This Nutritional Toxin Will Surprise You – with Marc David

It’s hard to avoid the seemingly endless amount of toxins that we’re exposed to via the air, water, our food, cosmetics, in the workplace, household items, and so much more. For sure, it’s a great strategy to try to clean up the toxins in your world as best you can. What many people tend to miss when it comes to detoxification are the toxins we self generate – meaning emotional toxins that can pollute our mind and ultimately drain the body. In this video from #IPEtv, Marc David, founder of the Institute for the Psychology of Eating, reveals a potent mental/emotional toxin that’s well worth letting go of. Learn how to empower yourself and your metabolism with some clear advice when it comes to food, body and life.

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Here is a transcript of this week’s video:

Hi, I’m Marc David, Founder of the Institute for the Psychology of Eating.

Today’s topic: This Nutritional Toxin Will Surprise You

One of the great nutritional challenges these days is learning to manage all the information we hear about various toxic foods, toxins in those foods, toxins in the air, the water, and in the vast majority of our household and beauty care products. It seems like there’s a lot to worry about, doesn’t it?

So I’m certainly aware of this as I’m bringing to the forefront yet another nutritional toxin that might surprise you.

This toxin can impact us in some very powerful ways. It actually interferes with higher critical thinking. It stops creativity. It limits our intellectual bandwidth and understanding. And it has a strong influence on our eating behaviors, and can even impact our behavior towards others.

The nutritional toxin I’m talking about is this: Judgment.

Specifically, I’m referring to how many of us intensely judge the nutritional beliefs and dietary practices of others – be they friends, family, strangers, or nutrition experts and thought leaders.

Because I am in and around the nutrition universe in so many different ways for so many years, I have a wonderful opportunity to see nutritional judgment in action every day.

Essentially, nutritional judgment looks and sounds like this:

  • I’m not going to listen to a single thing that expert says. She eats meat.
  • I’m not going to listen to a single thing that expert says. He’s a vegan.
  • That person doesn’t have an M.D. or Ph.D., so how can they know anything about nutrition or health?
  • He’s eating sugar. I thought he was into good nutrition. I can never trust anything he ever says again about food or health.
  • Look at her – she could definitely stand to lose some weight. How dare she talk about nutrition and health?
  • Look at her. She’s old. How could she say anything nutritionally useful to a younger person?
  • Oh my God. He’s sick. He has cancer. Or he has an autoimmune condition. How could he possibly know anything about health and healing? I will no longer listen to him.
  • That person advocates eating more fat. How can anyone say that? He knows nothing.
  • He advocates eating less fat. How can anyone say that? He knows nothing.
  • That person’s into Paleo. Clearly, paleo is just a fad. I’m not going to listen to anything that community has to say.
  • She’s eating cooked food. 100% raw is the way to go. Obviously she’s inferior and cannot take the higher nutritional road.
  • That expert said one thing that I don’t like. Therefore, nothing they say has value.

I think you get the message, my friends.

The list goes on and on.

In nutrition as in life, when we use our judgments to stop all conversation, then we have dramatically limited our possibilities to learn, grow, evolve, and be exposed to information that might actually be important for us.

When we’re in judgment, it’s easy to feel right, righteous, and we truly believe that we have the moral and intellectual high ground. But can you recall any time in life where you held some very strong and powerful and immutable beliefs about the way things were – and then eventually those unchangeable beliefs indeed changed – and for the better?

That’s what life does.

Humans are fast losing the fine art and science of listening with an open heart and an open mind. I think we become too quick to write other people off for all different kinds of reasons. We could write someone off because they’re homeless, poor, black, white, Asian, old, young, fat, skinny, beautiful, rich, smart, opinionated, diseased, because there are male, female, or how they do sexuality or religion – and the list is endless.

If your approach to nutrition doesn’t have consciousness in it, then consider it deficient.

Consider it imbalanced and inadequate. Consider it a little too toxic.
Judgment serves no one, especially the one doing the judging.

