Body Trust™ Insights with Jamie Lee
We return to our regular Body Trust™ Insights to hear from the lovely, Jamie Lee, nutrition and intuitive eating counselor over at HealthFull Nutrition. Thank you for sharing your wisdom, Jamie!
Jamie Lee RD, LD, is trained in the intuitive eating model, a non-diet approach, allowing you to become the expert of your own body, rather than diet rules. Food is viewed as a tool, not a weapon, to fuel and satisfy the body and mind. Jamie encourages pleasurable, mindful meals, a concept lost in our diet-obsessed society. Over time, eating no longer swings from restricting to overeating, and normalized eating is established. In addition, with over a decade of nutrition coaching experience, Jamie offers medical nutrition therapy to support blood sugar control, improved energy, heart health, better digestion, and much more.
Jamie holds a B.S. from Portland State University in Community Health Education and two years post-graduate work in Dietetics from the University of Northern Colorado. She is a Certified Wellness Coach through the American College of Sports Medicine, a Certified Intuitive Eating Counselor and a member of Dietitians in Integrative & Functional Medicine. She’s collaborated with large corporate wellness programs including, Regence Blue Cross Blue Shield, Oregon Athletic Club and Fred Meyer. Jamie is trained in Motivational Interviewing, promoting a client-centered relationship that is collaborative and allows the client to choose the elements of treatment they believe will be most effective to support their efforts.
We all deserve and are worthy of radical self-acceptance.
- What led you to Health at Every Size® and Intuitive Eating?
Early on, like many young men and women, I was sold a lie: thinness equals happiness. I left high school determined to remedy sadness and body dissatisfaction through weight loss.
After my undergraduate work in Community Health Education, I became a director of multiple corporate weight loss programs and soon experienced two harsh realities: one, diets don’t work and two, those who reach their “ideal weight” are not gifted happiness.
I began to see that joy was not robbed by the “extra” pounds but by constant thoughts surrounding food and body, often fueled by dieting, and an inaccurate perception of self-worth. Many clients shared, I wake up thinking about food and go to bed thinking about food.
When weight loss did occur – typically short-term – their focus on weight loss shifted to a fixation on hanging skin, unacceptable weight distribution or some other flaw. They still were not happy because their relationship with food and themselves had not changed.
Soon after I had that aha moment, I discovered both Intuitive Eating and Health At Every Size®. I immediately took to it, because it connected all the dots for me, and had science to back it up.
- What has surprised you the most as you have learned to accept yourself?
I was surprised to discover self-acceptance went beyond body image. By accepting myself and letting go of the comparison game, it ushered in awareness of my own unique beauty, accomplishments, and gifts. No more she (he) is a “better” runner, writer, cook, joke teller… For me, self-acceptance is contentment.
- What are three aspects you feel are the most important to remember when moving toward radical self-acceptance?
1. We all deserve and are worthy of radical self-acceptance.
2. Mindfulness is a valuable tool during this process. For someone struggling with body acceptance, the simple act of pausing and bringing awareness to the preoccupation or negative body thoughts can disrupt old, unconscious patterns of thinking. Mindfulness also brings awareness to what our body and thoughts are telling us, without judgment. Then gives the opportunity to respond kindly and prompt self-care.
3. One thing that resonated with me, as I’ve practiced radical acceptance, is acceptance doesn’t always equate to agreement. I may not like or agree with rejection; however, becoming angry and reactive is not productive. And avoidance can lead to destructive behaviors, e.g. binge eating, compulsive shopping, working to exhaustion. The take away being: acceptance may be painful initially, but prevents the long-term damage of pushing away the pain.
- What is your favorite part of your body? How do you celebrate it?
After giving birth to two healthy, energetic boys, I developed a stronger appreciation for my whole body. Although parts shifted and settled in different areas, spider veins appeared and other unexpected body changes happened, the capacity of the body to adapt to a growing baby, endure labor and recover was a testament to the amazing strength of my body. I celebrate it by caring for it, nourishing it, moving it, resting it and listening to its needs.
- What is your favorite food and how do you like to enjoy it?
I appreciate fresh, quality foods paired together to create a mouthful of flavor and textures. My favorite recipe right now is roasted root vegetables and kale, tossed with some maple syrup and vinegar, over Parmesan polenta. Another favorite is nuts and salted caramel covered in dark chocolate.
I’m also a huge fan of Portland’s culinary scene. My family and I eat out at least once a week, a few favorites include Tasty N Sons, Pok Pok, and Piazza Italia.
- What inspires and renews your dedication to your process when you need it the most?
I am inspired and recharged when clients, who’ve hit diet rock bottom, discover self-acceptance, body trust and nourishment after years of shame and anxiety around food and body. The experiences continue to prove our bodies are our allies. When we stop manipulating our bodies, nourish and honor them, we can rest easy, knowing our bodies will take care of our health and wellbeing.
- Radical self-acceptance means…
For me, “The Guest House”, by Rumi, defines radical-acceptance: to befriend our experiences, thoughts, and emotions, rather than avoid or suppress them. This allows for awareness, clarity and inner peace.
THE GUEST HOUSE
This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorable.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.
Be grateful for whatever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.
- What books, music or websites inspire you right now?
I have a stack of books on my nightstand at all times, and I am constantly adding to the list of books and scientific resources to read. The ones currently at the top of the stack include: Daring Greatly by Brene Brown; Body Respect by Linda Bacon and Lucy Aphramor; Eating by the Light of the Moon by Anita Johnson.
- Favorite quote or poem?
“Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.”
~Ralph Waldo Emerson