Food is good! I really enjoy eating, matter fact one of my goals in life is to travel to different continents and explore various types of vegetarian dishes! I am definitely one of those people who takes pictures of my food and I will confess, it isn't for anyone else's enjoyment but my own. I want to savor the presentation of the food, I want to close my eyes and inhale deeply the delicious aromas, I want to fill my mouth with indulgence and attempt to distinguish each and every season and herb used. Yes I REALLY enjoy eating!
And if you've spent any time on my social media you may think I'm full of it. Someone who waxes poetic about their love of food usually isn't thin. Most cooking shows, reality TV, and movies would have us believe that an individual who highly enjoys food is overweight and maybe unhealthy. Up until 2020 I was overweight and unhealthy LOL but that was due to so much more than food!
Everyone, and I mean everyone, who learns I have lost 70lbs immediately asks me how I did it and then stares at me in disbelief as I explain "eh, I only ate in an 8hr window, went for walks, and did some home workouts." I am pretty sure they are cussing me out behind that blank look on their face and I giggle because, while this is the truth, it isn't the full truth it's just the easy answer to repeat frequently.
The truth is that for up to 5 years prior to my weight lost I had been slowly implementing changes in my diet [side note: diet means the kinds of food that a person, animal, or community habitually eats.] to align more with what my body told me it wanted and needed. My body spoke to me in illness, when I consumed food, drinks, and stress that wasn't in line with what I needed, my body would manifest physical illness in the form of acid reflux, gas, indigestion, insomnia, and ultimately anxiety and gastritis.
By becoming more mindful with my body I was able eliminate all of those symptoms. It took time and diligence; I didn't always know what to do and occasionally ended up taking 2-3 days away from my regimen in order to recover from my body protesting what I was putting it through. Acknowledging the aches and pains, listening to injury, experiencing purges, these were all ques I needed to understand my body's language
Below is a guide that is similar to the steps I implemented in my own life to get the results I wanted. Keep in mind that every body is different, be gentle with yourself as you move through these steps and learn to what each really means to you. Read through the following list and then ask yourself: Do I feel triggered when reading this suggestion? Why am I triggered? Why am I not triggered? Is this something I walk out in my own life?
Interested in how to make these changes in your life? Lets talk! Walking in alignment with your true pleasure and purpose in life really can lead to improved physical health and it can all begin with a conversation.
1. Reject the idea of diets
Recognize that diets may lead some to healthier weight but ultimately diets and diet culture have created a more toxic environment than that of thriving and healthy lifestyle. Discard any idea that a quick and easy weight loss solution can be found with a social media guru or magical slim quick products. Previous diet hacks may have worked temporarily but that feeling of failure when weight returns isn't properly placed, be angry instead at a system that makes you feel such a way.
2. Honor your hunger cues
Our body requires energy to complete functions that allow us to live and it will signal us when a need to reenergize occurs. Instead of suppressing that urge until a more convenient time, make a conscious effort to consistently eat an array of protein as well as carbohydrates. Once you reach the level of uncurbed hunger all intentions of moderation are short lived. Learning to honor your hunger cues the first time sets the stage to rebuild trust in yourself and in food.
3. Make peace with food
There is no such thing as ”good” or “bad” food, all food is vital in supporting life. Give yourself unconditional permission to eat and enjoy! Refrain from telling yourself that you can’t or shouldn’t have a certain food, it can lead to intense feelings of distress that can trigger overeating and feelings of resentment.
4. Evict the Food Police
Just as there is no "good" or "bad" food, YOU are not a criminal for eating certain foods. Don't allow an imaginary voice to live rent free in a tiny police station of your brain! Tell the Food Police you are no longer interested in their services and send them on their way
5. Discover the Satisfaction Factor
It's easy to get swept up in diet culture and overlook the simple pleasure of the eating experience. When we eat what we really want, in a pleasant environment, we are more likely to use all of our senses to indulge in the taste, smell, and feel of the food. Taking the time to fully enjoy this experience allows us to know when the experience is over, instead of over indulging.
Interested in how to make these changes in your life? Lets talk! Walking in alignment with your true pleasure and purpose in life really can lead to improved physical health and it can all begin with a conversation. I look forward to talking to you!