For 12 years, I struggled with feeling confident in my body and around food. Today, I am proud to say that I love my body, have a healthy relationship with food, and am a Speaker, Writer, and Certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach.
Overcoming negative body image
When I was 24, I decided I wanted to be at peace with my body. A war had been raging on inside of me over what I ate, how I felt about myself, and the way I looked. I was tired of it. I always felt like I was missing something. What was the secret to loving my body and feeling good in my own skin? I wanted to know how I could truly be healthy, not just in my body but in the way that I saw my body. I wanted to end the battle of trying to make my body "perfect". So I called a truce with myself. My war on body image was finally over.
From counting every calorie I ate, to binging, purging, and starving myself, I obsessed over food and what I looked like since I was 12 years old. I tried restricting, calorie counting, discipline, deprivation and dieting. I exercised a lot. No matter how skinny I became, I still felt fat. I even went to fat camp when I was in high school. I was the skinniest person there, weighing in at 115 lbs. All of the fat girls were shocked when I showed up on the first day. The counselors had no idea why I was there.
I felt guilty about eating a salad that day, while they were smuggling candy bars into their rooms at night.
One girl told me I could fit my entire body into one of her pant legs. I wore a size 0. I learned the basics of nutrition and exercise there, which empowered me to make healthier choices. But even after camp, I continued to allow food to evoke so much anxiety in me that I was never able to enjoy eating without feeling guilty about it. I still thought I was "fat". Controlling what I ate was my way of rewarding or punishing myself. Soon enough I came to the point of absolutely hating myself for who I was. I believed that I didn't deserve to eat because of what I saw when I looked in the mirror.
When I learned how to love and accept myself, I healed my relationship with food. My entire world changed.
I had always loved cooking and being creative in the kitchen. As I got older I developed a passion for Nutrition. I realized that food had been controlling my life, and I finally gained my power back through a LOT of work - specifically through extreme self love and mindful eating. Once I healed my relationship with myself and my body, I healed my relationship with food. Miracles began to unfold. I really started to own my presence and respect myself. I found the courage to pursue my dream career, travel the world, develop beautiful relationships, enjoy the food I ate, and most importantly, love myself.
I want to share with others that they are not alone. It is possible to have healthy relationships with yourself, your body, and food. Through my laser-focused coaching, speaking, and workshops, I help others heal their relationship with food and create positive, a loving body image. My philosophy is not about what you eat, it's about how you eat. Taking a look at how you eat can tell you a lot about your relationship with your body and yourself.