Your Foodemy: How To Accept Your Petunia (AKA Inner Fat Girl)

*This post is in no way directed to insult anyone. I am using the word “inner fat girl” to describe the eating habits that many of us face. Not as a personal description to anyone. If this phrase upsets anyone, I am very sorry. 

Any woman that has ever battled with her weight has gone to war with her inner fat girl. I have one, I have clients that have one, and perhaps you have one too.

These inner fat girls, they’re not imaginary friends. They are neither imaginary or friends, they are foodemies.

We wish desperately to remove ourselves from them, trying to disconnect.

Each time I think of my inner fat girl, I picture the scene in Peter Pan when he loses his shadow. I have wanted to lose this particular shadow for years, yet it just doesn’t seem to want to part from me.



One of my friends is so aware of her inner fat girl that she has given her a name. Anytime my friend falls off the “self control wagon” her foodemey comes out to say hello.

Meet Petunia

I mentioned above that I have one… though I haven’t named her in the past, sitting here thinking about her now makes me think she should be Petunia. Yes, this name fits her quite well.

What does she look like? She looks like me when I was at my heaviest… she is me when I was at my heaviest.

Not at my heaviest, but closest I could find. I’ll keep looking!

Petunia was the reason that I ate that entire dark chocolate orange while stuck in traffic. It was her fault that I have absolutely no control if there is trail mix within my reach, or cookies within a 10 step radius.

So how can we control her? How can we lessen the strength that she has? Decrease the turmoil that she has the potential of causing?

By accepting her. 

Stop Fighting Your Inner Fat Girl

The more you try to deny her existence the more strength she will have over your hunger, cravings and self control.

Give her a name even (you can barrow Petunia if you like). By doing so when you feel yourself reaching for yet another slice of pizza you can ask…

“Am I doing this because I want the pizza or because Petunia wants it?”

If you answer back that Petunia, then that’s your chance to take a breath and deny her that satisfaction.  Much like a parent would say no to a child who asked for a slice of cake before dinner.

It’s not about trying to deny her existance, or trying to fight her to the death, it’s about standing up and deciding that you’re in control… you’re the adult in this relationship and you have the power.

Your inner fat girl can not control you. You are not a puppet on a string. Am I right?

6 Tips To Be The Adult With Your Foodemy

1 – Who’s craving is it? As mentioned above, ask yourself who wants the second, third or even fourth helping? Accept that she is there, but say no to her when she asks for more.

2 – Don’t make excuses. Acknowledging your inner foodemy doesn’t mean that it is okay to give in. If you fall off the band wagon and then try to blame it on your Petunia then that simply makes her stronger and makes you more comfortable as well.

Remember, you’re the adult and you wear the pants in this relationship. Literally.

Whenever I make cakes, I leave ALL the leftovers with the hosts! 

3 – Don’t keep her weaknesses in the house. If you’re like me and can’t eat just one cookie or one piece of chocolate, then don’t keep it around. The longer you don’t have it around, the quieter “she” becomes and the stronger you become. You might be surprised that the next time you’re out and see your favorite trigger food, you barely pay it any attention!

4 – Keep track. Have you ever written in a journal? It can be beneficial in so many ways that is actually deserves it’s own post. But for today, it’s extremely useful to help with handling your Petunia.

Whenever you’re having one of those days when nothing seems to be going right, and the thought of a tub of ice cream sounds perfect, go to your journal. Write down your feelings and emotions. It doesn’t have to be perfect grammar, or even full sentences. Just get everything off your chest. It’s cathartic and when it’s over you may feel you don’t need that ice cream.

You may also notice that she comes out more often at certain times of the month. That gives you the upper hand at knowing how to control her!

5 – Don’t think you can control her once you’re eating. I’ve done this and you probably have as well. You see your trigger food and you say to yourself: “I can practice self control, I can have just one.” No, you probably can’t.

One turns into two, two into three and before you know it there are just crumbs left. The best way to practice self control is to have a controlled portion around. For me that means making small batches of cookies and sweat treats instead of big ones. That way I can eat what’s around without feeling like I ate and entire bakery.

6 – Don’t let one slip up break you down. Petunia is going to come out again. I’m human. But when she does I won’t beat myself up, or let her bring me down. Shit happens, bad nutritional choices happen, but don’t let one poor eating event lead to another and another and another.

Don’t let your eating choices affect your overall happiness or your drive to accomplish great goals.

Wipe your mouth, wash your hands, and move on.

What’s your guilty trigger food? 

If you could name your inner fat girl (if you have one) what would her name be?


  • Fantastic post. I, too, have an inner fat woman, and many people comment on that fact (jokingly, but it’s true)!
    I love your tips, as I can never stop at just one no matter how hard I try. I think I’ll come up with a good name for her, accept it,and then follow your tips.

    • Thanks! You’re not alone, there is no such thing as just one in my mind!

  • Wow, what would I name my inner fat girl. Good question. I was never fat but I definitely can relate to this post and I often picture myself at my highest weight and fear going back there and becoming that girl again. I have no idea what I’d name myself so I will have to think on it but I really love this post! As usual you rock.

    • Thanks! Give it some thought, I would love to know what you come up with! I’m the same… that fear helps me to keep her at bay sometimes.

  • This is a great post! I think I should name my inner fat girl Bertha! I feel like that appropriate because whenever I go crazy eating I feel like the Bertha game at most carnivals that wants you to just keep feeding her.

    • Haha, Bertha is a great name!

  • Interesting perspective but I can definitely see how that can help. I’ll try to look at it this way next time I’m craving food for no reason and I’ll try to shut my inner fat girl up! OR… me, now? What if I am currently at my highest weight (and don’t care that much) but it’d be nice to lose it and get back to my natural weight. Who do I call my inner fat girl then? Lol am I currently just that fat girl then?

  • I’d have to name my inner fat girl Bertha. And if I’m being completely honest, Bertha is being a total bitch lately! I’ve been trying to get into some sort of routine with the move, but living in a hotel and trying to be as cheap as possible (read: eating hotel breakfast everyday) might be starting to take a toll. It also doesn’t help that I’m running around so much looking for a place to live. My hectic, schedule-less life is very difficult as I’m a person who loves routine. I’m just hoping that when I do find a place to live, I can find that routine again.

    • Oh my, I bet you’re getting so frustrated! You’ll find a place soon and be able to get back on a schedule and habits. Good luck!

  • Anything sweet can be my trigger food! This past weekend I came home after being out with friends and devoured some leftover Halloween candy. Why? Because I was bored and my inner fat girl was talking to me. I usually would beat myself up over this, but I woke up the next day and said well you did that, because you didn’t eat enough, so move on, and nourish yourself today and the rest of the week.

    • I’ve done that plenty of times. You’re so right, you pick up the next morning and move forward!

  • i don’t think i have one. Instead i have a inner fear. It’s from being sick before. Yep, scary monster inside me saying that this food will make you sick. I have to shun the monster and be strong. So in a way, i can relate just with a different circumstance. either way, we need to ENJOY life and know that we control our happiness, food and all.

    • Yes, I would say that is comparable. No fun but you’re right life is meant to be enjoyed!

  • My food trigger = SALMON! However, I have wonderful willpower so after eating a pound of it, I would stop, LOL but every so often, I just… Cannot…. STOPPPP! ha ha! But there are worst thing to go nuts on, now aren’t there? 😉

    • There are definitely worst things to go crazy on! I love this! I could probably eat a pound of salmon too!

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