Today’s topic is something that I’ve been really keen to talk about and I think is something that has now become a big part of our lifestyles. There are now so many different diets and ways of eating out there, it can be easy to feel slightly lost and unsure of what is the right approach to suit you. Now, when I use the term ‘diet’ I’m not just referring to weight loss programs or crash diets, I’m talking about a general lifestyle and way of eating. The health industry is constantly growing and healthy eating is probably more popular at this current moment in time than it has ever been! But with so many different methods and approaches out there, it can be hard to determine which one is right for you.
Here’s the thing, there is no one sized approached fits all in this case.. every single person is different, with a different body and therefore different needs. There are many different diets claiming to be the healthiest options and best way to achieve amazing results, however what might work for one person, might have a completely different effect on another. It’s important to do a bit of research and experiment with different things to find what works best for you and makes you feel good.
With that being said, you really don’t have to conform to one particular way of eating and fit into a certain category either. For example, If you follow a paleo diet but really fancy having some grains with a meal, then that’s completely fine and you should feel that you should be able to do so. In order to achieve a healthy lifestyle that is both enjoyable and maintainable, I feel that you should be able to be flexible and tailor it to suit your specific needs and desires. Crash diets may achieve results in short periods of time, but if these eating habits are not something that you feel like you can keep up with for a long period of time, then this is not likely to become part of your lifestyle in the long term. In my experience, it is far more effective to make slightly slower progress, but through methods that can be adapted to fit in with my lifestyle and become a part of my everyday routine. Being healthy does not require you to stick to a certain diet or rules, it includes a whole range of different elements and is a complete lifestyle and way of living. There is a lot more to focus on that purely food, so choosing a particular diet and following that precisely may not be the answer to being and feeling the healthiest version of yourself.
There is an awful lot of pressure to live up to certain health stereotypes and this can sometimes lead us to feeling negatively about ourselves if we don’t stick within the guidelines of that diet. Food is something that we need to fuel and nourish our bodies, but should also be something that is enjoyable. It shouldn’t be something that causes you great amounts of stress and leaves you feeling restricted and under pressure. If you spend a lot of your time stressing about your eating habits and planning out your next meal, then that is probably not the most healthy approach for you and whilst you may be eating a nutrient dense diet, your mindset and mental well being could suffer.
If you’re keen to make changes to your diet or just generally want to make some more healthier choices, I would definitely recommend doing a bit of research or seeking a professional opinion from a nutritional therapist if you’re feeling a little bit lost. It’s important to remember that you don’t need to fit into any labels or categories here; the most important thing is finding out what makes you feel good and works best for your body. A lot of this is often found through trial and error, but it can be really helpful to seek professional opinion and get some guidance to insure that you’re taking a safe approach with your eating habits and develop a bit more of an understanding about what the foods can do for your body. There’s now a lot of resources for these kinds of topics online and in magazines, so it’s important to make sure that you’re sourcing your information from credible resources for example: things that have been written by people with recognised qualifications/ evidence based information.
To sum things up a little; don’t worry if you’re feeling confused and are unsure about which diet to follow and what would work best for you. You don’t need to stick to any rules or label yourself in anyway. You’re diet is a part of your lifestyle and will be a very personal and individual thing for your body. I would recommend booking in a consultation with a nutritional therapist to get started and review your current eating habits and perhaps how these could be adjusted to help you achieve any goals that you might have for the future. Finally, for me I find it so important to listen to my body and eat foods that I know will nourish it and most importantly, make me feel energised. I now have a pretty good idea of what agrees with my body and what it needs to function at it’s best and these things will be completely different from what will work for another person; but that’s fine, because this is about you and not your label or fitting a certain diet.