Undoing our relationship to food with Cassandra Cacheiro
Cassandra Cacheiro, model and photographer, tells us about her journey with food. This long and winding road reminds us that our relationship to it is constantly evolving and that the watchwords remain patience and indulgence. A look back to a conversation filled with benevolence.
How would you describe your relationship with food?
I’d say this relationship is now quite stable. I feed my body what it needs without restriction and second thought. It is a relationship I finally have control over.
How has it evolved?
My relationship with food was very difficult for a long time. From adolescence, I followed many diets to lose weight; I was doing everything to lose some. As soon as I finished one, there was always a moment when I felt that I had failed because I did not achieve my goal. When I happened to reach it, my weight would eventually go back up, sometimes even more than I had lost. I calculated my calories for a long time, meticulously controlled everything I ate, what I was allowed to eat and what was forbidden. For a few years now, I can say that this is no longer the case. I listen to my desires, my body and the signals it sends me.
How was the process of undoing and rebuilding your relationship with food?
This journey definitely wasn’t linear. 5 years ago, I consulted a nutritionist who made me a food plan. I thought it was a healthy way to eat but quickly realized it was just another way to diet. Certain foods were forbidden to me, and everything was about restriction. Discovering a body acceptance movement on social media helped me a lot to love my body, to no longer punish it. The concept of intuitive eating has also guided me enormously throughout this process. Reading Christy Harrisson’s book Anti Diet and her podcast that talks about this topic have been life changing and helped me understand how my relationship to food has had a terrible effect on my life for so long. I am proud to say that today I can have a healthy and easy relationship with food.
Do you have any tips or advice to help someone who would like to rethink their relationship with food?
I highly recommend exploring the intuitive eating approach. Read up on the subject and listen to podcasts. But the most important advice I would give would be to be patient and kind to yourself, it’s a relationship that can have its ups and downs and that’s okay too.
How do you think we should talk about food? What would be a healthy way to approach this subject?
We should talk about food as an activity that brings happiness and pleasure. There is nothing better than eating a good meal and being able to share it with people you love.
Why is it important to talk about it this way?
Because doing the opposite ruins lives. The diet culture is still too permeated in our society, and it affects a huge part of the population, especially women from a very young age. It would be nice if our children didn’t have to go through this burden like many of us have.
Have you participated in any projects that have helped you rebuild this relationship?
As a photographer I have met a lot of people in recent years. These encounters and the resulting discussions have greatly helped the relationship I have with my body. If I respect my body and love it, I will automatically feed it the right way and take care of it.
How do you incorporate food into your wellness routine?
I incorporate food into my wellness routine by simply listening to my body and its desires.
To learn more about Cassandra and her work, find our conversation with her on our podcast, Anchor Point (this interview is in French).