I have felt that way in the past; I think it does come from comments, or expectations of comments, etc. I was a picky eater as a child and people would remark about some of the ways I ordered food/ate food, etc. Then during periods of dieting, people would comment about me not eating enough; even when they didn't, I would feel like they were thinking it. I was very, very self-conscious about eating in front of others, to the extent I would avoid it as much as I could among non-family members. For some reason I don't feel that way now. I think maybe it has to do with my emotional relationship with food and maybe being in a better place, or knowing that I'm doing what's right for my body.
However, I admit that I do tend to be a food voyeur. I look at what people eat (I don't think I watch them eat, but I look at what's on the plate), what's in the shopping cart, etc. I like to talk about food, cook food, try new recipes, and so on. I can't say I have the thought of "look at what that fat chick is eating;" when I see a plate piled high with fried frying oil fried with fried sugar, I usually think about the diet of Americans in general, about food scientists and manufacturers and restaurants that all buy into the culture to promote people to be "addicted" to unhealthy food, about how it is about stripping down nutrients and making it cheaper but less healthy, and about the things I used to eat all the time that were equally unhealthy. I guess what I do is focus on the food more than the person. I am fascinated with the psychology of eating and I've read a number of books on it, so I think that's the direction my mind takes. Sometimes I find myself thinking how easy it is to slip back into that, sort of a "there but for the grace of God go I" kind of thought.
This reminds me of a question that came up a while back about what people do when they see a very overweight person exercising. Do you think, "Wow, look at that fat person trying to jog?" I think the general consensus was (IIRC and I'm basing on my own experience here too) is that you think, "More power to ya, dude."
Edit: I had one more thought in response to Rubystars' last post. It comes down to the basic fact that we cannot control what other people say, do, and think, or how they look at you (much the same as we can't control the fact that delicious tempting foods are out there, that people will bring goodies to work, or that society glamorizes thinness over health). You can only control what you do, how you feel about things, and what response you choose to have. In many cases, the person may not even be thinking about you at all; they might be thinking, oh, that fudgsicle looks good; I wonder what kind it is? If someone gives you a dirty look, you can give them one right back, choose to let it go, choose to walk away, or choose to think that they're a person with a miserable attitude. At that point, it's their problem, for being an ugly person. When you let it dictate what you do or feel, it becomes your problem, and who needs more problems?
And now that you don't have to be perfect, you can be good.
Last edited by cjohnson728; 01-08-2012 at 08:12 PM.