The Religion of Thinness

The Religion of Thinness

It’s hard to feel at home in a body that’s constantly under surveillance

– Michelle Lelwica, ThD

Ain’t that the truth!?

The most poignant book I read in 2018 was The Religion of Thinness: Satisfying the Spiritual Hungers Behind Women’s Obsession with Food and Weight by Michelle Lelwica, ThD. It articulates what’s happening in our society around women and body image with such precision, that we believe every single one of us should be required to read it before graduating from the school of the woke woman.

We wanna toss a question your way right now though: how many times have you tried to lose weight?

How many minutes, hours, days, weeks, months and years of your life have you spent preoccupied with how you look and trying to shrink your body?

How many moments have you missed not being fully present because you felt self-conscious?

How many mornings have turned to shit because you can’t find anything to wear?

How many events were you unable to enjoy because you hated how you looked?

If you’re anything like us, you probs don’t want to think about that now do you?

A lot of us spend our entire lives struggling with our weight, missing all the good stuff and writhing around in the mental pain of hating our bodies and wishing we could change them.

We collectively spend billions, with a B, trying to lose weight. That’s more than Beyonce’s estimated net worth.

What we’ve come to believe over here, is that when we find ourselves in that place of hating our bodies and obsessing about food and/or working out, what we’re really searching for, is peace.

We’re searching for the antidote to the nagging discontent of simply being human. We want to feel healthy and happy and free. We want to feel connected to and loved by the people around us. We want to feel a sense of purpose and meaning in our lives.

And we also wouldn’t mind a casual sense of security in the world of Twitter and Facebook and the 24-hour news cycle of impending doom.

You know, if that’s not too much to ask.

But those things can be tricky. And a lot of times, it’s easier to simply turn to what Lelwica calls The Religion of Thinness.

And it truly is just that. Complete with the myths, rituals, idols, morality, community and promise of salvation that you’d find in any major, organized religion. Bonus if you were raised Catholic (like we were) and feel right at home cloaked in shame at a cellular level.

Side note about Catholicism, ever noticed that literally the downfall of man, started because one woman, Eve, just had to have herself a damn snack?

Is it any wonder we feel such shame around food? But, we digress.

Shit is bonkers, friend. B.O.N.K.E.R.S.

So what’s the solution?

Welp, glad you asked.

Couple of things to start: body awareness and cultural criticism.

Two practices that Lelwica encourages us all to do to in order to shift our ingrained, habitual inclination to pray at the altar of thin. They’re pretty potent, and cultural criticism especially can be really fun.

Picture yourself rolling your eyes at Gwyneth talking about $700 at-home “DIY” facials and how she stays fit on the cover of magazines. Like yeah we get it, Gwyneth, be a tall, blonde millionaire who sips moon dust for breakfast and it will solve all your problems. (Did we mention, we love rolling our eyes at Gwyneth?)

More seriously though, there’s lots of other stuff you can do to escape this oppressive religion. And having done it ourselves, we’d love to help you do it too.

Our program, Lighten Up, kicked off last night! It’s going to be an incredible 90 days of breaking out of old patterns, reconnecting to intuition and learning how to leave dieting and punishing exercise behind you for life. We’ll also be including exercises around body awareness and cultural criticism.

And look, It’s not a quick fix or a diet and it definitely doesn’t include any keto-compliant meals plans. So if that’s what you’re looking for, feel free to ignore us.

What we do provide though, are timeless personal growth principles around mindset and self-care and lifestyle that will help you make peace with food and move on with your life.

If that’s something you’d be interested in you can do 1 of 2 things:

  1. Shoot us an email at and say “I want more info about Lighten Up, please.”
  2. Answer these quick, application questions (no obligation to join in answering them).

Either way, we’ll hit you back ASAP with further details.

We are so goddamn pumped to help women escape this religion. And we’d be honored to help you too.

Come toward the light, friend. It’s way more fun over here.

P.S. – Here’s that application link again. It’s def the fastest way to get the deets.

There's more where that came from.

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Author Dana

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