So our first take on telling Nina and Randa's acne story definitely didn't go as we had planned. But instead of wallowing in the shame and sadness of being misunderstood, we thought why don't we take what felt like negativity/hate at first and see it as our community's constructive feedback instead? Lou and I want to be brave enough to learn from our mistakes and see if we can share their acne journey in a way that is helpful, not harmful. I hope this video resonates on a much more personal level and that you can understand why healing disease with lifestyle changes is something that Lou and I feel so strongly about.
In the video, I mentioned that I would include a lot of resources in a blog post so that someone who was curious about the low-fat oil free plant based lifestyle could find out more information. I hope you enjoy all the different perspectives below:
Plant Based Resources
Plant Based Doctors:
Dr. T Colin Campbell
Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn
Dr. John McDougall
Dr. Michael Greger
Dr. Neal Barnard
The China Study by Dr. T Colin Campbell
Whole by Dr. T Colin Campbell
Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease by Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn
The Engine 2 Diet by Rip Esselstyn
How Not To Die by Dr. Michael Greger
The Starch Solution by Dr. John McDougall
The Pleasure Trap by Alan Goldhamer and Douglas J. Lisle
The other topic that we mentioned in the video was eating disorders. As someone who has dealt with this first hand, I know how toxic this disease is and how it can take over your entire existence. Even if you think you’ve overcome your food and body image issues, it is very easy for disordered eating to creep back into your life if you are not careful, if you have not done the sufficient mental work to move past these negative thoughts and behaviors. And in fact, sometimes healthy eating or in this case a low fat oil free plant based diet can serve as a mask for self-destructive behavior.
So I wanted to also include some of my favorite resources and tips that helped me overcome years of eating disorder and many more years suffering from toxic diet culture and disordered eating.
8 Keys to Recovery from an Eating Disorder by Carolyn Costin and Gwen Schubert Grabb
Food Psych - a podcast by Christy Harrison
Unfollow anyone who makes you feel bad about your body, your lifestyle, anything that brings you down even if it is me and Lou. And instead fill your feed with uplifting voices that you resonate. I recommend following body positive activists like - BodyPosiPanda, Jameela Jamil, i_weigh, Iskra Lawrence
I don’t think it is possible to start changing your lifestyle to something that is restrictive while you are trying to recover from an eating disorder. It is far to triggering and in the end mental health comes before everything in my opinion. Find a psychologist you trust and can open up to. Try to find family members or close friends that you can confide in. The shame around eating disorders and body image is something that way more people than you realize struggle with and you are not alone.
While I believe there is a way to separate adhering to a certain diet for health reasons and toxic diet culture, this is a VERY fine line to walk. It takes a great deal of trust in your ability to honor your true needs whether that is answering hunger cues, food cravings, emotional turmoil that surfaces, and everything that life throws your way. In the end it is about tuning into your body, which can be very hard to do. So again, I don’t recommend a whole food plant based diet to someone at the beginning of their eating disorder recovery road, but if you trust yourself to give your body all the calories it needs—to love your shape no matter what size it is, to stop any self-destructive behavior—then maybe this could be an option for you.
This was a hard post for me to write and to click publish on. While I have found the strength to open up about my eating disorder to Lou, close friends and family, and also now on our weekly newsletter on occasion, that community feels safe and filled with people that love and support both me and Lou. Today to open up both on our Youtube Channel and here on the blog was really scary for me. But in the end of the day, my goal is for our channel to be a space of creative inspiration and a place of respite from so much negativity in the world. When I realized that something we made could have the potential to hurt people and definitely triggered a lot of people, well I knew I had to be more open with what I’ve gone through. And frame this acne treatment in a more nuanced way. Sometimes we feel constrained to make a short video that is easily digestible on Youtube, but this is complex topic that needed more time, so I hope you have the patience to watch the whole story once more. Thank you for all your support, even if you didn’t like this video at all.
* the book section included Amazon affiliate links, which means we might make a tiny percentage if you buy the book but you don’t pay anything extra :)