Did you notice that I didn’t call this post ‘how to eat healthy’? There’s a reason for that.
No, I don’t have anything against the word healthy, but when it comes to food, I think “eating healthy” can be a surprisingly loaded term.
What does it mean? Plant-based? Vegan? Clean? No carbs? All the carbs….? What one person considers ‘healthy’, another might consider lunacy.
I propose instead that when it comes to diet, we aim for a healthy mindset. A healthy attitude.
And that we look to eat… well.
Most of the time.
How to eat well
To me, eating well means eating what your body needs. It means eating a diet that is balanced and rich in the vitamins and minerals that make your body happy.
This will of course differ from person to person, someone with coeliac disease will have to cut out gluten, while someone who works out a lot will probably need more protein. So how do we know if we are eating well?
Well, to start with – how do you feel? Are you full of energy with clear skin and sparkly eyes? What is your lifestyle like? Are you eating enough nutritious food to keep you going or do you reach for quick sugar fixes?
Sometimes making small tweaks makes a huge difference. Here are a few tips that help me eat well:
- Have a fully-stocked snack drawer at work. My top drawer is full of Graze boxes and Nakd bars. This helps avoid the ever alluring biscuit tin.
- Drink more water. I don’t really like tap water, so I used to live on squash. Then I got a Brita filtered water bottle and my life changed, no more squash for me. If water bores you, try adding some fruit to liven it up a bit.
- Start as you mean to go on. If you start the day with a nutritious breakfast you’ll be more likely to keep it up. I have a mix of oats, granola, banana and blueberries first thing followed by a green tea when I get to work.
(most of the time)
OK so on to the ‘most of the time’ bit. I want you to let go of any expectations that you’ll eat well all the time. If you have this in your head, you’ll feel disappointed and guilty when you stray from nutritious ‘healthy’ foods – and, well…. ain’t nobody got time for that shit.
You’re going to eat chocolate sometimes. You’re going to meet your friends for brunch and get pancakes ‘for the table’. You’re going to conveniently forget to buy dinner for you and your boyfriend, forcing you to order Dominos (and brownies).
That’s life. And also, that’s awesome! Food is there to be enjoyed and as soon as you start depriving yourself, you will feel just that – deprived.
Life is too damn short. Aim for ‘well’, ‘healthy’, whatever the fuck you want to call it, but do not feel bad for enjoying the odd less healthy treat. It’s all about balance and feeling good in both body and soul.
Sorry, I got a little swear-y there. I guess it’s just something I feel passionately about. I’m all for eating a nutritious and ‘healthy’ diet, but I think it should come down to how you feel.
If the way you eat makes you feel happy inside and out, keep doing you.