What Does Going On A Diet Mean?
Back in the first grade, I remember being in my computer class learning about the dangers of the internet. The same old talk about not sharing your information and you can never take back what you said, even if you delete it.
During that class, I overheard two teachers talking together. One said, “You look so great, how did you manage to lose so much weight?”
The other replied, “I didn’t even exercise, I just went on a diet.”
Diet can mean a lot of things. It could be cutting your daily calorie intake. It could be cutting out certain foods or including new types of foods.
Regardless, a diet is just a change to what you eat. Usually, it’s supposed to aid you by losing or gaining weight.
It’s supposed to make you feel better right?
The Downfall Of A Diet and Restriction
What I have learned is that it can go two directions: a safe, healthy route or a dangerous, extreme route.
Sadly, I have seen people go down the wrong path. Even I have done some extreme dieting to achieve what I thought was good for me.
I have explained my relationship with food in a previous post, but during the time I was losing weight, I was put on a diet. I stopped eating foods like bread, pasta, high-sugar fruits, and sweet treats.
It started as cutting out processed food but went into cutting calories too. I started to count calories. First, it was just a healthy calorie deficit, but then I kept cutting to fewer calories a day.
I thought that 1300 was good enough. By the way, if someone tells you it is, IT”S NOT.
I even started intermittent fasting, where you eat for 8 hours and then fast for 16 hours.
I also took that to an extreme by eating from 12-5, then intensely working out at 9 pm, and not eating till 12 again. That’s 5 hours eating (2 meals) and running on an empty stomach for 19 hours.
During the day, I would avoid snacks and try to eat small meals. Then I would go and workout for a long time to “burn off” what I ate.
On school days, I would intentionally not eat until 12, even if I could not focus during class. After working out in the night, I would force myself to walk upstairs, even though I craved a snack.
I thought that having a large calorie deficit and exercising was good. That this fasting and diet I was doing was good for me.
Children Are Following Diets Too
What’s sad about today’s society is that more teenagers are trying to diet and are doing it in extreme measures.
On Tiktok (where I spend the majority of my day), I have seen so many “weight loss tips” where they say don’t eat this, don’t eat after 8, or eat under this amount of calories.
I even saw a girl, who looked to be 12 years old, saying she only ate 1200 calories a day. That’s the recommended calorie intake for a TODDLER.
There are so many young people using social media who read these “tips and tricks” for diets and believe that restricting yourself so much is the only way to be happy and “healthy.” Even I thought that eating less and not eating high-calorie foods would allow me to lose weight quickly.
We Are Just Kids
I realized that dieting being a teen was not needed when my parents told me that the younger you are, the more you need to eat.
When you are young, you are more active and your metabolism. You need solid food and my parents always told me that kids can digest anything.
Keeping in mind the food you eat and eating healthy is important. As teenagers though, you should not worry about how much you’re eating. Watching what you eat is good, but you shouldn’t restrict yourself to where you are sad and binging.
Enjoy your youth and eat what you want.
Being mindful is good, but dieting when you’re a teen is too much.
I wish I did not diet so much when I was 13 and growing. Sometimes my mom said dieting was the reason I stopped growing and stayed at 5’2.
Remember to eat well and eat whenever and whatever you want!