Why are our relationships with our bodies so complex? How to reconcile with him?
To answer these questions, Noëlle Châtelet undertook, more than twenty years ago, a long journey around the body. The essay that inaugurated this journey, “Le Corps à corps Culinaire”, in which he addresses the tumultuous relationship between the body, food and our fantasies, has just been reissued in Seuil, as has “Corps sur mesure” (1) , a survey in the country of cosmetic surgery that gives voice to patients and surgeons. The opportunity to meet an author who, from his own experience, advances theories of rare audacity.
1 – Published in 1993 by Belfond, under the title “Trompe l’œil” and not found since then.
Our body does what it pleases. It asks for sweets when we try to go on a diet, it gets tired, it often differs from what we would like it to be… so much so that sometimes we consider it a foreign body, rather frightening. Why such a complicated relationship?
Noëlle Châtelet: First of all because of his uncontrollable demands that you underline, to which are added the illnesses that afflict him and remind us of our mortal condition. The body is the place of all dangers, but also of all pleasures. But our Christian civilization mistrusts pleasure: it associates it with guilt, with sin, and therefore with guilt. Even atheists unconsciously depend on this heritage. I knew a woman who was able to put on five pounds just by looking at cakes: guilt coupled with gluttony made her fat! Finally, education takes over from religious principles. The boy quickly understands that his body provides him with voluptuous sensations, but he will almost immediately be prevented from enjoying them: “It’s bad…” someone will tell him. However, I have the impression that today the desire for reconciliation with the body is stronger than ever.
Why this desire for reconciliation?
In the face of widespread violence in the world, we are led to search within ourselves for a peace that cannot be found elsewhere. Consequently, we try to make a pact with this organism: we entrust it to medicine, we consult nutritionists. To soften it without harassing it, we take it to thalassotherapy centers to be caressed and massaged. We choose soft and relaxing techniques, such as Chinese gymnastics.
In “Le Corps à corpsculinaire”, you explain that in addition to the body-machine, mechanics, other bodily realities coexist in us.
In my opinion, there is in us a constant body to body between three bodies: the organic body, a living machine, the fantasy body, dreamed, made of images that we forge internally, where the unconscious has its part, and finally the body instituted, the one we should have in terms of cultural norms, social conventions. It is this body that fashions, aesthetics, diet and behavior point to.
Isn’t this bodily plurality partly responsible for our difficulties with the body?
It is clear: the notion of “melee” implies the idea of a fight, of a war. However, we are forced to think and live these three bodies together. When we evoke the body of an individual, we are addressing his organism as well as his imagination and his social body. The “dining room”, for example, not only nourishes his biological body, he fantasizes about food, enjoys the pleasure he likes to share. But, in general, one of the organs tries to prevail over the other two. For people with eating disorders -anorexia or bulimia- it is the fantasy body that dominates: the anorexic does not see his body as it really is and wants to show that it is possible to live without eating and thus escaping the laws of the body-machine, the meal institution. Psychosomatic illnesses, without organic cause, that we all produce one day or another, are also the sign of the liberation of the phantom body from the body-machine.
What are the solutions to achieve peace?
You have to make compromises. When you like to eat well and you tend to be overweight but, at the same time, you dream of being skinny, you have to make a choice: it will be gluttony or thinness. You have to let go somewhere… Which requires careful listening to yourself: what is, for me, the most important thing? What gives me more pleasure?
You say that we have never talked about the body as much as today. Why ?
We need religiosity, spirituality. However, the values have been transferred from heaven to earth: the body is now the cult object par excellence. It has become the privileged messenger of the questions previously reserved for the soul: “Who am I? », « What can I be? ”…To write “Body to measure”, my book on cosmetic surgery, I researched specialized services. I met women and men, who apparently came there to solve problems related to the body, who in reality were looking for answers to deep questions about their being, their identity, old age and death, but also about love: I want to love, be loved, seem friendly… As if the body were the only material, the only vehicle within our reach to give voice to something that is in us and that we cannot express: and in particular, the need for a loving gaze.
What relationship do you have with your body?
I try to fix with him, I make sure he comes with me. If women resort to facelift it is because they feel betrayed by their body. They all complain of a gap between what they are inside and the image they see in the mirror. On the contrary, the idea of accompaniment is based on consent: yes to changes in the body, yes to old age. And I accompany these changes with a transformation of my being. I must admit that I am lucky to have a mother with whom I was able to talk about my successive transformations: from a girl to a young woman, from a woman to a mother. In fact, so far my body hasn’t betrayed me too much. Perhaps, one day, he will ask for more than he can give; maybe then I’ll feel betrayed…
So you live in perfect harmony with your body?
