Each of us would like the food we eat to bring in as many nutrients as possible and make us healthy. That is why most of the recommendations revolve around food – what to eat, which foods contain minerals and vitamins, what is the ratio of proteins, fats and carbohydrates. It’s like it all ends with us smearing our portion.
It is not that simple, because whatever we eat, only what our body has adopted counts. Maybe you once discovered a great flower diet, made a solution and tried to water it. However, for some reason, the earth did not want to absorb that nutritious water, so for the most part it spilled over the pot. Basically, you did give his food to the flowers, but that food did not end up in the root system of the plant, in order to provide it with lush growth. Too simplistic, but somehow.
There are several main stumbling blocks that in the whole process of adopting a healthy diet make us not get the desired result and although it is difficult to list them all, the most important ones follow.
In order for some food to be found in your digestive system, you need to choose it, buy it, store it, have someone else prepare it for you, eat it in a restaurant, at home, at work, everyone already has their own way. So, in order to find something on your plate, you need to decide what it will be. It is crucial how you make that decision because everything that comes later depends on it. Is it really a conscious decision, or is it a routine or the fastest solution at a given moment? Is a healthy diet a priority for you, or do you not think about it at all.
But let’s say you care about eating as healthy as possible. You got a great diet plan and started with strong motivation. However, after a while, it becomes a burden for you and you fail to stick to the plan, as much as you want. You know what to eat, but you are sabotaging yourself. Willpower doesn’t help. You give up. And this is not the first time this has happened.
What to do:
You need to dive into the reasons WHY you are not behaving the way you want. If you have been eating in one way for years and intend to change it, then it will take time to adopt different choices and habits. Sudden and big changes that change the routine from the root will not last long, because you also need to live your life, in addition to eating. The environment in which you find yourself can also be crucial. You are constantly surrounded by food that does not fit into the desired plan, so at some point, you give up.
To successfully dive into your WHY awareness is necessary. It is the ability to spot triggers that motivate you to certain behaviors, to come up with programs and beliefs about food and nutrition that may once have served you well, but now only block you. You are usually not aware of them. For example: let’s say that as a child you were always suggested to eat everything from the plate so that nothing was left. A program has been created in your child’s mind: if I eat everything, then I am good. You are now an adult and you have continued to be that good child, without even noticing why you always clean everything off the plate even when there is obviously more food on it than you need.
2. TOO MUCH FOOD
Imagine you bought a juicer. The characteristics are known: for home use, it should not work for more than half an hour continuously, you should not add wheatgrass, and apples should be avoided. As long as you follow the instructions, you get fine juice on one side, well-squeezed, dry pulp on the other. Your juicer works great. However, somehow, over time, you start to insert everything and anything into it, without waiting for one round to drain, you insert the next. Little by little, you notice that your juicer throws out increasingly cloudy juice, and the pulp remains moist and heavy. In the end, what you get looks more like thick than squeezed juice, and the appliance itself starts to break down more and more often.
Something similar is happening in our digestive system. When you enter food, the process that takes place has its course and includes digestion, assimilation and elimination of what is unnecessary. When you add new food without the previous one being cooked, the process is disrupted. The food you eat is not well broken down, nor are the nutrients utilized to the end. Our organism is able to cope with periods without food because that trait was necessary for survival. However, it is difficult to cope with excess food, and today we mostly eat more than we need.
What to do:
The first step is to get rid of unnecessary snacking between meals. The second is at least three hours without food before bed, which allows the body to digest the remaining food and not spend energy on digestion at night when it is much needed for the processes of renewal and “repair” that take place during sleep. And the third is the conscious reduction of portions, especially dinner. Little by little and gradually.
And don’t forget: there is still a lot of the healthiest food – a lot of food.
3. PERSONAL PHYSIOLOGY
Although we have a common characteristic of having fingers on our hands, each of us has a different fingerprint. Each of us is a human being but at the same time a completely original individual with its own specifics. This also applies to food, what suits us or does not suit us, what is good and what is bad for us. And while some specifics are easier to detect, such as lactose intolerance, some are not easy to come by. There are many reasons why some foods will not suit you, even if they are at the very top of the healthiest foods. On the way from the bite you just swallowed to the breakdown into basic units, adoption and its endpoint, there are many interdependent processes that are mutually conditioned. How they will flow depends on your personal physiology. Do you have enough lactase, an enzyme that breaks down milk sugar lactose? How do you deal with gluten? Are FODMAP foods problematic for you? Do you have enough receptors for LDL cholesterol in your cells, or will it stay elevated in your blood? Maybe you don’t have enough magnesium, which is necessary for about 300 processes in the body? How rich are the community of microorganisms in the intestines and which of them dominate? Many such questions can be asked, and the answer is different for everyone.
The fate of the bite you just swallowed will be determined by your personal physiology. This bite can be perfect in its nutritional composition, but what will happen to it in your body does not have to be perfect.
What to do:
Nutrigenetic tests can help you map the points that are problematic, which significantly helps in deciding what to avoid in your diet. However, they are quite expensive, at least for now. It remains to pay attention to the food that does not suit you, which is not always easy. The challenge with intolerance is that symptoms can occur a day or two after eating. Therefore, call for help again. Pay attention to whether you often have difficulty with digestion, bloating, abdominal pain. Sometimes we get so caught up in these symptoms that they start to go away. If they are common, start noting what you eat and monitor your symptoms. The problems you have today may be due to what you ate yesterday or the day before yesterday. This kind of record can help you spot the pattern and identify the food that bothers you. Keep in mind that it can happen that some food only bothers you in a larger amount, while you tolerate a little of the same food quite well. Also, at some point, certain foods may bother you, at other times they may not. And here is the awareness of invaluable help.
It often happens that you know exactly what bothers you, but you can hardly resist, and you continue to eat food that causes you problems. In that case, return to point 1 of this text.
Even the healthiest food you eat before stress will lose the battle and will not bring you the expected body nutrition.
What to do:
Whenever possible, relax during meals. That means a meal without a phone, television, computer. Be aware that you are eating and feel the taste, smell, aroma and texture of the food.
And as someone who has enough years of life, and life experience, I warmly recommend you: throw away the news. Don’t listen to them. Notice the difference between the important and the unimportant in life and remove as much of that unimportant as possible. Bring a lot of beauty into your life. Do what you love, find time for it. Hang out with people you like. Take time for those little things that you really enjoy, and that you usually forget about because you are carried away by obligations. Discover what it is that puts a smile on your face. And laugh.