“Popcorn for breakfast! Why not? It’s a grain. It’s like, like, grits, but with high self-esteem.”

― James Patterson, The Angel Experiment

The best anti-body shaming national campaign day is here: Eat What You Want Day is a National U.S. awareness day that encourages individuals to eat whatever they want without having any regrets. Eat the double-decker hamburger and cheese fries, try new food, eat breakfast for dinner and go in for that second helping of ice cream. We live in a society where we are measured by how we look, how much we weigh, what dress size we buy and what we put into our bodies. Parents often shame each other for giving their kids fast food while social media makes us feel pressured to only consume a specific amount of calories each day, so we don’t “overdo” it. Eat What You Want Day is simply a fun day to explore your taste buds, try new food and break out of the box of calorie restriction that is dictated by our society.

A recent survey was taken, and Americans chose which foods they would consume daily if they didn’t have any guilty restrictions eating away at them. The following are the most common foods that Americans crave:

  • Pizza
  • Pasta
  • Hamburgers
  • Ice cream
  • Tacos or burritos
  • Chocolate
  • French fries
  • Donuts
  • Cake
  • Chips
  • Cheese
  • Cookies

Everything in moderation is okay

We live in a society where we taught to label foods as “good” or “bad” based on their nutritional value and calorie count when realistically everything in moderation is okay and is, good for you if it makes you feel good.

Eating disorders and balancing food

Eating disorders such as bulimia nervosa, anorexia nervosa and binge eating disorder all have a common ground: an obsession with body image, body weight, and food, however, these are not the underlying reasons that drive individuals to develop an eating disorder. Unhealthy emotional and mental trauma, past abuse, low self-esteem, poor coping skills, self-injury, mental health disorders, and substance abuse disorder are all common underlying triggers for developing an eating disorder. Although food is not necessarily the culprit, learning to have a healthy relationship with food while in recovery can be challenging. Many individuals struggle with issues of self-control when it comes time to food and body image, blurring the lines between rigidity and chaos. Finding a healthy balance is critical to be successful in recovery.