Another year creates another chance to develop as individuals from experiences and past mistakes. In theory, as we age, we grow wiser which moves us closer to understanding our intimate selves but unfortunately, this is not necessarily the case in the health and nutrition space. So, what gives when we’re still making egregious mistakes in the efforts of adopting a healthier way of living?
Why do we keep repeating the same acts with an expectation of a different result and what are the big takeouts from the past decade that we can use to move away from failed diet trends and fads?
4 Healthy Ideals That We Need to Carry Into The Next Decade
1. Understanding that no one diet approach works for everyone
Perhaps your co-worker boasts a weight loss from a particular diet that seemed like a breeze yet you’re not seeing the same results?
Research is finding that we all respond differently to food, so to find out what works best for your body, it’s important to look at an individual level also.
Gut microbiome, sleep patterns, stress management, environmental conditions – even beliefs and attitudes play roles alongside how we respond to what we eat. Stop beating yourself up over past failures and begin tuning into your body and eating what honestly makes you feel good. Diet personalisation is the way of the future and a key to long term weight loss success.
2. Quit Subtracting
When we think weight loss, we conjure thoughts of food restriction, limiting calories and growling hunger pains! So last decade (or two…)
Consider instead what you could add to your existing diet. What could you include that is going to crowd out unhealthy options that are perhaps a by-product of habit formation and mindless decision making?
Source new recipes, in-season fruit and vegetables you don’t usually choose and swap out refined sugars and processed food with whole foods, that are nutrient-dense (rather than energy-dense).
Being in a space of food restriction can only offer short term results. Act bravely and be willing to make mistakes. The process of connecting to what works for your body sets us up for a state of growth and nurturing.
3. Stop giving the scales power
Too often I hear stories of how a number on a scale has the flow-on effect to an individual’s state of happiness.
Feeling compelled to regularly ‘weigh-in’ is effectively a vicious cycle of negative re-enforcement and can act as a trigger for self-sabotage behaviours. The number that is reflected doesn’t always show for our efforts, especially if you’ve been recently adding in strength workouts (muscle adds definition but also higher digits).
Instead, pay attention to how you feel, your energy levels and how your clothes fit. If you’re choosing the higher road and living a healthier lifestyle, ditch the scales and empower yourself through positive reinforcement and self-talk. The scale is not an indicator of your worth.
4. Move, in ways that make you feel good
Quit the ‘have to’ mindset and focus on moving in ways that leave you feeling good and likely to want to continue and improve on. If lifting weights in the gym or running marathons doesn’t rock your boat – don’t do it. Of course, there is an element of having a certain amount of self- discipline when it comes to incorporating fitness into our day but finding something you enjoy doing is going to create one less hurdle when it comes it getting out of bed in the morning.
Tell a surfer they are building core stabilisation, muscle strength and endurance and working their cardiovascular system and they will laugh and instead tell you how much fun they have. Also, take a leaf out of our kid’s books and watch how they move and have fun doing it. We should never lose the ability to play and have fun –in the quest of staying youthful yet also wise ?