Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Book about Dieting for Kids? Tread carefully.

A friend shared this article on my Facebook wall last week: Dangerous? Book About Dieting Teen Targets Kids 6-12. My initial thought was that the question mark after the word "Dangerous" should be changed to an exclamation point.

This children's book is about a 14-year-old girl named Maggie who goes on a diet and becomes her school's soccer star. I believe that author Paul M. Kramer has decent intentions, hoping to help overweight children feel inspired to get fit and healthy. But creating a role model like Maggie who goes from overweight and insecure to thin and popular, unfortunately, is the wrong approach.

The article about the book states, "Through time, exercise and hard work, Maggie becomes more and more confident and develops a positive self image." But the book appears to be giving the following message to kids: dieting & exercise leads to weight loss which leads to popularity and happiness. Danger. This type of thought process has been shown to lead to eating disorders and poor body image in kids (and in adults for that matter).

Nevertheless, we live in an age when the prevalence of overweight and obese children is down-right frightening. So yes, kids should be encouraged to eat well and be physically active but NOT as a means to popularity or weight loss, but rather to feeling good and being able to perform well in school and athletics. Kids don't need to read a book about a girl who goes on a diet in order to be inspired to lead healthy lives...what they need is education and example.

Overall, I believe that Kramer is passionate about helping children, and I hope that once the book comes out in October, it will not be as dangerous as I'm worried it might be.

If you want to learn more about how you can inspire children to live well, visit the following website and read about a program that is really making a difference by making it fun for kids to eat nutrient-rich foods and be physically active for at least 60 minutes per day: Fuel Up to Play 60!

I would love to hear your thoughts on this topic. It's a great conversation starter, and I think it's an important thing to consider. Be well, and enjoy the day!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Know Thyself

This week I learned that I still need to work on being ok with saying no to commitments that take away time from the things that matter most in my life. we'll see how that goes.
What will you learn about yourself this week?

Guiltless Bonus: If you're on twitter come join @iamguiltless @scritchfieldRD & @lesliegoldman for a talk about accepting compliments- 8pm EST. More details and RSVP on Facebook!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Treat yourself

Image Source

This weekend, take the time to relax, treat yourself, and be a little guiltless.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Under Pressure

We've all been there before - The deadline. The dreaded phone call. The race. The interview. The date. The first day of a new job. Meeting the boyfriend's/girlfriend's parents. The list could go on and on. It's PRESSURE. And it can easily get the best of us, which may lead to feelings of inadequacy or anxiety. Well I say it's time to just let it go already. Nobody is perfect, and as long as you do your very best, then that is good enough for me.

So the next time you feel like the pressure is just too much, reach inside yourself and lift it off. You'll see that the road ahead really isn't so bad, and you are more than capable of getting it done, and doing it well!

Or you can play this and dance it out....whatever works!

Monday, August 22, 2011

The wisdom of 20

I find that I am constantly proud of my friends and family. Everyday there is something that just makes my smile and appreciate them even more. On Friday I logged in to Facebook and about started jumping up and down with joy when I read my sister's "status":

Whether it be at 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90, 100+ the revelation of body acceptance is spectacular!

Do you love your body the way it is? If so when did you start? And if not, what is stopping you?

Friday, August 19, 2011

Don't Apologize

Never apologize for being glamorous!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

MY BODY gallery

In answer to Elizabeth's post on Monday, I want to share one of my favorite body-image boosting websites: My Body Gallery.

Women visit this website for a few reasons:
  1. To share a picture of themselves in order to confirm for women everywhere that all bodies are different and unique and something to take care of and be proud of.
  2. To use the gallery to remind themselves that there are literally thousands of people out there who wear the same pants size, are the same height, same weight, and have the same fears surrounding body image.
  3. To feel empowered. To feel like they are part of something bigger.
I imagine, or hope, that's why a lot of you also visit Guiltless.

Check out the site.
Follow on Twitter.
Send us your questions.

Be well, and enjoy the day!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Guiltless Recommends: About Face

There are quite a few websites I go to for constant inspiration, to stay up to date on Guiltless fodder, and that I enjoy browsing in my free time. I decided to take this Monday to talk about one of my favorite Media "Watch-Dog" sites: About Face.

Their mission is to face a "toxic media environment" face on, advocating against low self-esteem, depression, persistent anxiety over weight and appearance, extremely unhealthy diets and exercise regimens, and eating disorders, by equipping women and girls with the tools to understand and resist harmful media messages that affect their self-esteem and body image.
They divide ad campaigns into a Gallery of Offenders and a Gallery of Winners-both equally informative and eye-opening. Reading their list of 10 ways to empower yourself, is just that-empowering and uplifting. Browsing through their "Facts" page I find 1238793847 new things i could write passionately about. Check out the entirety of the About Face website for many more juicy fact, figures, pictures, and inspiration!
You can also support About-Face's work. Follow them on Twitter, and Like them on Facebook!

