There’s a great post up at Shapely Prose about unrestricted eating. It resonated with me, though not so much about the eating.
The point is about the meaning of ‘unrestricted’. People who Restrict their eating with a capital R, i.e. diet, sometimes seem to think as if were they, or anyone else, not to diet, their eating would be entirely unrestricted, and they’d binge constantly.
Whereas in fact, people not on diets – people even without any ‘dieting-consciousness’, any habit of thinking ‘oh no I shouldn’t‘, eat a perfectly mundane amount. They see things that they’d like to eat, but for various reasons don’t eat them – like, they’re full, or it would be inconvenient, or they’re busy, or they are going to eat something else soon, etc.They can, as the author, Fillyjonk, puts it, think about eating something, without eating it – they can afford to “decriminalize [their] thoughts about food”.
But dieting-consciousness can lead people to associate the lack of Restriction (diets) with the lack of restriction (not doing absolutely everything that crosses your mind). As commenter Ailbhe says, “People Can Be Trusted To Look After Themselves Given Half A Chance – Nation In Shock”.