The most questions I get from my clients: “How do I know that I eat healthily?” “How can we know if what I’m ordering in a restaurant is healthy?” “Is this healthy, is that healthier?”
Can you answer? Can anyone answer?
For years, we were labeling items rich in saturated fat as “unhealthy”, and worshiping fat-free items as the savors of our health. As if fat were the demon and the reason for all diseases. While now most studies show that not all foods containing saturated fat are bad, and the fat-free items are not our savors anymore, because of all the additives they contain! So my people, healthy and unhealthy food dilemma will never get resolved!
Despite its benefits, as a study that was published in the “American Journal of Preventive medicine” found that labeling food in restaurants, supermarkets, and different food islets reduced consumer’s intake of calories by 6.6%, total fat by 10.6%, and unhealthy food options by 13%. Also, it increased the consumer’s vegetable consumption by 13.5%. However, it didn’t significantly impact consumer intakes of other targets such as total carbohydrates, total protein, saturated fat, fruits, whole grains or other healthy options.
What we conclude from the study is that choosing food labeled as “healthy” is good for our physical health, but what about our mental health??
Something very few in our dietetics field thinks of!
Intuitive eating_ an approach developed to help people heal from the side effects of chronic dieting_ however, has “Challenging the food police” as one of its famous 10 principles. You’re asking yourself, what is food police?
Intuitive eating describes it as “the unreasonable rules that dieting has created. It is housed deep in your psyche and it shouts negative barbs, hopeless phrases and guilt provoking indictments. Chasing the food police is a critical step in returning to intuitive eating. (p94)
So think about all the ads you see, all the rules you’ve learned from your previous dieting experience, and some posts on social media that tell you this food is “bad”, this food is “clean” that is “fattening”. You end up confused, so what can I eat? You start sorting and eliminating foods you enjoy eating, you deprive yourself of the natural food enjoyment.
Instead of seeing the picture as merely black or white, try living in the gray zone. Do not be so extreme and instead try to find accurate, non-exaggerated thoughts. More positive thinking also comes in the form of “the cup is half full” so finding your best-case scenario in a situation. The last way is having more of process thinking, like focusing on change and learning through the process rather than the end goal. Hopefully, all of these make sense, but it’s just so important to shift and renew your thoughts!
We’ve all born with an intuitive eating habit, but our diet world has wrecked it, let’s claim it back.
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