Let’s talk about postpartum body image! My podcast guest on this episode is a woman I met inside my Intuitive Eating Made Easy FB group named Anita Musiol, and she’s an inspiration to all women, especially moms.
Anita shared with me that she was a relatively normal eater up until she got pregnant. She also talked about how the societal pressure to “get her body back” after pregnancy led to dieting and obsessing about food. She realized how miserable this was making her, and she decided to opt out of dieting and to reclaim her right to listen to (and trust) her body, which is what led her to discover intuitive eating.
In this episode, we discussed:
- How easy it is to distort and exaggerate our weight as a “problem” that we need to solve
- Why comments about other people’s bodies are unhelpful, and how it can send people down a path of dieting, body shame and thinking about food 24/7
- Breastfeeding as a new element of diet culture creating moral value around the way we relate to our bodies (and the pressure around new moms to breastfeed for weight loss)
- How a person’s set point weight changes with dieting
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Search for episode 27 – You Don’t Need to Get Your Pre-Baby Body Back. Talking Pregnancy and Postpartum Body Image
Here’s a breakdown of Episode #27 of Rebuilding Trust With Your Body at a glance:
[00:01 – 10:36] The Struggle With Food Restriction and Weight Obsession
- Anita shares her story of struggling with food restriction and weight obsession after getting pregnant, and eventually finding her way back to intuitive eating
- She talks about her turning point being comments from people about how she needed to “lose the baby weight”
- She shares that after her son was born and she was cleared to start exercising, she would hear comments about how women need to lose weight in order to “look good”
[10:37 – 26:47] Finding Your Way Back With Intuitive Eating
- Anita talks about pregnancy and having children is such an interesting element of how women relate to their bodies
- She says that it’s common and normal for bodies to change, and to be at a higher weight after you’ve had babies
- That’s what happens to our bodies
- That alone makes women afraid of getting pregnant again
[26:48 – 29:10] How to Stop Your Body From Weight Cycling
- She talks about how she struggled with her weight for many years and how she eventually found out that her weight was not always under her control
- She has tried different diets and methods of weight loss but none of them worked for very long
- She eventually find intuitive eating and decided to try it out
- She realized that the set point weight might change depending on how often she dieted in the past
- She found that intuitive eating is a way of eating that allows for hunger and fullness to be self-determined, rather than based on external cues
- When struggling with body image, one of the best things to do is to be grateful for their health and feel good about themselves
- One of the best pieces of advice that she has ever received is to stay true to themselves
[32:25 – 39:05] Wrapping up!
- Anita shares that being true to yourself is being honest with your thoughts, feelings, and actions
- Listening to your body is important for intuitive eating
“Everybody’s body is different in terms of how it kind of responds after pregnancy and after giving birth… That’s not how biology works. We don’t get anything back, we just have our body the way it is and we have to be able to move forward with that.” – Katy Harvey
Resources mentioned in this episode:
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Looking for more support on your journey to food freedom and body acceptance?
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