Our thoughts. They can be deeply reflective. As we end the year, they tend to be more so. And that’s just the opportunity I need to invade your thoughts and plant a deep seed there.
Disclaimer: This article is meant to be intentionally persuasive. Only those who want to be compulsively healthy, want to make it their business to stay joyful, want to change their mindsets towards what makes for happy nutrition must read on. Others stay clear.
Weight Loss is only a part of the whole. In fact, a consequence of a lifestyle that has been nurtured with love and much effort. But the very fact that weight loss has an unequivocal bond with aesthetics has somehow brought it’s importance to the forefront. Somehow it has become a goal in itself. Somehow the importance of the journey towards this goal stands nullified.
And that’s what must change in 2020. Obesity is a beast. And must be fought, valiantly, 75% of the the potential risk to disease can be reduced if the excess fat can be fought and mastered over. But there are chapters to resolving this issue. Because multiple factors have fostered it’s growth.
Nutrition and well being must be seen holistically. Keeping healthy is a skill, it requires practice. Of several kinds. Think back to what your parents wanted from you and you probably either in mind or in words or in action have rebelled against at some point in your teenage life.
Watch….less of the bluescreen
All of this matters. To create a lifestyle that kindles that halo you want for yourself. So what is it that we need to really stay healthy and happy for always?
PATIENCE: Anything that comes all too easy will be lost all too easy. Simple rule. Just remember this whenever anyone offers you the “quick candy” solution.
It may have taken you years to gain weight, months to feel the shift from feeling energetic to feeling fatigued, ½ a decade from taking for granted a great gut to realizing that it’s messed up without you even knowing how.
It will take time to reverse these changes. And patience has to be your driver. Quick solutions only mess up your body, teach you nothing and make you feel cheated when the results boomerang! Worse still, these instant solutions build resistances against long lasting changes.
The sooner you realize this ultimate truth, the faster you can get onto a real solution, and here there are no shortcuts.
LIFESTYLE: You live once, live life king size. Can be interpreted in 2 ways. Let me just enjoy, eat, drink and have fun, the rest is destiny. OR I have only this life to do all I want and health is my only partner to keep the engine strong and running long!
Lifestyle issues aren’t complicated. Easy to correct. Difficult to get yourself to make up your mind to do it.
Sleep, rather the lack of it – considered a metabolic disease world over because adults are just not willing to sleep on time, enough and restfully. It is the easiest solution to combat inflammation. Inflammation, the biggest and unarguably the most widespread cause of the rampant rise in the incidences of cancer. Take an oath – to sleep on time, to sleep for a minimum of 7 hours. DO what it takes to make this happen, the rest will fall in place.
Stress, ambition is great as long as it doesn’t kill you. A reasonable amount of stress is great, because it can drive your potential and that’s what stress hormones are meant to do. But today, most of us are bearing the torch down on our adrenal glands forcing it to produce copious amounts of stress hormones causing our internal system to crash too soon. Depression, anxiety and a poorly behaving gut is what we are left with compounded with fatigue, tiredness and a serious lack of joy.
Visit a counsellor even when you feel like you just need to speak to someone who is unbiased and who will hear you out without feeling the need to provide solutions. I urge you, you need a counsellor even before you feel the need to have one. When your body is not well, there is no shame in visiting a doctor, similarly when your mind doesn’t feel right there cannot be any shame in needing a counsellor.
Food choices: begin with the very act of repairing your back end. Your kitchen. Let it accommodate only unprocessed, deeply nourishing fresh foods. Foods that will bring the family together to eat at a table that will resonate with laughter and conversation while the food is being devoured.
Packaged foods, unprocessed instant foods will ignite inflammation, will sap your energy and compromise your gut. You know this, now also know that the very reason you move to convenience foods is to save your time. Sadly this convenience will cost you time because it will slow you down on energy and on efficiency.
Heal your gut: Your gut decides your metabolism, decides whether it must keep or throw away the toxins. A poor gut can be the hearth to many inflammatory body conditions. And a poor gut happily thrives on poor food practices, poor sleep and stress.
The longest nerve in the body connects the brain and gut – the vagus nerve. So needless to say, a chronic poor gut can affect your state on mind and happiness. There’s only one solution here and the answers are the same. Just ride your eyes above.
INTERNALIZATION: Once you are on the path to good health, internalization is tool to cement these behaviours. Talk about good lifestyle practices, not just what you did to lose weight. Talk about how exercise has raised your cardio capacity and ability to think clearly rather than how quick a solution the keto diet is to weight loss. When you internalize, when you spread the good word, when your learning lights the spark in another’s life, you reiterate your practices to forget them not!
Let the New Year trend towards a different mindset, towards resurrecting our thoughts on health. Decide to want health and then want health as bad as you want weight loss. Be prepared to take the journey and do not allow your weight loss results to derail you. That journey has to be one of learning and patience to practice lifestyle skills until you imbibe them once again. Until it becomes a practice you can’t do without. And that’s huge. Fat loss will come, as an outcome of your effort.
Just don’t be unreasonable on the demand you place on your body. The perfect figure is as perfect as your mind sees it. You come first, everything else later.
Anupama Menon is a nutritionist and food coach based in Mumbai and Bangalore offering sustainable nutritional plans with 3 cheats per week. To book an appointment call 9902060225 or follow her on Instagram @iamanupamamenon