1. the fact or state of having committed an offense, crime, violation, or wrong, especially against moral or penal law; culpability
He admitted his guilt.
2. a feeling of responsibility or remorse for some offense, crime, wrong, etc., whether real or imagined.
3. conduct involving the commission of such crimes, wrongs, etc.
To live a life of guilt.
Guilt free. Free of guilt. That would the opposite of guilt.
Not having committed an offense or wrong. Not feeling remorse over a wrong, crime or offence.
Guilt Free Dessert
Guilt Free Pizza
Guilt Free Super Bowl Snacks
Guilt Free Holiday Dishes
You get the picture because we see it all the time.
On Pinterest, Facebook, health blogs, food blogs, women’s magazines, fitness magazines, cook books. Everyone’s touting Guilt Free whatevers.
I love healthier versions of less than nourishing dishes but how about we stop putting emotional labels on foods. Especially ones that make us feel like we are a bad person.
Food should not be making us feel bad about ourselves.
Food does trigger pleasure centers in our brain because it means energy, life and nourishment. And yes, this can be dangerous with our modern food conveniences, super sized sugar portions and dislike in dealing with tough emotions. Nevertheless food was never meant to make us feel guilt.
If eating a food brings up feelings of guilt we must believe we are doing something wrong.
...Maybe it comes from an unhappiness with our body, or a fear that the food will change our outside appearance.
Whatever it is marketers know these nagging feelings, which is why recipes and foods are often promoted by promising us they won’t make us fat, they actually burn fat, or are low in calories.
Deep down we know there’s more to the guilt though. We know that ‘guilty’ food is not healthy, that the food is not nourishing and not kind to our body.
Healthier versions of traditional junk foods that usually have additives, chemicals, heaps of sugar, unhealthy oils, and refined flours are awesome and exciting! It’s great that people are thinking creatively and coming up with yummy recipes for foods that are usually anything but healthy.
Here’s the bottom line: the language around food needs to change.
Let’s stop titling food with negative words like ‘guilt,’ and quit describing them in ways that vilify fats, and calories. Stop promoting them in terms of weight, only furthering poor body image and a disordered relationship with our food. Stop using terminology that furthers emotional eating.
These emotional words and descriptions may sell more products because they catch our attention, but do we really want to promote something that is damaging to self-image and emotional health?
Let's bring pleasure back to food and repair our relationship to it.
First by taking the emotional negativity out, and then asking the tough question. Why can't we say no to a food that is really not healthy?
If a food is making you feel guilt take a step back and question what is causing you to eat it and where is that guilt coming from?
Sadness? Stress? Sugar addiction? Fungal overgrowth? Peer pressure? Do you not want to be singled out? Do you feel hopeless? Does it feel like the food may fill an empty part of you...besides your stomach?
Instead of distracting ourselves let’s make the harder choice of facing our feelings.
If you know why and still want to have that food than I encourage you to do it without guilt.
Because guilt will only create a more negative affect on your body. Guilt means stress and stress decreases your ability to digest, hinders your immune system, affects your detoxification and causes a release of cortisol (which can signal your body to hold onto fat).
So just freaking enjoy it if you want it and don’t feel guilt. Enjoying it means to savor, actually taste it, sit in the pleasure of it and stop when you have had enough. (to be clear, it doesn’t mean eating it like it’s your last meal and you haven’t seen food in 5 days.)
Yeah it’s hard. I am still working on it. But I invite you to join me in taking pleasure in food. Removing the guilt, and practicing self love by choosing foods that nourish us while eating mindfully.
PS. Do you ever experience guilt around food? Have you thought about why? Tell me about it in the comments below!....because I love to hear from you. :)