Of course not. I am even the specialist in small diseases that are not serious, unexplained and resistant to all treatments! These are normal rebellions of the body. He has things to express and I let him speak! My doctor even advises me to keep these diseases. In fact, I think that if it came to the end, I would risk developing more serious ones. According to Georg Groddeck, a contemporary of Freud who is credited with the paternity of modern psychosomatics, illness is a language that requires the dramatization of a symptom to express our being. At the University of Paris V, he leads a seminar for linguistics students on the topic: “The languages of the body in relation to food, aesthetics and illness”, three areas that illustrate very well how the body serves as a vehicle. For the soul
Do we then have to invent an accomplice dialogue with his body?
Yes, a constant dialogue, but one that will inevitably include moments of disagreement. This dialogue is the very proof that we are alive. For me, the body is a permanent spectacle that I never stop looking at and listening to. Which is not to say that he understands what he says better than others: he remains mysterious. If I had a general title for my literary work on the body, it would be “The Metamorphoses”: it is the passing moments that fascinate me the most. And essentially that of old age, which I will have to fulfill…
Take advantage of December foods for the sake of your immunity
Winter is mostly about curling up in bed with a hot chocolate and sleeping. This is the perfect season to relax. But with winter comes colds, coughs, and the flu. What our body needs during this time is a healthy, balanced diet that includes all the foods necessary to support our immune system. There are some simple ways to eat nutritious food to keep you warm and energized during the colder months. We’ve covered the most important ones in this article, along with some helpful winter nutrition tips.
Various vegetables and fruits of the month of December contain vitamin C.
December is a great time to stock up on vitamin C-rich fruits and vegetables. Citrus fruits like oranges and grapefruit are in season. As well as cruciferous vegetables like kale and Brussels sprouts. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that helps boost the immune system, making it an essential nutrient during cold and flu season. It not only helps fight infection, but also helps the body recover faster from illness. The next time you’re shopping for the winter months, be sure to include plenty of vitamin C-rich seasonal foods.
Don’t forget the super power of beets!!
Beetroot is one of the most amazing vegetables due to its versatility and nutrient density. They can be roasted, steamed, grilled, pickled, or even eaten raw. Plus, they’re packed with vitamins and minerals like potassium, iron, and vitamin C. But did you know that beets also have a superpower? They can help keep you healthy all winter long. In fact, they contain antioxidants that strengthen the immune system, such as betacyanin. The next time you’re not feeling well, try drinking some fresh beetroot juice or adding some to your stir-fry. You may find that this humble root vegetable is your new best friend during cold and flu season.
Dates and nuts are also seasonal foods!! Enjoy!
There is no question that walnuts and dates are among the most nutrient-dense foods you can eat. They’re packed with vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, and fiber, and make a great snack or addition to any meal. Eating nuts and dates can help you stay healthy in December:
- Walnuts and dates are an excellent source of antioxidants.
- The healthy fats in nuts and dates can help keep skin hydrated and supple.
- Eating nuts and dates can help boost your energy levels and keep you full longer.
- The fibers contained in these foods can contribute to good digestion.
With sweet dates and crunchy nuts, turn them into energy balls the whole family can enjoy.
Have you thought about putting together a 100% orange menu?! We give you a summary!
A delicious and nutritious fall feast can be made up of many delicious components. For breakfast, how about orange juice and papaya slices? A boost of energy with a rush of vitamins and nutrients to start the day off right. For lunch, enjoy a side salad with yams and orange or a roasted squash. Baking brings out the natural sweetness of the squash, and pairing it with a bit of savory spice makes it a perfect starter. For the main course, why not try a hearty carrot soup? This dish is sure to please vegans and carnivores alike. And for dinner, try the grilled salmon with a side of roasted papaya and yams. There you have it, it’s a great way to enjoy December meals. So don’t hesitate and give it a try! With a little creativity, you can plan other red, green and white meals…why not?
Consume hot spices to combat common ailments.
