change your language of food

image via google

i have so much to share with you today.  due to some more information about my body and what’s going on, i decided to take a deeper look into the paleo diet.  now i do not eat a ton of meat because it upsets my stomach so i will try my best to make this work.  when i signed up for crossfit (i start aug 6th yahoo!) they handed me a huge packet full of Whole9 nutrition tips.  shopping lists, recipes, nutrition info, scientific studies, basically the whole 9 yards (ha! no pun intended).  i didn’t take it serious at first since i “thought” i was eating pretty good.  well looking back on things, maybe it will be good for a little change and maybe my body will respond positively to it.  who am i kidding? when does my body ever respond positively.  we’ll see how this goes.

on my search for more info about Whole9 i stumbled across their blog and found an interesting post.  you can read the original post about the language of food here.  here is one of my favorite things that melissa (founder of whole9) said:

“You are not good or bad based on your choices. They are simply choices.

You do not cheat, you make a choice.

You do no fail, you make a choice.

You can be a good person who made a bad choice.

There is no guilt, only consequence.

There is no punishment, only consequence.”

maybe it’s time i pay more attention to the words i use around food.  i “failed” today when i had some hot tamales, or can i call those hot tamales my “cheat” for the week?  who decided that a choice i made to eat hot tamales was considered a failure and that i needed to cheat to have them? woah… i made those decisions when i attached that vocabulary to my food.  i like to think that food/fitness doesn’t define me.  an idea i struggle with, but i should not feel any worse or better about myself because of the small choices i make regarding food.  those are choices i make, good or bad, but those choices do not rule my life, thoughts, or words.  we always discuss being aware of how we talk about our bodies or how we perceive ourselves in a mirror, but i have never thought about the damage i am causing myself by the negative connotation i attach to food.

as silly as this sounds, food does not judge you.  that bowl of ice cream doesn’t look at you with disappointment, and that carrot stick isn’t cheering you on.   letting food be a judge of the kind of person we are is destructive and not worth a second of our time.  i have days when i’ve eaten well and felt like a better person vs a day where i haven’t eaten very clean and feeling like a failure.  i am not sure where that attitude developed but it needs to stop.  hot tamales are just hot tamales.  they are not a fail, cheat, slip, or mistake.  they are a conscious choice i made.  i am a believer in cheat days but this article got me thinking.  do they need to be “cheat” days? or can they just be ” i ate pizza day”.

so i’d like to thank melissa over at whole9 for opening up my eyes to this idea.

“Your food choices are not a statement about your self-worth, your value, or your significance in this world. Believe this, and everything changes.” ~ Melissa Hartwig


  • Leah @ Chocolate and Wild Air
    July 25, 2012 at 3:35 pm

    LOVE this post! I think too often we, in the healthy living community, throw around words like “treat” and “cheat” too carelessly. If you want some Hot Tamales, go for it! And don’t feel guilty. That guilt is what often leads to an unhealthy relationship with food

    • jessie.james
      July 26, 2012 at 12:57 am

      agreed! that guilt is super dangerous! All of these responses are so great! It amazes me how powerful language is as well as the power of positivity!!

  • danica
    July 25, 2012 at 5:41 pm

    LOVE this. Thanks for sharing! Now I just have to work on changing how I talk to my body… yikes!

    • jessie.james
      July 26, 2012 at 1:54 am

      Me too! Sometimes I am the worst when I look in the mirror!

  • Tamara
    July 25, 2012 at 11:01 pm

    Language is truly powerful. We let words take on too much meaning and negativity. I love the idea of using action words ‘I choose’, ‘I do’ or ‘I don’t’ to replace negatives. Best of luck with making some changes!

  • KymberlyFunFit
    July 26, 2012 at 12:39 am

    So true. Your body hears every word you say. And now, given the latest in neuroscience and brain research, we know it also hears every word we think. Food is not moral, ie good or bad. Your points are so spot on! http://funandfit.org/fun-fit-radio/

    • jessie.james
      July 26, 2012 at 1:54 am

      Thank you! All thanks to that post I came by on whole9! It seriously opened my eyes!

  • MCM Mama
    July 26, 2012 at 2:34 am

    Yes, yes, yes. This is an area where I need a lot of work. Too many foods are good versus bad. I’m trying really hard to stop beating myself up when I *choose* to eat something that’s not one of my healthier choices.


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