There are some subtleties out there that have an impact on us regardless of whether we realize it or not. They are just words, but these words can send mixed messages and I think it’s good to bring them up. It all started a few weeks ago when I came across an article about the fact that Women’s Health Magazine was removing words and phrases such as “Bikini Body” and “Drop two sizes.” etc. from the pages of it’s magazine. They had already dropped words like “diet” and “shrink” but felt it was time to still make a few more changes. The reason? They explained below:
Dear “Bikini Body,”
You’re actually a misnomer, not to mention an unintentional insult: You imply that a body must be a certain size in order to wear a two-piece. Any body—every body—is a bikini body. You’ve got a shaming, negative undertone that’s become more than annoying. Listen, rocking a bikini does require confidence, but we’d rather focus on the greater benefits of getting a strong-as-hell core: running, surfing, dancing, climbing, being able to carry a 2-year-old up and down the stairs 10 times a day. When one reader said, “I hate how women’s magazines emphasize being skinny or wearing bikinis as the reason to be healthy,” it became so clear: We never want to be that type of women’s magazine. So, “Bikini Body,” see ya. Wouldn’t wanna be ya.
Sigh. Reading that just feels good. It’s so nice to see such strides being made and the impact that will continue to be made as a result.
There are other words though that I continue to see in the world of food and nutrition. The biggest culprits in this in my opinion are skinny and guilt free. They are thrown out there far too often and if you spend a few minutes on Pinterest you will see just what I am talking about.
To me this is similar to the concept as throwing around the term “bikini body.” It’s a way of differentiating foods as acceptable and unacceptable. It undermines our relationship with food and in turn is an affirmation that guilt and food go hand in hand. Using the word “skinny” along with any food slowly molds us to the thinking that the goal of eating is to do just that: to become skinny, to shrink. Imagine if the word “skinny” was swapped for the word “nourishing” in the title of a recipe or a magazine article. What is the connotation? It is a positive one, of course. It is inviting, welcoming and just feels good versus seeing the word “skinny.”
This may be something you never have really noticed. For our youth, for women who have struggled with body image, eating disorders and more, such subtleties are quite powerful. The words “guilt free” and “skinny” are a form of permission and then food becomes black and white with no gray area.
Just as we want to talk about our bodies as strong, beautiful and powerful, we also want to make sure the way we talk about food is the same. We all know the times we “confess” to eating so “bad” or punish ourselves for what we have eaten. This comes from this way of thinking around food and putting it into categories in which if we eat from category 1, we feel good about ourselves, but if we eat from category 2, then we only feel shame. And then when we see words such as skinny and guilt free/no guilt as adjectives for food, well, it only reaffirms what we believe.
So think about it. Think about how you talk about food, think about the recipes and magazines you come across. Are they talking about food in a positive light or are they just continuing to pull in negative feelings around food. Maybe just a little awareness will change the way you look at such words and perhaps you will choose not to buy into the lure of such words.
Now it’s time to eat!
There is nothing like a lazy weekend morning full of coffee, breakfast and maybe even some snuggles with the pup. It’s my ideal kind of Saturday morning. They don’t come often, but when they do, I savor every bit of it.
I saw a recipe for a stuffed French Toast recipe recently and it brought on quite the craving! Of course, I had to make my own version. I have mentioned the versatility of cashews a lot lately. I had some soaked cashews leftover from the Strawberry Chip Cashew Ice Cream the other week so I thought I would play around and boy am I glad I did!
A little bit of almond milk, cashews and cinnamon create a thick cream that is perfect for eating straight off the spoon or adding to your stuffed French Toast of course! Making this recipe is a lot like making a grilled cheese sandwich. It was so much more simple than I imagine. I used the sprouted grain Ezekiel Bread and my husband actually quite likes it. You can really use any bread you like.
I hope you are looking forward to this weekend’s breakfast. I sure am–and I always love breakfast for dinner too!
- 1 cup raw cashews soaked overnight
- 1/4 c plus 2 T milk of choice
- 1 medjool date pitted
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp pure maple syrup
- Dash of sea salt
- 8-10 pieces of bread
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 c milk of choice
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp cinnamon
In a food processor, combine all ingredients for the cashew cream and process until smooth and creamy. (you may need to stop a few times to scrape down the sides of the processor.)
Spread about cream over one piece of bread to cover. Place another piece of bread on top to create a sandwich with the cream in the middle.
Repeat for other pieces of bread and set aside.
Whisk the ingredients together for the French Toast in a mixing bowl.
Heat a griddle, pan or skillet to medium high.
Dunk each side of one of the French Toast "sandwiches" and then place on lightly oiled pan.
Cook each side until a golden brown (about 2-3 minutes each side, but this will vary)
Enjoy with your favorite French Toast fixings such as berries, syrup, sliced pecans and more!