It’s no secret that spices like cinnamon, turmeric, and saffron can do wonders for your health. But did you know that these spices can also help you warm up in winter? Cinnamon helps improve blood circulation, which makes it perfect for cold days. Turmeric is a powerful anti-inflammatory, which can help relieve aches and pains. And saffron is a natural mood booster that helps chase away the winter blues. Add these spices to your meals and you will be surprised at how comforting they can be.
Baked potatoes with skin: a delight for the stomach and a plus of polyphenols for immunity.
We all know that potatoes are packed with nutrients like potassium and fiber, but did you know that they can also help boost your immune system? In fact, potatoes with their skin on contain polyphenols, plant compounds with proven anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Studies have shown that polyphenols can help reduce the risk of several diseases, including cancer and heart disease. Therefore, baked potatoes are not only delicious, but also good for health. So go ahead and enjoy that extra serving of baked potatoes. Your stomach and your immune system deserve it.
5 harmful and little-known effects of sugar on health
Sugars are a type of simple carbohydrate found naturally in certain foods and drinks. They are also an additive in some foods and drinks. Excessive sugar consumption can lead to health problems, such as increased risk of weight gain, diabetes, tooth decay, etc. Many healthy food products, such as dairy products, vegetables, and fruits, naturally contain sugars. The sugar in these foods makes them taste sweeter. It is important to include these foods in your diet, as they come with a variety of other nutrients that provide valuable health benefits. However, manufacturers tend to add sugar to foods like cereals and cakes, as well as some beverages. It is these added sugars, or free sugars, that cause health problems. Unlike foods and drinks that naturally contain sugar, those with added sugar have no nutritional value. They are also a poor source of energy because the body digests added sugar very quickly. Excessive consumption can lead to long-term health problems.
This article looks at five reasons why added sugars are bad for you.
1. Lack of nutritional value
Sugar is an empty calorie. Adding it to food and drinks drastically increases their caloric content without providing any nutritional benefits. The body usually digests these foods and drinks quickly. This means that they are not a good source of energy. Products that naturally contain sugar are different. For example, fruits and dairy products contain natural sugars. The body digests these foods at a slower rate, making them a long-lasting source of energy. These products also tend to contain other nutrients. For example, they also contain fiber and a number of vitamins and minerals. The average adult in the West consumes about 308 calories from added sugars per day. This is much higher than the recommendations that recommend 100 calories from added sugars for women and 150 calories for men. Consuming empty calories negates the health benefits of consuming other foods and beverages that have nutritional value. It can also cause imbalances, as nutrient deficits can lead to other health complications.
2. Weight gain
Weight gain is a significant risk of excessive dietary sugar consumption. In most cases, sugary foods and drinks are high in calories. Excessive consumption of these products leads to weight gain, even with regular exercise. There is strong evidence showing that excess sugar in the diet is a cause of weight gain. Since foods with added sugars are generally digested faster by the body, they don’t suppress hunger for long. This can lead to eating more regularly throughout the day and a higher total calorie intake.
There is also some evidence to suggest that sugar may affect the biological pathways that regulate hunger. Leptin is a hormone that regulates hunger by determining how much energy the body needs. Disruption of leptin function can lead to weight gain and obesity. A study conducted in rats found that a diet high in fat and sugar could lead to leptin resistance. Leptin resistance occurs when the body no longer responds properly to leptin. The study authors found that eliminating sugar from the diet reversed leptin resistance. Another 2014 study found that sugary drinks may be a particular problem for leptin resistance.
It is important to note that sugar alone does not cause weight gain or obesity. Sugar is one cause among others. Being overweight or obese is the result of a complex interaction between diet, physical activity, genetics, and social and environmental factors. However, limiting the amount of sugar in the diet is one of the easiest ways to prevent weight gain.
Drinking sodas or other sugary drinks can increase the risk of developing diabetes. There is a link between the consumption of sugary drinks and the development of type 2 diabetes.
It is not true that sugar alone causes diabetes. Any diet high in calories can lead to type 2 diabetes. However, in most cases, diets high in sugar are high in calories. This can increase the risk of diabetes.
Sugary drinks are particularly problematic. A meta-analysis of data from 310,819 people found that people with high consumption of sugary drinks had a 26% higher risk of type 2 diabetes than people with low consumption. The study defined “high consumption” as between one and two sugary drinks per day.