It stops exploration. It stops discovery. It stops possibility. It stops the questioning process. Someone can tell you 100 stupid and insane things, and then say one thing that changes your life. I know, I’ve had this happen.

So here’s my suggestion to overcome this nutritional toxin:

Notice where you’re closed-minded when it comes to health and nutrition.
Notice where you’re quick to judge others.
Notice where you write people off quickly, without truly first seeing the gift that they have to offer.
Notice where you judge people about what they eat.
Notice where you judge people about what they believe about eating or teach about eating.
For extra credit, notice where you judge your own self around on this.

And then, do your best to remove this nutritional toxin from your life.

This doesn’t mean you don’t have a strong position about what you believe in.
It doesn’t mean that you can’t get angry or passionate about foods and substances in our food chain that are clearly harming people.

It simply means that we open our mind more in some of the places where it’s artificially closed. The result will be a smarter brain, a greater sense of community, more discovery, and an open heart.

All of which make us a heck of a lot healthier and way more interesting as human beings.

I hope this was helpful, my friends.

Marc David

To learn more about the breakthrough body of work we teach here at the Institute for the Psychology of Eating, please sign up for our free video training series at You’ll learn about the cutting-edge principles of Dynamic Eating Psychology and Mind Body Nutrition that have helped millions forever transform their relationship with food, body, and health. Lastly, we want to make sure you’re aware of our two premier offerings. Our Eating Psychology Coach Certification Training is an 8 month distance learning program that you can take from anywhere in the world to launch a new career or to augment an already existing health practice. And Transform Your Relationship with Food is our 8 week online program for anyone looking to take a big leap forward with food and body.


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  • Lynne Gray

    Someone once said that if you are going to eat something and you think it is bad for you, it is. Our minds are so powerful that our thoughts can keep us from eating the healthiest foods that nourish our bodies–healthy fats are one example. If one thinks that butter is bad, it will be bad for that person. If another person thinks butter is a healthy fat and will nourish their body, it will.

    • Marc David

      You nailed it. Our minds are so very powerful.
      Thanks so much for joining in.


  • Very interesting…and powerful…I have been catching myself always judging everything and everyone I see…good to be aware and stop is a freeing experience that makes me feel happier and lighter. thanks so much.

    • Marc David

      Hi Lois,

      I’m so glad to have your input here. I think many of us will recognize, as you have done, that we spend so much energy on judging others that we forgo that lighter, happier feeling we get when we are not so attached to the impressions we create about the lives of others.
      Thanks for joining in here.


  • Lu

    Once you get rid of that judgment, it’s liberating, at least it is for me anyway. I now pause and check into my own insights about myself. I find turning judgement in to compassion and goodwill towards others makes it easier to let go and move forward with things that really matter.

  • Libster

    This is SO relevant to many things I have been reading lately – and not just about food or nutrition, but also about politics, spirituality, etc. Clearly, if we don’t start LISTENING to each other, we’re goin’ down!

  • Beautifully put, Lu! Thank you so much for sharing about your experiences with letting go of judgment!

    Marc David

  • So true, Libster! Conscious and compassionate listening can change our lives! Warmly, Marc

  • Debby

    Thank you for sharing. Judgement is a great topic and certainly relevant to the nutrition community. My husband once wrote a poem” I’m veggier than thou” which addressed this topic in a funny kind of way. Accepting and allowing others to evolve in their own way is not always easy, but certainly a healthy way to live.

About The Author
Marc David

Marc David is the Founder of the Institute for the Psychology of Eating, a leading visionary, teacher and consultant in Nutritional Psychology, and the author of the classic and best-selling works Nourishing Wisdom and The Slow Down Diet. His work has been featured on CNN, NBC and numerous media outlets. His books have been translated into over 10 languages, and his approach appeals to a wide audience of eaters who are looking for fresh, inspiring and innovative messages about food, body and soul. He lectures internationally, and has held senior consulting positions at Canyon Ranch Resorts, the Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health, the Johnson & Johnson Corporation, and the Disney Company. Marc is also the co-founder of the Institute for Conscious Sexuality and Relationship.