I saw a post in my Instagram feed the other day talking about “diet culture”. Now, I’d never heard this term before but I totally get it. Check out the picture and tell me what it says to you:
To me, it’s referring to the overcomplication, confusion creating, and marketing from companies and people claiming to be able to make you healthier by selling you their latest product.
First thing, no new product is going to be healthier for you than what nature has been working on producing since the universe began. If you want to look and feel your best – you just need to eat real food. From the earth. Plants or animals, whatever you choose (but do aim to have more plants than animals in your overall diet). Those things that our bodies have been adapting to digest more and more effectively over millions of years of evolution.
Not a shake. Not a powder. Not a ready meal or cake that’s got a Weight Watchers or Slimming World certified sticker on it.
CAKE IS NOT GOOD FOR YOU.
Keep It Simple, Stupid
Ah, the old and reliable KISS principle. Referring back to the banana, let me know if you’ve ever heard anyone say:
“If I hadn’t had so many bananas I’d be at my weight target right now.”
What’s that, none? I should think so.
Now replace the word “bananas” with “takeaways”. Or “packets of crisps”. Or “drinks on the weekend”. Or “Mars bars”. Or “drinks through the week”.
Those sound more likely, don’t they?
And that’s because it really is simple.
Eat food that’s good for you, and don’t eat processed crap. Now I know even that can still be a bit vague. So to clear that up, how about saying:
“Eat more nutritious food, eat less empty food.”
“Nutritious” meaning that food is full of vitamins and minerals and things that make you look and feel good. “Empty” meaning that food isn’t full of vitamins and minerals and contributes to you looking and feeling like shit.
Plus, thinking of food in this way means you can stop thinking of things as “good” or “bad”. You shouldn’t have to feel like a naughty child for eating a slice of cake. You should be able to be aware that it’s not going to help you in working towards your goals, but it’s fine every once in a while. And be okay with that. That’s having a sense of balance. Rather than feeling like you’ve ruined everything if you ever stray from the “perfect path” of whatever diet you’ve been following and proceeding to throw all your toys out of the pram. And your results along with them.
Finding A Positive Balance
Thinking of foods and nutritious helps with building this sense of balance. If you’re eating more nutritious foods then empty foods, you’re in a positive balance – and moving forwards. If you’re eating more empty foods than nutritious foods, you’re in a negative balance – and moving backwards.
Which way of thinking of foods sounds more productive to you?
If this all makes sense to you, and you want to learn more about thinking of food in this way – check out my new book: Finding Your Balance. It teaches you what’s nutritious, what’s not, and how to apply this way of thinking to your life with a simple (and more importantly – sustainable) system. It’s currently available for just £1.99 on Amazon Kindle, or £11.99 in paperback. Click here to get your copy.