Recovery // How to handle diet talk

Did you know that research suggests that women can spend 18.9 years of their lives on diets? (source) So it's only inevitable that eventually someone is going to tell you about their latest weight loss plan in great detail.I think it's become so ingrained in our society now that it's considered normal and healthy to diet.Talking about weight loss has become a way for people to bond,and nothing unites people faster than a shared struggle.However as a person in recovery,I could do without hearing about how "bad" you were when you ate that cupcake.Of course I don't blame people for talking about their diets,they offer the exciting prospect that when you finish them you'll be thin and gorgeous,it doesn't work like that but I have no room to talk! I'm trying to learn that my life should be about exploring opportunities and ideas and not getting caught up in what other's are doing.I completely support people's right to do what they want with their own bodies and lives,but I'm talking about how to avoid and handle the often non stop chatter surrounding it.

1. Remove yourself from the situation

I know this isn't always possible,but if you're able to it's a good idea to try and move away from certain conversations.Protecting your mental health and/or recovery is more important,and if you feel like certain people or discussions are affecting that then some time by yourself might be helpful.I try to find a hobby to pass some time until I feel more comfortable,blogging is such a great way to vent! Other ideas might be listening to music,tidying up or watching cat videos on Youtube (would recommend.)

2. Change the subject

If you're not able to go somewhere else,subtly changing the conversation to another subject can really help shift things towards a more positive direction.For example if someone says "urgh I shouldn't have eaten that burger at McDonald's,I'm so fat" you could say "I thought it looked quite nice,did you see (insert name) there? I find that if you mention another aspect of their evening/outfit/food or whatever they're talking about the diet talk often ends there.

3. Be understanding

These days talking about dieting and weight loss is as common as discussing the weather,and you can see why in today's society.The constant sexualisation and objectification of women in adverts can really distort what both sexes think is the right way for a body to look.Of course,all sorts of mental health problems and/or unhealthy behaviour can come from not being able to match up to these standards.Diet propaganda is displayed on our TV's and magazines 24/7 and there's never a break from it,so you can understand why some people may be swept away with the idea that they too can be the "perfect ideal".Whether or not you agree with their diet,you probably know what it's like to feel insecure so a quick "I'm always here if you need to talk" might go a long way.

4. Talk to them

Sometimes people can be oblivious to what they're saying and how it can affect other people,it's quite easy for people to get wrapped up in their little bubble! If it's really getting to you,having a quick word with them could make all the difference.Something like "I'm trying to change my mindset and learn to accept my body without dieting,I'd really appreciate it if you didn't mention your diet all the time." Making sure that you're honest and open with them is definitely the right way to go,seeing as that's what all good friendships should be based on!

I've found these ways of dealing with diet talk really effective,obviously you can't censor people and their going to say what they want to,but that doesn't mean you can't say how you feel or have to be in a negative atmosphere.

Do you have any tips to deal with diet talk?


  1. The word diet always annoys me and hearing different stories of how women are trying to loose weight, 'juice diet and only having a salad at dinner'. NOOOO, it is so not good for your body, eat healthy with the right portions, drink plenty of water and get moving!

    Mon Petit Billet

  2. I agree,it's definitely an area that lots of people are confused about and I can't blame them really! I often wander what the world would be like if the media didn't push restrictive diets to the public.x


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