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Archive for: April, 2012
Apr
30

The Ole “Drink More Water” Trick

You need to drink more water...???!!!

You need to drink more water…???!!!

When I worked for Nutrisystem, they told me to tell people to drink more water if they weren’t losing weight.

It was an easy thing to say, wasn’t “dangerous” and gave people something tangible to do to try to speed up weight loss.

The problem was that it was a bunch of “you-know-what.”  I am so sorry I went along with that.

Dehydration is definitely not good for you, but pushing water when your body isn’t thirsty is not necessary or beneficial to weight loss.  There is plenty of science on that.  Just google it.

Bottom line- drink when you are thirsty, eat when hungry.  Mother Nature did figure things out nicely for us!!

And the diet industry is simply preying on our desire to find a quick fix or one-liner that will speed our weight loss.  And they charge us for it!! Geez!

Apr
18

Nutrition Is Important, But…

I recently posted on FB that fast food gets over-demonized.

My point was that some people hyper-concern themselves with nutrition, and miss that being disconnected with hunger and satiety are way more detrimental to health than eating some fast food.

Have you heard of orthorexia?

Orthorexia is a disorder where you becomes obsessed with the “perfect diet” and the cleanliness of food, and eating a highly regulated regime.  I call these people “righteous eaters.”

Caring about nutrition is fine, but when it turns into an obsession and a hunt for perfection, you can do permanent damage to your body and to your mental health, on several levels.

Here are some of the foods orthorexics tend to restrict, or completely remove from their diets:

Dairy, meats, and eggs: Cutting out these foods could mean you’re not getting B12, needed for proper brain function and red blood cell production.

Gluten and grains: Grains contain minerals that we need (like magnesium, which is needed for healthy bones and nerves; and manganese, which is needed for healthy heart function).

Fat: Good quality fats, found in foods like olive oil, avocado, nuts and seeds, grass-fed beef, grass-fed dairy and pasture-raised eggs are a must for the body. They keep skin healthy, cushion and protect vital organs, insulate the body against heat loss, protect nerve tissue, and help regulate women’s menstrual cycles.

Placing yourself under regular mental stress regarding making “perfect” food choices can trigger stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline. Normally, these hormones are meant to fire when you’re in a threatening situation to boost energy supply for immediately action.  But when your mind believes there is a constant threat, even low levels of these hormones, like cortisol for example, can suppress the digestive system, the reproductive system, and growth processes.

So, instead of demonizing, or sainting certain foods, focus on responding to your body.  Take the heat off of your eating decisions and relax a bit.  An Egg Mcmuffin when you crave one isn’t going to hurt you, as long as you wait for hunger.

Eat what you crave, listen to your body.  Refuse to eat without hunger.

Results of this?

Less stress on your mind, and therefore your body.

Happier relationship with food and eating

Stable lean weight

Quite a nice payoff for understanding the downside of “over worrying” about nutrition and “under worrying” about being connected to true hunger.

Apr
9

Recognizing True Hunger

Yes, there is an adjustment period as you learn to leave your diet mentality behind.  You aren’t used to listening for hunger.

In this preliminary stage, stay calm, slow down a bit and actively listen.  If you decide to eat for reasons other than hunger, at least own that.  Then, see if eating that actually made anything better.  And then, next time, try delaying for 10 minutes.  See how you feel. Delay for 20 minutes.  See how you feel.

And what you will realize is that if you can just delay long enough, you will have the far more rewarding experience of actually eating when you are hungry.  There is no better or more enjoyable time to eat.

Remember, you will be hungry several times every day.  That means that another eating experience is right around the corner.   This isn’t denial.  This is delaying until your hunger and your eating match up, as Mother Nature intended.

Dieting has made you think eating with a regimented plan is the way to be good.  NO, that is the way to ignore your own body’s voice.  If you don’t listen to it, who will?  You are it!

Dieting  taught you to eat when you weren’t hungry and to eat foods you don’t love.  And it taught you to not eat when you ARE hungry.  No wonder you don’t know when or how much or what to eat!

Don’t feel guilty about that.  You were trying to do the right thing.  Just take it easy, and start the enjoyable journey back to how you were born.  Eating when you were hungry, spitting it out at your parents when you weren’t, and crying if no one fed you.  Simple. Smart. Harmonious. Responsive.