Lately I’ve been seeing this topic popping up more and more around healthy living blogs. Heather and Meg have especially given an emphasis on the topic and inspired me to write about how it has affected my life and why I think it is truly the best way to live.
Personally? I love it.
I am so sick of hearing the word diet. To be healthy and happy you do not have to diet. You do not have to listen to somebody else tell you what you should be eating. You should not be eating x and y because Jane Doe is eating it and its clearly working for her. You are not Jane Doe. You are you. Only you know what works for you.
Maybe I should have named this blog post “you” since I’m clearly overusing the darn word. What I’m trying to get at here is that “you” is not synonymous with “them” or even “me”. Your body is a beautiful thing and if you give it the chance, it will take care of itself. Eat healthy food, that is, eat real food. Food that comes from the earth, in its pure, natural form.
Wheat is not the devil and neither are carbs. Just because gluten-free is the latest craze doesn’t mean you need to adopt it if you have a healthy digestive tract. And for the people still living under a rock, fat is not going to make you fat. And eating meat does not mean you are a murderer.
What is true is that everybody is different and there is no “one size fits all” diet dogma. Hey, maybe the blood-type guy was onto something after all. Yet again according to that my dad should be a vegan; of course in reality he needs to be begged, bribed, or otherwise threatened to eat anything green.
I’m not bashing diets here, after all, some diets can be really effective in healing digestive disorders and identifying food sensitivities and underlying medical conditions. But that doesn’t mean you should be on them forever. Until recently I thought paleo was the lifestyle I’d always been destined to live. And if that works for you, well then all the more power to you. But here I am telling you that I’m going kaleo, aka diet free, aka doing what works for me, aka honoring my cravings and listening to my body and eating that crunchy peanut butter on sprouted toast when I damn want it.
In the last couple of days I’ve added back soaked lentils and brown rice into my daily meals. Today I had peanut butter on Ezekiel bread as an afternoon snack. These small changes have put an end to my constant snacking, constant hunger, constant craving for something that was never satisfied no matter what or how much I ate.
I can’t stand sappiness and as cheesy as it sounds, you really do need to eat and live intuitively. Stop living to eat; obsessing about food, micronutrients, quantities, and other diet-related preoccupations and start eating to live.
You may not be Christian but this is one of my favorite verses from the bible:
“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” Matthew :25–34
I’m telling you all this because food has been my preoccupation for many, many years and little by little I am letting go of these unhealthy obsessions.
Stressing over food is not good for anybody. It doesn’t matter what you eat or what you do, if you stress about it, its not working for you. Don’t fight me on this one. Try it for a week. I’m not saying go open your chocolate stash every time you feel your sweet tooth kick; I’m saying stop denying your body what it wants, stop following stupid diet restrictions if its not going to kill you to eat that restricted food (hello, allergies and sensitivities).
Like Elizabeth says, all you need to do to be healthy is to figure out what is healthy for you. Eat real food, be happy, don’t stress.