Why people keep dieting despite logic or rationality

“When I’m thin, people will take me seriously at work, look up to me, and I’ll get promoted.

“When I’m thin, everyone will think I’m cool and attractive and want to be my friend.”

“When I’m thin, everyone will want to date me, and I’ll finally find the person I’m ‘supposed’ to be with (and I’ll never have to worry about losing them).”

“When I’m thin, I’ll never feel lonely, rejected, or scared about my future—because I’ll have the friends, the family and the white picket fence.”

The fantasy that we can diet our way into safety, love, power, and acceptance—and diet our way out of judgment, powerlessness, oppression or rejectionunderlies almost all body-image or “food issues” to some degree or another, and makes dieting the true compulsion so difficult to give up.

No one tries to control their weight in a vacuum—we only try to control our weight…in an attempt to control something else entirely.

The problem is…the fantasy never meets the reality…

Most diets become binges, rebound weight gain, weight cycling, etc.; and those who are “successful” at weight suppression often suffer even more brutal physical and psychological damages on account of long-term deprivation.

Irrespective of weight, we find we’re not able to control the opinions of others…we still struggle in relationships; we still struggle with finances or career choices, or family-life challenges.

As it turns out, you can’t diet your way out of pain or uncertainty.

(God knows you’ve been trying long enough.)

At the end of the day, recovering from “feeling crazy around food” is about learning to face life’s toughest challenges head-on—rather than sit tirelessly in the delusion that you can diet your way out of them.