This post was inspired by two of my wonderful Complex team members after a lunchtime conversation about how to eat for your own body (and mind). What foods will give you energy, and how you can only really listen to yourself to discover what nourishes you best. Here are some of my guidelines to live by when learning to eat wiser.
This is key. Your food should always give you energy. However as we’ve evolved, so has our palates. We now eat for enjoyment, social experiences, exploration, adventure, habit, emotional detachment, tradition, etc. Make note of what foods truly energize your body. You’ve got alot of life to live, stop slowing yourself down!
When you’re starting on a mindful eating path, keeping a food journal is a great way to look back over your week of eating and consciously recognize what fueled you physically and mentally, and what you enjoyed but made you need a nap. It’s basic but effective!
Whatever you’ve heard before, ignore it. There’s so much chatter in this world, constant noise trying to put everything into ideal little boxes. Eat a solid breakfast, don’t eat dairy, avoid meat, try keto, eat 5 meals a day, eat 3 meals a day, incorporate intermittent fasting, celery juice will burn all your calories, adkins anyone? The list goes on and on. But guess what? You know you better than anyone. You know that you are not your super skinny friend who can eat cake and wine for dinner, nor are you the friend that is strictly vegan. You are what nourishes your unique dna. Make your own rules!
Be mindful of eating 80/20. 80% of the time you eat exactly what will give your body proper nutrition. 20% is the occasional chocolate chip cookie, birthday cake, cheeseburger, or glass of wine. For those that don’t like math, that’s 5 whole days of eating SMART, with the two days offering opportunities to have that cookie or celebratory glass of wine with friends. These aren’t go insane cheat days (aka yo yo dieting), but instead true flexibility for the slight indulgence of our lifestyles.
This affects all aspects of our being. When we’re tired, we do everything we can not to be: drink coffee, eat sugar, devour chocolates, drink more coffee, etc. Exhaustion throws everything out of balance. And if you’ve been out of balance for years, it might take a stronger focus to get yourself aligned again. But don’t get discouraged, you can do it! Minute by minute, day by day. Recruit a friend to do it with you, or email me. I’m here for you!
I’m not a certified nutritionist exactly, but I have studied health and nutrition extensively for my own use and understanding. Literally over a decade now of digesting information. Not sure why I didn’t go to school for this, but alas we take the paths we do for the reasons that make sense at the time. Anyhow, if these ideas help you at all then I’m thrilled!
And finally, I wanted to mention…if you’re still unsure of where to start, I found Ayurveda incredibly useful when examining my own nutrition needs. For years I had been eating cold salads thinking it was the healthy choice but discovered, by way of an Ayurvedic Training, that warm foods were more conducive to my internal digestive fire. One little change made a HUGE difference. No more bloating, constipation, lethargy, or excess lbs. My hope is that it supports your healthy moves also. Here’s to your own healthy eating, and living!