What is “Healthy Eating”?

March is a Nutrition Month here in Canada.

This year the public campaign theme is “Good For You”, which I find very relatable to the professional approaches I operate from.

I purposely choose to avoid using such phrases as “healthy eating” or “healthy food” and believe that what is considered “good for you” would depend on a large number of factors and may differ greatly from what might be good or ”healthy” for someone else. Without the context of social determinants of health, eating history, health conditions, personal preferences, and other circumstances, the word “healthy” is no more than a meaningless cliché.

When clients share with me about their attempts at eating “healthy” and the guilt that comes with not being able to do it, I invite them to explore what “health” and “healthy” mean for them?

I would often here that “healthy” means refraining from eating carbs, or sweets, not eating after 6 pm along with other unhelpful food rules wellness culture had created for us, so we can beat ourselves up every time we fall short of the ideal “healthy”, rooted in healthism and other oppressive forces.

If you find yourself immersed in food guilt and being constantly attacked by the food police inside your mind every time you make an “unhealthy” food choice, ask yourself:

  • ”What does the term healthy imply for me?”
  • ”Who coined this idea of healthy?”
  • ”How does it suit my current goals and overall wellbeing”?

If you want to learn more on how to heal your relationship with food and shift from food guilt to food peace, my online course Food Harmony goes on sale for the whole month of March! You will get $100 off of the regular price + access to an upgraded version of the course (which will be released in the next few months).