UN-Podcast 047 & Why You Shouldn’t Go Paleo

UN-Podcast 047 & Why You Shouldn’t Go Paleo

What I’m about to say is going to sound controversial, but it’s kind of not controversial at all: I don’t think you should “go Paleo.” I’m cringing, waiting for the angry comments. [image source] You see, “going Paleo” is what kick-started my recovery—for real—this time. Going Paleo, the action of upping the sat fat and eschewing my desire to chew on grains, was my first foray into the world of mental health in addition to the physical. Going Paleo introduced me words like “nourish” and “satiety”—words that I had only understood conceptually but had never actually practiced. But going Paleo is also fraught with pitfalls. If you’re a blog or podcast addict like myself, then you’re exposed to all sorts of ways to manipulate your numbers—not just your cholesterol, but also your weight. If you’re not careful, you could spend all of your time, money, and energy on a high fat, low carb, intermittent, bulletproof, cold thermogenic, cleanse/fast/detox/challenge/reset. Paleo also comes with a silent second word attached: Diet. The original research was shared in a diet book. Physical health was sold with the promise of effortless weight loss through a restriction of previously damaging foods. And while so much of the subsequent research, writing, and development of the ancestral health movement now attempts to move the focus away from diet to mental health, disease prevention and management, functional medicine, environmental and economic sustainability, and so much more, there’s still that lingering promise of looking better while you WOD when you attach the word “Paleo” to your lifestyle. The problem here is that we fool ourselves with the word “lifestyle.”...
UN-Podcast 038: UNresolved (Justin Manning)

UN-Podcast 038: UNresolved (Justin Manning)

There are few things in this world that I abjectly and unequivocally hate, and two of those things involve suitcases: packing and unpacking. [image source] Ironic, considering the fact that I use the packing metaphor on a weekly basis on the Finding Our Hunger podcast, I know. However, when it comes to real-world suitcases—or duffel bags or boxes—I recoil. Packing is such a difficult process, because you’re forced to make decisions about the things you anticipate being important in your future, the things you’re willing to carry—while trying to minimize the weight of the load and the amount of space you’re willing to let each item take up. Packing forces you to confront “the stuff” that makes up your identity—and prioritize each item in your bags. Packing forces you to decide if you really need to hold onto that memento you never look at, if you have room for the ball gown you never wear. Unpacking is also a difficult proposition, because you’re forced to spend time taking things out of your suitcase and assessing each item: does it need to be washed, can it be worn again, is it a new item for which you must find room on a shelf? Unpacking forces you to spend time with “the stuff” that makes up your identity, and to clean it, fold it, put it away, repack it, or throw it out. Sometimes it’s a good idea to keep a ball gown in your suitcase. #FindingOurHunger Click To Tweet The problem with packing is that sometimes you’re not ready to confront “the stuff” you’ve got in your bags and make...
Why Reading Tips to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain on the Internet Won’t Help You Avoid Gaining Weight, and Other Thoughts on the Language of Disordered Eating

Why Reading Tips to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain on the Internet Won’t Help You Avoid Gaining Weight, and Other Thoughts on the Language of Disordered Eating

I just searched Google for the words “holiday weight gain” in the news. In 0.17 seconds, Google returned about 30,400 results. This isn’t just “evergreen content”—I’m talking about stuff that’s being written right now about holiday weight gain. What does this tell us? 1. That if you’re looking to boost your page in the search rankings, you’re going to need a less competitive keyword? or 2. That if you’re on the internet at all this holiday season you’re most likely going to run across another stupid blog post about the “7 ways to avoid holiday weight gain,” “why holiday weight gain isn’t inevitable,” and “why exercise may not stave off holiday weight gain,” et. al. Here’s a quick Christmas story for you: Once upon a time, when I was naive young lass, if you said the word “holiday” to me, I immediately thought of presents and decorations and time off from school. And then, the big bad (media) wolf came and huffed and puffed and blew my little gingerbread house of cards down, exposing to me the world of fad diets and fear mongering. Despite the fact that this greatly reduced my ability to enjoy the holidays, every time someone dangled the “6 tips for holiday weight loss” carrot, I bit. And then one day, while being bombarded and blinded by holiday fat loss/weight gain talk on the internet, TV, radio and in my yoga studio, Crossfit gym, company holiday party, neighborhood Starbucks,  I realized that, *SPOLER ALERT* much like Santa Claus, this whole “winter weight gain” phenomenon didn’t actually exist. This whole thing—this whole media machine—this whole concept that holidays are about overindulging, under...
Your Body is Not a Calorie Counter (and Other Podcast-y Thoughts)

Your Body is Not a Calorie Counter (and Other Podcast-y Thoughts)

I know I don’t normally post on Saturdays, but I had to share this with you. Recently, I was on the Rebooted Body podcast, which is hosted by Finding Our Hunger podcast guest Kevin Geary. It was, quite honestly, one of the BEST conversations I’ve ever had about health, nutrition, exercise, body image, and how we talk about weight with ourselves–and with others. I really, really hope you’ll give this one a listen. Even if you don’t think you have disordered eating or exercise behaviors, it’s really worth your time. Listen to “Healing Our Thoughts Words and Actions” on the Rebooted Body Podcast now! (You can also tune in on iTunes or Stitcher radio) And, if you’re interested in learning more about why we can’t measure our health in calories, check out Kevin’s “Definitive Guide to Calories.”  AND if you haven’t already, go listen to the Finding Our Hunger episode with Kevin! Happy Saturday! Stay hungry, @MissSkinnyGenes...
Friday Reading: Stop Counting to Make Paleo Count

Friday Reading: Stop Counting to Make Paleo Count

Happy Friday! So, I’ve been receiving a lot of communication from all of you out there in the blogosphere regarding feeling out of control about counting, tracking, and logging “health goals.” While the blogs, podcasts, and books make it seem like you can only achieve some “perfect body/perfect health” (and the promised happiness that it will bring)  through big data and self-quantification, I beg to differ…so I wrote an article about it. Go read: Stop Counting to Make Paleo Count Also! My blogging partner Jennifer Mulder over at the Health Sessions has posted her recap to the One Month Tune-Up. Her takeaways are really great–go give it a read! Aaaaaaand finally: Finding Our Hunger podcast guest Kevin Geary has just released a really great action guide for those of you out there who are finding yourselves struggling with food triggers. I love how Kevin takes a no-nonsense approach to disordered eating* by diving into the logic and the psychology of why we hold ourselves back from making peace with food. You can get the guide here. Stay hungry, @MissSkinnyGenes *Many members of Kevin’s audience are looking to lose weight or optimize exercise. While I believe that his message can be used by  disordered eaters at both ends of the spectrum, if you’re dealing with anorexia/orthorexia, please be aware of potential...