Nothing tastes as good as....Being YOU!!....

Most of us women, thanks to Pinterest, have heard the expression "Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels"....But do you know where the origin of that expression actually came from? I'll give you a's NOT from a positive body inspiration pin board!....Actually, the phrase originated from a model by the name of Kate Moss during an interview with Women's Wear Daily back in 2009. For those of you a bit younger, Kate Moss was a very famous model who peaked in the 90s with her waif-ish appearance and size zero fashion. She was part of the 'heroin chic' fashion trend and has admitted to drug use in the past during her modeling career.

Thanks to sites such as Tumblr and Pinterest, there are many ways to stumble upon pro-eating disorder support groups and boards that taut mottos such as these for their 'thin-spiration' mindsets.

First of all, many rational thinkers would and should ask themselves, "well, exactly what does skinny FEELS like anyway?"....Who really thinks they can truly answer that question? How many answers would actually end up being positive? Most would say they want to be skinny or skinny-ER, for reasons we aren't even sure of but we know they exist because mainstream society tells us they do every day, every hour. How subjective is this? Does it mean "thin" or "look good or better than I do now?"

Does skinny ever feel good, like no one will ever judge you because you finally made yourself into exactly what you (or society) wants you to be? Or does skinny feel empty on the inside, like you can never eat to enjoy again for fear of losing it all? Does it feel beautiful to any, like the only way anyone thinks you're worth anything is if they see your rib cage? For the ones that have never struggled with weight gain at all, does it feel great? Or does it feel like a huge burden, like you will forever be judged when you eat an ice cream sandwich?

As a dietitian, some people have definitely peeked into my shopping cart at the store when they find out what I do for a living. Most would be surprised at the variety of things I purchase, whether it be something sweet, something veggie, something starchy. One time, I was eating at a local gourmet hot dog establishment with my family, and a former coworker came up to me as I was eating and exclaimed "I didn't think this place would be 'dietitian-approved'" as she eyed my hot dog on my plate. I just smiled and laughed and said "everything in moderation, right?" first it pissed me off, but then, as I thought about it more, I realized how sad she must feel inside herself. Because if she felt the need to point out what I was eating wasn't exactly healthy, I couldn't imagine the battle she must have with herself daily, because, cockily I think, I KNOW how to meal plan, I went to school for this and obtained a 4 year degree, and lost souls such as that don't have the inside knowledge I do to know how to balance it all out. Pompous on my part, maybe? But comically, we were both eating at the same place and presumably the same food, so if it were me that went up to her and said "NOT DIETITIAN APPROVED!!", I'm sure she would be truly embarrassed.

My daughter, who is almost 6 years old, enjoys a Happy Meal every now and then. And she's the daughter of a registered dietitian!! She came home from school one day and said that one of her friends said her mom said that Happy Meals are poisonous. I simply stated to her that all foods that we are able to legally purchased aren't technically poisonous and that it is perfectly fine to enjoy fast food every now and again. What I didn't tell her is my much more complex philosophy of how, when her friend who isn't allowed to grow up eating any fast food may just very well go completely insane when she gets to college or anywhere else and lives on her own. I've known people that have done just that. They were deprived/restricted all their lives of something under their parents roofs and when they finally make it out in the world, it's just sensory overload. For some, it would be alcohol or drugs. For others, foods, or more specifically, certain types of foods like fast food. For ones raised vegan, it's meat all the way, followed by dairy and everything else they can get their binge-y hands on. So, my philosophy is, if you expose your children to things and allow them to have those things on occasion, they won't go completely out of control when it's them that are making their own choices in life. If my daughter is allowed to eat a Happy Meal when she's younger on occasion, chances are she may not drive up one day and order a #1 meal every day for a month. Not to say that it can't happen, but in my experience with research and education on this very topic of deprivation v/s allowance, it lowers the odds tremendously.

So, as I am trying to be a positive role model for the community as well as to my young daughter about body image, food, weight and healthy lifestyle issues, I say that skinny must feel like being a failure. Let's face it, skinny will always feel like wanting to be skinnier. It will never feel like looking as good as someone you admire from Hollywood, etc. Skinny feels like looking in the mirror and not feeling good enough about anything. So what can we do to try to change this? Start by making peace with yourself, right here, right now. The second you can let go of trying to compare yourself to anyone, you lose. So does anyone around you that looks up to you. If someone sees you as a role model and you are too busy trying to look like or be someone else, what do you think your young impressionable one will end up doing? The exact same thing as you do to yourself. Break the cycle. Sure, we will all have days that we feel 'less than perfect' for ourselves or feel like you gained 5 lbs overnight but guess what? That younger one won't know if you don't point it out to them or say it out loud to anyone. We all may be in need of an inner peace makeover, but if you can at least make peace with your body and keep it moving in some form daily, eating as healthy as you can daily and still allow some time to be a fun, happy person for your family and yourself, you will start to see yourself become more happy and at peace with yourself. It wont happen overnight, but it will happen. Piece by piece, you will begin to feel whole and that will allow you to be more to everyone around you in a positive way.....Have Peace with yourself, Be kind to yourself first, then to others and stay true to the things that you believe in.

Katie Green, below, a former Ultimo model, who launched the Say No To Size Zero campaign

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