So I usually go straight from diet culture –> disordered eating –> eating disorders.
But this is not always the case. I tend to beat up diet culture. I think I do this as this is how my eating disorder was started. Let’s take it back to 2008: I was reading health magazines that were telling me to cut out calories, swap this or that, and exercising to much for what my body was intaking. I started to spiral into a very unhealthy and restrictive relationship with food.
But eating disorders for many (including myself) are more complex than this. Here are just a few reasons why eating disorders could form:
- Genetics: Maybe you have a family member that had an eating disorder. Maybe your genes were designed to effect hunger and fullness differently. Irregular hormone imbalance.
- Psychological: Suffering through low self-esteem. A poor body image. The need for self control. A trauma in your past. Gender dysphoria. Other mental illnesses.
- Sociocultural: A thin body ideal. Influences from social media, family and friends. The very narrow definition of beauty. Culture norms of a “size you should be.” Athletics.
- Interpersonal: Difficulty expressing emotions. A history of being teased for weight or size. Sexual or physical abuse.
This is just a handful of reasons. I have worked with many individuals with eating disorders who are never able to pinpoint what the trigger was. And that is okay.
If you are interested in learning where your eating disorder was trigged from, I would recommend you seeking out therapy. As this could really help get you into a place of peace.
I am not going to back down from calling out diet culture. The culture is too damaging to too many individuals.
I find the rhetoric that is spewed to be a bully.
I will constantly support HAES and eating in an intuitive way. What I will stop doing is solely blaming diet culture (I don’t want to give it THAT much power), for eating disorders and instead of blaming our eating disorders I will work towards figuring out what factors are attributing to an eating disorder.