Ashley Cronin

3 posts

Sorry Food Guilt, You’re Not Invited to Our Holiday Parties.

The holidays are upon us. It’s a time for celebration, traditions, and catching up with loved ones. And all of these things will likely include food. Unfortunately, it often comes with a helping of guilt, shame, and the promises of future dieting. Possibly served by ourselves, a loved one, or not-so loved one.
So how can we approach this holiday season without guilt as our plus one at the table?

 Give Yourself Some Perspective

There are lots of things that are different about the holidays. More get-togethers. Sparkly, light up decorations. Sending a boatload of cards. Celebratory foods are just one part of lots of things that are different.  Enjoy and connect with foods this season but drop the judgment and accept the natural ebb and flow of this time of year, and every time of year. 

Go in With a Mantra

With diet and body talk swirling around us this season, it’s helpful to have a grounding, coping thought if you find yourself taking food guilt on. Some of our favorites: “Food is not morally good or bad”, “Food is not something to earn or to be punished for”, “I will be gentle with myself and offer myself kindness during this meal”. 

Up the Self-Care

The holidays can be great, but they can also be a lot! It’s OK to feel overwhelmed and not in the jolliest of moods. Think about what self-care you can offer yourself during this busy time of year. Bundling up for a walk, saying no to an invite, reading a favorite book, starting meditation. Whatever it is, know that in the season of giving it’s also important to give to yourself. 

Ditch the Diet For the New Year

So much of our food guilt can come in December because of our culture’s regular push for diets, cleanses, and overall reinvention into living our “best life” come January.  If you have followed this pattern over the years, we welcome you to take a step back. Consider your history on this diet rollercoaster, ask how it’s served you, and get curious about how you may eat if you never felt that the next diet was coming. 

From the Heart,

Ashley

The Before & After Body

You know the”success” stories. Back in the day it used to be the occassional diet commercial on TV or article in a magazine. Now depending on what you subscribe to, it can be a full feed to scroll through on your social media. The images that prove it’s all “worth it.” The sacrificing, the constant thinking about food, the diet rules, the guilt, the punishing workouts.

The proof is in the picture, it’s the

“Before & After Body”.

We have seen these images so much I’m sure several can pop into your head as you read this. The “Before Body” portrayed via an unflattering picture. Maybe it’s a selfie in a bathroom mirror wearing ill fitting clothes. Just generally looking sad in a family or group picture. Or the *gasp* dreaded picture of the “Before Body” eating food. Thoughts are evoked with this saavvy marketing such as “oh wow that person looks really sad in the bathroom”. “They also look sad at that family gathering”. And “oh no, they were eating that food so that’s why their life and body is so miserable”. Thankfully just before we go all the way into the deep pit of despair we are saved by the “After Body”! Suddenly, that body is out living life. And not only living life, but living it’s BEST life. There’s a smile telling us that it is all good. Maybe we see the person now having fun at the family gathering, because you know, their body is smaller. There is definitely no picture of them eating food. They may be doing something active, finishing that 5K, frolicking on the beach, or at the very least, they are finally out of the bathroom.

This type of depiction not only perpetuates weight stigma , but it continues to feed our inherited narrative that we must make it into our “After Body” to live a life worth living. This if/then living can create such limitations to living that “best life” we are told to live daily, (mostly by IG influencers that are selling us something). If my body is smaller, then I can start dating. If my body is more toned, then I can get that yoga certification. If my pant size goes down, I’ll be able to ask for that promotion at work.

As a non-diet detitian, I see so many people put their life on hold waiting for that “After Body”. Cycling through diet after diet, they await the moment when they wake up and start living that life worth living. The problem with this of course, is that your life is now, not X pounds away.

What do you want to do today,

in this body?

I often ask clients to take a step back and examine, what does their “After Body” life promise them? Does that body enjoy running? Try a 5 minute, 10 minute, or 1 minute run/walk today. Is your “After Body” more confident? Perhaps you’ll challenge yourself today to give a stronger handshake, make more eye contact, or sign up for something that you typically wouldn’t. Does that body eat more homecooked meals? Look up a recipe today to try this weekend or sign up for a cooking class.

Take a moment to consider what your “After Body” has promised you and consider how you might live it today.

From the Heart,

Ashley

Eating From the Heart

Welcome! Liz & I are grateful to have you here. After years as friends and colleagues, we are excited to take on this new adventure and launch our mutual practice, From the Heart Nutrition.

So what does “From the Heart Nutrition” really mean? The basis of our work is compassionate nutrition or “eating from the heart”. We provide a research informed practice with the founding principle that each one of us is perfectly designed to take care of our needs.

So many of us spend years disconnecting from our needs. Ignoring our hunger. Denying our food desires. Following rules. Punishing our bodies. Eating from the heart is the practice of reconnecting with our needs, honoring our bodies, and tapping into & strengthening our intuition.

As registered dietitians, we are here to empower you as the expert on you. Help you to use nutrition as an act of self-care, not punishment. And to support you as you eat with care, compassion, and From the Heart.

From the Heart,

Ashley