I am watching agog. As I sit eating my lunch (a delicious nut roast with vegetables, having done my Monday morning Zumba session). I am watching a mother cooking part food on her daughter’s birthday. But the daughter won’t be allowed any of the part food because this young, slim, apparently healthy girl, needs to watch what she eats.
The party is a pool party. What a great idea! Something kids enjoy, a way of them exercising without realising. I’m all for that! But the friends will be eating the part food while the birthday girl watches on. What message is this sending to her? The girl is occasionally allowed chocolates and biscuits, so long as she does a specific number of sit ups. So she has to work for her “treats”.
Now I’m no expert. I’m overweight, have been most of my life. But I have three healthy boys, all different builds, who will as happily snack on an apple or chunk of cucumber as they will a biscuit, who will happily cycle and run around, and burn off energy through play. I don’t need them to carry out aerobics sessions to eat a chocolate bar. And I wouldn’t dream of giving them a birthday party where they can look but not touch the food?
How much of a message is this girls mother giving out that there are good foods and there are very very very bad foods!
Maybe it is my own personal journey that leads me to think this girl will rebel big time when the opportunity hits her? Maybe it is my experiences of good and bad foods that cause concern that this mother and daughter are looking down the loaded barrel of an eating disorder.
But raising healthy children is a desire for many of us. None of us wants our child to be bullied for their size. So the question is, how do we do it without leaving our children scarred for life? How to we promote a healthy lifestyle without the hangups? There has to be a better way.
Again, I am back looking at the answer of Intuitive Eating. Our bodies know so much more than we give them credit for. Can’t we all try tuning in a listening a bit more? Slow down, chill out, and tune in.