It Happened This Week: Family Tension, Emotional Eating & Heartbreaking News about Little Girls


Tara Parker-Pope wowed  us again this week with a great article in the New York Times on family criticisms about what we choose to eat and how much. A great read for anyone anticipating a lot of family gatherings in the coming weeks.

As we enter the holidays, here’s more support for mindful eating as a great strategy:  Eating quickly curtails the production of hormones that signal satiety.  We’ve found, however, that many women have trouble recognizing or trusting those signals, even when they do eat slowly.  If this sounds like you,  maybe our article on mindful eating can help.


If emotional eating is your challenge, consider this:  A study at Laval University in Quebec showed food intake in response to feelings was significantly lower in women who focused on a healthy lifestyle, size acceptance and non-dieting, instead of weight loss.  Hey, that’s the Green Mountain approach!  It’s called Health at Every Size (HAES).

The researcher in the above study commented that the results of her study suggest that the HAES approach could be a good strategy for preventing weight gain.  Clearly something to consider as a study at University of Central Florida showed that almost half of 3-to-6 year-old girls in the study said they worried about being  fat.  If we are what we think, and there’s plenty to say we are, it’s time to change this attitude, not only for these little girls but for the health of the nation.  Fat phobia and the resultant misguided weight control strategies that people get caught up in puts health at risk as well as increases likelihood of weight gain that’s not healthy.

8 responses to “It Happened This Week: Family Tension, Emotional Eating & Heartbreaking News about Little Girls”

  1. Julie Trevor says:

    Hey, no comments about my weight or what I ate this year…maybe the family is finally getting the message (esp. Mom) or could it be that since I’m more comfortable in my skin, my clothes and my body I’m projecting more confidence in fending off such comments or hearing them differently.

    Also duly noted: My lack of hunger throughout the day…a very satisfying experience.

  2. Marsha says:

    Awareness is a wonderful thing, isn’t it, Cindy?

    That’s so great, Julie!! Sounds like you had a special day. Here’s hoping your holiday season goes similarly.

  3. Sagan says:

    That’s really sad about the young girls, but not surprising. We NEED to be proactive and do something to prevent that kind of poor body image.
    .-= Sagan’s last blog post..Top Ten Ways to Keep Warm in the Winter =-.

  4. I appreciated the New York Times article about family meals. It is interesting, I don’t comment on what others eat. But family members assume I have a certain opinion since I am a dietitian. They say things like, “don’t let Linda know you are eating that”. They are grouping foods into good or bad, putting judgements where I have not. I just want to enjoy the meal and the company.

  5. Marsha says:

    That is an occupational hazard, isn’t it, Linda? But after years of hearing me speak out about not putting judgments on foods, my family is more likely to look at me out of the corner of their eyes when they pronounce something is bad. It’s probably in the hope that I won’t start up an in-depth discussion (or maybe monologue) on how enjoyment is part of healthy eating. Or maybe it’s because they do want to hear that, as we so often hear anything but. Either way, I have learned to pick my moments. 😉

  6. Julie Trevor says:

    Marsha, it’s taken me a while but I am finally embracing enjoyment as a part of “healthy” eating. My 17 y.o. stepson’s bio class is now focusing on food choices, obsessing over calories and driving him nuts. Great opportunity for me to pass on what is now working for me…
    And yes, he had real whipped cream on his pumpkin pie – LOL

  7. Marsha says:

    Great again, Julie! And yes, what they teach in schools is so worrisome. The diet mentality is everywhere — even the funny papers. I noticed yesterday that Dagwood was going on a diet after Thanksgiving, but he was soon into his stash of candy bars. No comment on the wrongheadedness of diets; just appeared to be more of a comment on how failure is guaranteed, although Blondie “won” a bet as a result of Dagwood’s failure. I may need to write a blog post on this one. 🙂

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About the Author

Marsha Hudnall, MS, RDN, CD

If you’re looking for an embodiment of dedication disguised as obsession, look no further. Marsha is a registered dietitian who has spent the last four decades working to help women give up dieting rules and understand how to truly take care of themselves. Her mission in life is to help women learn to enjoy eating and living well, without worries about their weight. She encourages women to embrace their love of food, which you might call being a foodie. If so, it’s appropriate because being a foodie means you pay attention when you eat. That’s a recipe made in heaven for eating well. Marsha is the President and Co-Owner of Green Mountain at Fox Run.

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