Journeys with Julie- Food Harmony

One topic I have avoided ‘till now is my relationship to food. A love/hate kind of thing, food has always been one of my biggest struggles. It is also a subject I have a lot of difficulty talking about. However, I’ve always known I’m not alone in my battle with food. Today, it is more common than not for females to have a negative relationship with what they eat.  We are forever searching for the enigmatic answer to eating right or the perfect diet plan. Unfortunately, as I’ve learned, there aren’t any easy answers to these questions.

Growing up, I was angry with my body and food was often to blame.  In addition to feeling like I could only eat certain things because that’s what the media gods told me, I also have always had a super sensitive digestive system that has added to my insecurities…i.e. I am the one enjoying my “alternative snack” at parties while my friends eat cupcakes. In fact, I still feel a tinge of jealously today for those who can eat pizza, red meat, cake, sweets, etc. without the regret or the tummy ache. Sure, sometimes it’s a blessing that I can eat only healthy food due to my condition, but it can also be a curse when I want to eat out and can’t find anything on the menu. In addition, like many, I am very susceptible to the latest diets on the market, hoping maybe they provide some relief from my disordered eating and my “large hips”. But, we all know those fad diets rarely work.

I wish I could say I’ve conquered this challenge and have overcome all my food woes. That’s not exactly the case. I will forever be one of those picky eaters because of my body and I will always probably have some difficulty when it comes to eating out or avoiding those chips at the party. But, what I can change is how I view food itself. Sure, changing my mindset is a process and something I must work on everyday, but I have slowly come to appreciate and even LOVE some food. I’m even finding that I’m allowed some variety in my diet, whether it’s mixing up the fruit I buy at the supermarket or venturing into the seafood world. In addition, opening myself up to others about food has really helped. Recently, I even faced my fear of seeing a doctor who might not have solved the issue, but helped me to choose the right foods for me and helped me to classify some of the foods I should always avoid.  While it’s hard to hear that I will always live with a sensitive stomach, it’s nice to know that I don’t have to live with the sadness that comes along with it. Accepting that which I cannot change has helped me to see that if I stop focusing on the negative, I can focus on all the positives about food. Now, food is something that gives me energy, comfort and dare I say happiness 🙂

-Julie Wagenblast
LeadHer™ Intern, Campus Calm™
Learn more about Julie here.

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