The link between the ballet world and eating disorders is fairly well known— articles about problematic and harmful practices are in abundance. Several clients have told me how ballet directly contributed the onset of their ED (be it due to body image issues, themes of perfectionism, weight/shape bias in the professional sphere, and so on). Suffice to say, for some folks living with an eating disorder, ballet has painful and/or harmful association. This got me thinking: what can we, as folks in the “eating disorder world”, do to facilitate re-claiming ballet?
International No Diet Day
Image Credit: UnSplash
Body image is such a sensitive topic, sure it's covered in school and we are told to embrace our bodies and love ourselves for who we are, but then we are bombarded with all this social media. Tabloids are telling us what the ideal body is and what is considered fit, healthy, and attractive… and if you do not have those traits or qualities then we are not beautiful. The past few years I have been struggling with body image.
Here at the National Eating Disorder Information Centre, we are not only mandated to share information about eating disorders.. It is also our responsibility to provide information and resources about body image and food and weight preoccupation. That’s why days like tomorrow are so important to us.
May 6th is International No Diet Day. It is a day for organizations and individuals to push back against the industries and messages that encourage us to engage in dangerous dieting behaviours.
Author: Dr. Linda Bacon
Dieting. It’s so seductive. It gives us hope, the promise of weight loss and happiness. But, by now you know it just doesn’t deliver. (If your personal experience isn’t enough to convince you, review my post during NEDIC’s 2015 International No Diet Day campaign: Diets. Don't. Work. Body Trust Does.)
I offer this post in honour of International No Diet Day
Diets. Don’t. Work. Even when we call them a “lifestyle change.” For so, so many reasons. But here’s one to consider. A diet provides you with rules about what you’re supposed to eat or not eat. Attempts to control your food intake through willpower and control require that you drown out the internal signals, leaving you much more vulnerable to external signals.
Billions of dollars are spent every year on the latest diet programs, diet pills and diet books, yet most dieters regain all of, if not more of their weight within one to five years . On May 6th, International No Diet Day, the National Eating Disorder Information Centre is encouraging Canadians to break free of dieting with four alternatives that will help lead to a healthier outlook and relationship with food and with oneself.
Last Thursday, October 11 was the inaugural International Day of the Girl. Several Canadian girl-centred organizations coordinated celebratory events and began the important work of facilitating dialogues around girls’ rights and developing solutions to the challenges girls face due to their gender and age.
I recently spotted a greeting card that said “I’m on two diets. There is simply not enough food on one”. Within the humorous message resides a very real truth… dieting means never eating enough. No matter how many new, creative ways that diets are re-packaged and marketed, the point is always to restrict nutritional intake and energy below what the body actually needs to sustain itself. While the multi-billion dollar diet industry promises a better body, better health and indeed a better life we now know that long term weight loss is not achievable for the vast majority of people.