What are some of your favorite websites? What else should I have my eyes on?

Friday, August 12, 2011


Never bend your head. Always hold it high. Look the world straight in the face. - Helen Keller

Photo Source

Have a guiltless weekend!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Find your Pearls

By: Stephanie Horton

Many moons ago, Elizabeth wrote about Matt Demer's Pearl Photoseries. It wasn't long after that before we so happily accepted his gracious invitation to join him on this endeavor.

During our photo shoot, Matt brought out something in me that I write about every week: confidence, comfort in my own skin, and inner beauty. I don't think I have to remind you how much easier this is said than done.

His camera, his creativity, his vision: Wow. He had me at "Let the pearls represent what's going on in your life right now."

Maybe it was the fantastic playlist, maybe it was Matt's moving story leading up to the actual photoshoot - Whatever it was, it was an experience I will never forget. I walked out of it feeling like a strong, confident, fun & exciting woman. And I saw Elizabeth for the graceful, strong spirited, ambitious beauty that she is.

When I first looked at these photos last night, which is now months after the actual shoot, my initial reaction was to critique. "Ok, which picture flatters me most, or more importantly, which photos are the least flattering..." But then as soon as I clicked on the first picture, the expression in my own eyes reminded me of something REALLY important:

This photoseries, much like this life, is not about showing others your most flattering moments or showcasing your strengths. It's not about hiding your flaws or covering up your weaknesses. It's about celebrating who you are, how you experience life, and where you plan to be.

A HUGE applause to my good friend Matt for bringing so much joy into this world with the click of a camera.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Balance-Self Discovery Word by Word

I've been inspired by many of the posts started by Nourishing the Soul- Self-Discovery Word by Word Blogger Series. The word for August is Balance.

Who out there is NOT looking to balance their lives more? to spend more time doing the things they love vs the things they need to do? Unbalance is never fun, whether it be too many french fries in one sitting, or over-exercising to the point of injury. But balancing work and pleasure is the balance that most of us think of first when balance comes to mind.

I found this quote by Donald Trump himself, and while he's not my favorite person in the world, i thought it was very true:

If you're interested in 'balancing' work and pleasure, stop trying to balance them. Instead make your work more pleasurable. -Donald Trump
I am very lucky to be studying and learning how to practice in a field that I love-nutrition. However there are certainly things about it that I don't love. I personally am not a fan of working in a hospital calculating tube feeds, and don't believe in a reductionist view of nutrition that some of my colleagues take. Timely enough for this post, I am currently working in a situation that encompasses some of my least favorite things. So how am I personally trying to maintain balance with my own true self, and stay happy? I'm continuing my routine, of working out, spending time with the people that matter in my life, making sure to call those I miss who are far away, eating well and taking time to relax, and watch a television show, or play with the puppies. The relaxation part is key, and usually the first thing that I squeeze out when I'm tackling a big to-do list. But my quality of life greatly improves when I bring the balance back.

How do you find balance in your life? Share in this self-discovery!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Maintain a Healthy Body Image

Body image is influenced by so many factors, both inside of our minds and within our environment. Here are a few ways to help you maintain a healthy body image when you're encountered with a body-image-destroyers (think magazine ads, runway shows, etc).

1. Don't compare yourself to others. You are unique and beautiful, and everyone sees you as a special individual person, not as a pants size.
2. Turn off the TV, and open a book. Characters in books have much more depth, and it's up to your own imagination to create their image. And when you picture these characters, you're not thinking of how many inches their thighs are - you are thinking about personal characteristics that stand out to you, and you create their image from those important traits.
3. Take a yoga class. Studies show that people who practice yoga have more self awareness and tend to pay more attention to what they eat. This kind of mindfulness helps us maintain a positive image of ourselves.
There are always obstacles in the road. They key is learning how to get around those obstacles successfully. This is your journey, and it's up to you to live in a way that makes you happy and content.

Be well, and enjoy the weekend!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Negativity Stats

Sometimes we can be our own worst enemy.....

Recent research conducted for new eating disorder charity The Succeed Foundation, in England found that 30% of women would trade at least one year of their life to achieve their ideal body weight and shape. 93% of the women surveyed reported that they had had negative thoughts about their appearance during the past week. 31% had negative thoughts several times a day.

What good do those negative thoughts do? Is hating your body going to make it magically change? Nope. Is thinking negative thoughts about your appearance going to make you more attractive? Not at all. In fact they often turn right around and bite you in the back, as they make you seem insecure, unsure, and not confident.

So let's reshape that inner dialogue.

What is one thing you love about yourself today?
repeat after me: I am so absolutely incredibly extraordinary

How often do you have negative thoughts about your body? What will you do this week to reshape that inner dialogue?