Elsie Hogfat

Lagom Food. Lagom Philosophy.

Oats (II)

In my first instructions to you about oats, my writing is a little misleading.

As you know, I will eat oats myself, when I feel like it, in my regular diet, as well as potato, yellow split peas, those red lentils you have always loved so much, rice.   These things I will that you avoid, for now.

And you know, I will even eat a slice of bread,  or cake on occasion, if I feel like it.  Or a glass of beer.  So… I see I need to clarify a little.

Yes, I am concerned about the volatility and instability of your blood in relation to sugar, of which oats has plenty!  Still, the issue of your skittish blood sugar is really just part of the greater issue which is the fact that your natural connection to your body has been weakened by twenty years of damaging dietary practices.

And I am hopeful that if you stick with me on this you will in time develop in relation to your body, the same level of trust and friendship I have with mine.

Which brings us to the key to what I am trying to do with you, Lovely.

Most girls and young women these days lose connection with their body through dieting for weight loss.   You did not fall for that stuff easily.  It was a great relief to me that thanks to your excellent education, you understood the most important messages from feminism, and were able to summon enough confidence in yourself as a human being value to correctly evaluate the merits or otherwise of all pursuits of beauty including weight loss.   You valued yourself for your intelligence and skills.  You despised vanity.  You were able to recognise that happening to conform to an arbitrary and fleeting beauty standard was no accomplishment and was often a nuisance.     It was a great relief to me because I had already noticed your excessive seeking of approval, a behaviour that can indicate vulnerability to many malignant forces at work against the will, strength and confidence of young women.   “Riots not Diets” you said… and this bravado was excellent protection for you for many years, when many of your schoolmates were already damaging their bodies through dieting.  Also gratifying to me was that your understanding did not undermine your appreciation of your own actual physical beauty,  and your enjoyment of experimenting with your appearance.  I was proud of you for your intelligence, compassion and ideals.

Unfortunately, the very same qualities of intelligence and compassion and idealism… that protected you from dieting for so long,  led you to the very same end.  Your relationship with your body was damaged by the numerous attempts you made to keep a vegetarian diet for ethical reasons.  It doesn’t matter to your body that you are denying your body food for ethical rather than spurious health reasons or in pursuit of an ideal of beauty.  Your body recognises the deprivation of the food it needs.  Worse that the food is right there on the table, and the body can smell it, and you with your ideas are no longer your body’s friend.  The body, betrayed repeatedly, loses trust.  The sacred relationship (like that of rider & horse)  is damaged.  Communication is damaged.  Rebellion is likely.

I see I have left oats far behind … waving in the field.  To be continued…


  Oats (III) « Elsie Hogfat wrote @

[…] April 6, 2010 at 7:53 pm · Filed under Philosophy I should not have begun with oats!  And once having made the mistake, why did I then repeat it? […]

[…] Filed under Philosophy and tagged: Oats I know, I know.  I have written on oats, not once or twice, but three times already without managing to get to the […]

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