be aware of conditioning which pre-exists for them, about food and exercise. As an example; if you consume your nightly meal on the lounge, in front of the TV (as many people do); each time you sit down to watch TV, there is a greater chance of you associating this activity, with eating. This is why it’s recommended that you find a designated place to eat; like at the dinner table. This reduces the likelihood of eating in front of the TV at night.
Some people also find that they eat when they experience different moods or physical states; such as being tired, anxious, confused or worried. Eating, is therefore, a coping mechanism. From past experience, food made them feel better and it becomes a viable solution, each time they experience this feeling. The only way to cease it, is to identify, acknowledge and change these types of associations.
Learning via consequences. For all behaviours, we are either rewarded or punished. Rewards encourage us to increase a behaviour, while punishment reduces it. These can be added or removed. For example; when we diet, we are usually rewarded with removal of weight. However, when we gain weight, we are punished by addition of weight.
Rewards and punishments, encourage which behaviours to choose. Sometimes the punishment of weight gain, isn’t enough to deter, increased weight gain. Perhaps the reward of consuming particular foods, overrides the compulsion to avoid the punishment of excessive weight gain.
Learning via observing others. For example; large people usually have large family members. Sure, genetics comes into play, but learning and adapting the habits of parents is much greater. Children are like sponges, absorbing a significant amount of knowledge from their role models. If their role models are healthy and active; they will likely, be so too.
By the time kids reach adulthood, they have learned a great deal from mere exposure. For example; if you take the kids shopping, be aware, they are learning what types of foods to put into the trolley. Even if it appears they aren’t really paying attention; repetition and exposure is teaching them. This is primarily where most habits begin.
Lastly, when you become fully aware of the roll food and exercise plays in your life, long term weight control can be achieved. Ask yourself these 6 vital questions and you will be well on your way.
- Why are you eating?
- When are you eating?
- Where are you eating?
- What are you eating?
- Who’s watching you eat?
- Exercise… pleasure, pain, chore or choice?
By Kim Chartres
Our biggest enemies when it comes to losing weight? Fat and sugar. While it is relatively easy to control your fat intake, doing the same with sugar is a different story. You might be thinking that you don’t eat a lot of sugar because you stay away from sweets and sodas. Well, I am sorry to disappoint you, but the sweet white weight-loss enemy, often hidden as a word ending in ‘-ose’ (lactose, glucose, etc) can be found in pretty much every food nowadays.
From sauces to fruits and everything with the label ‘low fat’, sugar is the food industry’s favourite ingredient to create flavour and make you come back for more.
Remember, females should eat no more than 6tsp of sugar a day and men no more than 9tsp.
If you are serious about eating less sugar or even quitting sugar altogether, here is a list of hidden sugar foods:
Off-the-shelf smoothies: You know those healthy looking fruit smoothies that you can buy at any supermarket nowadays? Some of them contain up to 7tsp of sugar! Better make your own.
Fruit yoghurt: Ever wondered why yoghurt makes for such a great dessert? Because it is very, very sweet with most fruit yoghurts containing between 5 and 7tsp of sugar, especially low-fat versions, in which fat is substituted by sugar.
Breakfast cereal: There are the healthier all bran versions that aren’t that bad, but most breakfast cereal is loaded with sugar to make it tastier and give you that quick energy kick (that doesn’t last) in the morning. A 100g portion can have up to 8tsp of sugar!
Bread: Stay away from white bread as it contains up to 1tsp of sugar per slice! Instead, opt for wholemeal bread which will make you feel full for much longer.
Salad dressings: If you think you’re being healthy by eating salads for lunch, you’re only right if you choose the right dressing. Most popular bottled dressings contain sugar, and lots of it! A generous portion size can easily contain a whole tsp.
Bananas: It is still better to eat a banana than choose a chocolate bar but, unfortunately, bananas are the type of fruit that contain lots of carbs and up to 4tsp of sugar per fruit (depending on the size). Opt for berries instead.
Image via womenshealthmag.com
When I first heard that Aussie top model Robyn Lawley was featured in this year’s famous Sports Illustrated swimwear issue, I was really excited. But when I saw that nearly every article about it called her the first ‘plus size model’ to be featured in the magazine, my excitement turned into frustration, especially after seeing the actual pictures that made it into the issue.
Here’s the thing: It is no secret that Robyn Lawley is curvier than the average fashion model and while it is great that she is as successful as she is in a world of size 0 models, the problem is the fact that a fit, healthy woman that is 183cm tall and wears a size 10-12 is called “plus-size”. Not only is Robyn Lawley’s weight perfectly normal and healthy for a woman her height, but she also looks fit and slim in the pictures that made it into the Sports Illustrated issue. Her stomach is flat, her arms are toned, she even has a visible thigh gap! There are no bulges in sight whatsoever.
So I am asking this: What kind of message is sent to young, impressionable girls if we call a beautiful, fit woman with a perfect bikini body ‘plus sized’? We are basically telling them that you have to be a size 6-8 in order to be “normal sized”, and if you want to be called skinny, good luck, you have to fit in sizes that belong in the children’s section. It’s a beauty standard that is hard to achieve and maintain if you are over the age of 13.
Robyn Lawley herself has said that she finds it “ludicrous” to be called plus-sized and that the Sports Illustrated team has never referred to her as that. So, as so often, it comes down to the media labelling someone in a way they shouldn’t. Robyn Lawley isn’t the only one struggling with the category ‘plus size’. Model Myla Dalbesio experienced the same media coverage when she starred in a Calvin Klein underwear campaign last year, now she writes about her experiences in her own column here.
It’s time that we stop labelling models as too skinny, too fat, plus size, normal size, and focus on beauty regardless of numbers on scales.
images via si.com
Social media went into a frenzy over the weekend as ‘unretouched’ images of Cindy Crawford surfaced from a three-year-old shoot the model did for Marie Claire magazine in the US.
The photographs of the 49-year-old mother-of-two went viral after being leaked on Twitter and showed the ’90s supermodel to have the lumps and bumps that the majority of middle-aged mums have on their bodies.
SHOCK HORROR! Cindy Crawford is human! The fact that the internet went with images only goes to show how desensitised we are to heavily photoshopped images bombarding us at every turn.
The fact that a relatively normal, yet still quite stunning, human being has some cellulite and a little padding is shocking to us is reveals an interesting swing.
It is the honest depiction of women that is shocking to us. We are no longer up in arms about heavily retouched images and the portrayal of ‘perfect’ female forms. But the exact opposite.
In a world where teenage girls can photoshop or ‘facetune’ their own selfies, it seems nobody wants to expose or see ‘real’ images – where does that leave the unreal expectations that all women and girls are now subject to?
Where do you see this unreal perception of women heading? Tell us your thoughts.