4. Tooth decay
Sugar consumption can cause cavities, which can lead to cavities. After eating sugar, bacteria in the mouth form a thin layer of dental plaque on the teeth. These bacteria react with sugars in food and drinks. This reaction triggers the release of an acid that damages the teeth. The body may repair some of this damage on its own. However, over time, a high-sugar diet causes lasting damage. This can lead to tooth decay. Cavities are leaky holes that form in the teeth.
Limiting the consumption of foods high in sugar is an effective way to prevent cavities.
5. Heart disease
Diets high in sugar can increase the risk of heart disease. The results of a 15-year study suggest that people whose diets contain a lot of added sugar are much more likely to die of heart disease than people whose diets contain little added sugar. Again, research suggests that sugary drinks may be particularly problematic in increasing the risk of heart disease. This association could be explained by the fact that sugary drinks are high in calories, have no effect on hunger, and provide insufficient energy. Although there is a clear link, more research will be needed to better understand the relationship between sugar and heart disease.
How to recognize hidden sugar
Added sugars can appear in many surprising products. Checking the contents of foods before buying them is one way to avoid added sugars. However, on some food labels it’s hard to tell if they contain added sugar, as there are many different names for it.
Here are some examples of other names for added sugar:
high fructose corn syrup
evaporated cane juice
To maintain a healthy diet, it is best that men consume no more than 36 grams (g) of added sugar per day, and women consume no more than 25 g per day.
This is the recommendation of the trusted source AHAT. Currently, the average person in the United States consumes much more than these limits.
Sugar is not unhealthy in and of itself. However, consuming a natural source of sugar is healthier than consuming added sugars. Too much sugar in the diet can cause a variety of conditions, including heart disease, weight gain, and diabetes. To be aware of added sugars in food products, it is important to read labels carefully.
Three good reasons to eat a croissant first thing in the morning even if you are on a diet
When it comes to breakfast pastries, croissants are definitely at the top of the list. Flaky, buttery, and delicious, it’s hard to resist, especially in the morning. However, if you’re trying to take care of your figure, you may be wondering if a croissant is really the best option. Here are three good reasons to continue enjoying your favorite breakfast, even if you’re on a diet.
A plain croissant is relatively low in calories.
A plain croissant only contains about 220 calories, which is lower than other breakfast options like muffins or bagels. Plus, croissants help you enjoy a gourmet breakfast that will fill you up all morning. This will help you avoid snacking later in the day.
There’s no shame in indulging once in a while.
Crossing the line and indulging your cravings for a day will only boost your metabolism. Think of your indulgence as a “cheat meal” that bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts make to boost their metabolism and make their bodies burn even more.
One study found that dieters who eat a 700-calorie breakfast lose more weight than those who skip that meal. So if you’re looking to rev up your metabolism, eating a croissant early in the morning might be just what you need. Just be sure to pair it with healthy ingredients, like eggs and avocado, to ensure you’re getting all the nutrients you need.
Depriving yourself to hold the line would only make you succumb to covetous desires.
For fear of derailing your diet, you deprive yourself of your favorite foods and this only affects your mood. You become more irritable and anxious, which is of little benefit to your mental or physical health. You can maintain your ideal weight or lose weight by controlling portions and eating your food. However, if you crave a croissant on a Sunday morning, grab one and balance out your subsequent meals or engage in some high-intensity activity. You deserve to take a break and treat yourself however you see fit.
What other false enemies can we afford from time to time?
When we try to lose weight, many of us immediately eliminate all starches from our diets. However, this can be detrimental to our health. Our bodies need carbohydrates for energy, and complex carbohydrates like starches are an important part of a balanced diet. The key is to choose the right starches and consume them in moderation. Whole wheat bread, pasta, and rice are good options. These foods are high in fiber and nutrients, and can help us feel full throughout the day. When we cut calories, it’s important to make sure we’re still getting the nutrients our bodies need. By including healthy starches in our diet, we can achieve this.
Many people think that fat is taboo when it comes to losing weight, but that is not the case. In fact, our body needs fat to function properly. The key is to choose healthy fats that support our weight loss goals instead of sabotaging them. One way to do this is to cook with olive oil instead of butter. Olive oil is lower in saturated fat and contains heart-healthy monounsaturated fats.
Another option is to eat more fish. Fish like salmon and tuna are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to aid weight loss. Finally, nuts and seeds are also excellent sources of healthy fats. Just be sure to choose unsalted and unroasted varieties for best results. By incorporating these healthy fats into our diet, we can achieve our weight loss goals without sacrificing our nutritional needs.
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