I don't know how many times over the years that I've looked in the mirror and have felt ashamed of what I saw. Or put on 10 different outfits and found a flaw with how I looked in every single one. Or eaten way too much for dinner and spent days beating myself up for it.
Our relationship with food is so complex. It can be a source of pleasure, comfort, or anxiety. It can serve to heal and supply energy to our bodies, or it can cause an array of severe health conditions. I wholeheartedly believe that what you put in is what you get out. Both with the thoughts in your head and food choices on your plate.
Abigail Keeso has taken this idea to the next level with her series of e-books that teach how to eat cleaner with delicious (and gorgeous looking) meal plans. They come complete with itemized grocery lists, recipes, photos and tips on healthier living.
Before she became a registered nurse, she also struggled with body image and developed the notion that she wasn't good enough, or "skinny enough". And that if she only had a perfect body it would lead to the happiness she desired. But upon realizing that happiness is something that comes from within she decided to create That Clean Life, a wonderful resource to help people to form healthier habits and to see food as nourishment.
And I love how she admits in her blog that the relationship with her body and what she eats is still a work in progress. And that it's something that we have to commit to working at everyday. There is so much truth in this. One of her latest e-books, the Back On Track Challenge is just one of the many tools that she's created to help others with this struggle. Check out her yummy recipes and download the e-book for yourself!
Read Abagail's answers to the WCL questions to learn more about her thoughts on the topic:
What drives you? What's your mission?
My mission is to help people learn to love themselves and their bodies through eating good food. I believe that being in control of what you are feeding your body can have a huge impact on how you feel mentally, physically and spiritually. I know this because I’ve come from a place where I was completely out of control of what I was feeding my body and as a result, experienced a lot of feelings of self-hate. Eating clean is a simple concept that helped me turn it all around. Now I am driven to share it with the world.
Was there a key/favourite moment in your experience/journey so far that has made it all worth it?
I had a conversation with a woman who had just completed one of my clean eating challenges. She had followed the plan and stuck to it wholeheartedly and as a result was emitting such a positive sense of pride and accomplishment. I could tell that my challenge had put her on the path to self-love and I could really sense her genuine happiness. This is one key moment where I thought, “This is what it is all about”.
What is your favourite way to nourish yourself and your health?
Being active and getting a good sweat on. Nourishing my body with real food. Reminding myself that I am enough and living in the moment.
When do you feel the most beautiful?
When I think back to the times in my life where I have felt the most beautiful, it has always been when I have let go of what has happened in the past and the uncertainty of what may happen in the future. I feel the most beautiful when I am fully present in the moment.
If you had one piece of advice for the next generation of young women, what would it be?
Learn to love and accept yourself right now in this moment.
I’ve learned that life is too short to spend your days wishing you were different in some shape or form.
It’s a complete waste of time. Let it go and embrace who and what you are right now - imperfections and all.
Any additional notes/quotes you might want to share?
“Believe that you are enough. Because when we work from a place that says, ‘I’m enough’, then we stop screaming and start listening. We’re kinder and gentler to the people around us and we’re kinder and gentler to ourselves” - Brene Brown