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Food for Thought Summer 2017: Bouncing Back from Body Shame

Food for Thought Summer 2017: Bouncing Back from Body Shame

Contents

  • Body-Image Shame: Causes, Consequences, and Resilience, Sandra Aamodt, Ph.D.
  • Breaking the 'Should' Habit, Megrette Fletcher, M.Ed., RD, CDE
  • What Can We Do With Shame? Caroline Baerten, RD, Educational Handout
  • Meditation: Promoting Body Acceptance: Listening to My Body by Megrette Fletcher, M.Ed., RD, CDE

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About this issue

Thank you for reading our summer issue on how food, eating, and our body image can lead to the universal experience of shame. This ambitious edition of Food for Thought offers the reader a glimpse into the many causes of shame, the basis of shame resilience, and the emerging benefits of a mindful eating practice to counter this toxic emotion.

The trade article, intended for anyone working with clients experiencing shame, is Body-Image Shame: Causes, Consequences, and Resilience by Sandra Aamodt, Ph.D., board member of The Center for Mindful Eating and author of Why Diets Make Us Fat: The Unintended Consequences of Our Obsession with Weight Loss. Sandra explains, “For many people, a major source of shame is their bodies, and the shame manifests as as failing to meet some standard of beauty or function.” This article explores the complex nature of shame and reviews the research linking shame with disordered eating.

The educational handout, Shame, which we hope you will share with clients, was written by Caroline Baerten, The Center for Mindful Eating Vice President, who is a mindfulness-based nutritionist/RD, qualified chef, and integrative psychotherapist. Caroline compassionately explains what shame is and how shame may be experienced. “The first thing we can acknowledge is that this hidden secret of “not being or doing enough” is extremely energy consuming.” She offers three clear steps to overcome shame and build shame resilience.

To effectively treat patients who experience shame, professionals need to build their own shame resilience. The practical article, Breaking the “Should” Habit, describes the advantages of noticing the word “should.” Megrette Fletcher, M.Ed., RD, CDE, co-founder of The Center for Mindful Eating and author of The Core Concept of Mindful Eating, demonstrates how the “should” habit has no regarding for what is present, but “it is the tendency to make judgments about what you ‘should’ feel or do.”

We hope you enjoy learning about the help that mindful eating can offer both professionals and clients in overcoming shame. The issue is completed by a six-step guided meditation, Promoting Body Acceptance: Listening to My Body, which we hope can become part of your mindfulness practice.


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