If you’ve ever found yourself looking for resources on how to lose weight or how to eat healthy, you might realize how hard it is to find a valuable source. There are so many fad diets that contradict each other that it can be hard to keep track of what’s healthy and what’s not. Don’t fall into the spiral of relying diet myths for your source of healthy foods.
Carbs aren’t the Enemy
Most low carb diets will argue this until the world stops spinning, but trust us carbs are not the enemy! Carbohydrates are the first source of energy and are extremely important for many functions in our body. With that being said, maybe avoid using pure sugar as your only source of carbohydrates. The goal is to find nutrient dense foods as your main source of carbohydrates. Totally restricting carbs from your diet will result in quick weight loss, but that’s because a major food source was removed. Instead of removing them, replace breads and pastas with fruits, vegetables, and whole grains like rice and quinoa. If you’re really craving something, you always have a cheat meal to allow yourself the “less desirable” carbs!
Fats are not Bad
For years we’ve been told that low-fat equals healthy. While getting certain foods, such as salad dressing in a low-fat version are a wiser choice, it’s not because fats are bad. Fats, like carbohydrates get a bad rep, but also like carbs, they are one of the three macronutrients needed for many daily function in the body. In fact, a diet full of a variety of fats, like omega 3 fatty acids, in adequate amounts can actually help lower risk of heart disease. Foods like fatty fish, nuts and seeds, and eggs are all rich sources of fats that are good for the body! We’re not saying eat only fat – like all food groups, everything in moderation.
You don’t Need to Starve Yourself
Diets that promote extreme low calories or even fasting as a way of losing weight just don’t make sense. Starving yourself for weight loss isn’t worth the stress, as it isn’t actually improving your quality of life. It’s normal to want your body to look a certain way, but restricting your calories in an extreme way is just depriving yourself of what you eventually will need. Extreme low calorie diets ultimately have to end, and even if it’s at a goal weight, there’s then the question, “well, what do I eat now?” This design of diet is temporary, and is not a fix to a problem. Turn your attention to a lifestyle change, rather than a quick fix diet. And yes, that might mean it takes longer, but your body will appreciate it more!
No Need to Detox Either
Detox diets, similar to low-calorie ones, set an idea where it’s necessary to restrict or follow an extreme mindset to get to a goal weight. Detox diets often express a need to reset before you start a diet. Some fads include skinny teas, juicing, water cleanses, and so on. The common theme: not looking at food to solve a weight problem. Many of these fads promote reduction in bloating, healthy skin, higher energy levels, but you know what else does that? Eating a well balanced diet! Detoxing before you decide to make healthy lifestyle changes is only procrastinating to make the changes. Again, these are all fads that try to promote quick fixes to problems that take time. Take the time to invest in a healthy lifestyle change, rather than relying on a cheap, temporary solution.
What Should you be Doing?
Find a system that works for you. For some, it’s tracking their meals. For others, it’s meal prepping. Whatever you find, it should be something that feels like it integrates smoothly into your life, not something you have to force. There’s always a bit of resistance when starting any new habits, but nothing should continuously feel foreign.
Consume real foods. Don’t fall for advertising that focuses on extreme promises. Instead, focus on how the food might benefit your health. Fruits, vegetables, grains, and lean proteins are all great ways to consume nutritious foods that will give you all the things you want without paying the price for a label. Well-balanced diets are more realistic to follow over a long period of time, and offer the right amount of variety so you don’t feel like you’re missing out on anything.
Redevelop your relationship with food! Find a sustainable way to incorporate healthy habits into your life, without feeling like you’re giving up the world. Not sure where to start? Take the metabolic quiz to find a meal plan that helps integrate wholesome foods that your body needs into your daily routine!