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?


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