Feeling Super Guilty About Calories Is Bad for You.
Food can be filled with emotion and meaning. When it says the number of calories, even more so that this number corresponds to your weight, your exercise habits and your potentially difficult feelings about both.
So, it’s understandable whether you feel guilty about sneaking a snack, with or without a label. But if this applies to you, I implore you: do not consider these feelings normal or normal, or part of a healthy attitude towards food.
I think about it because of a tweet I saw from John Tesch, a radio host known for sharing lifehack-style advice nuggets. “Feeling guilty about the snack you just ate?” he asks rhetorically before advising the reader to do housework to burn calories.
There’s a lot going on here. First, why do housework? Is it subtle to keep women in their place?
But more importantly, if you feel guilty about a snack, you should consider seeking help from a therapist who has experience working with eating disorders.
Of course, maybe this tweet was a joke or just a cheap calculation of clicks. But it speaks to transactional thinking, which is consistent with an eating disorder . The idea of trading food for exercise is also a crappy way for influencers and companies to blame you for what you eat, your activity level, or both. God forbid you to have a snack without feeling bad about it and not finding a way to “earn” it with hard work.
In truth, it’s okay, okay, okay to eat something and not feel guilty about it. Maybe the word “normal” is difficult to use here because this kind of thinking is so common. But you don’t have to accept it. You can just eat a snack – be it 150 calories or a heck of a lot more – and get on with your life.