This month I’d like to discuss supporting self love through nutrition.
It is so easy to forget to treat ourselves with love when we’re busy spouses, parents, pet-parents, professionals, students, or any other position where we spend much of our time caring for, servicing or trying to please others.
And, unless you live under a rock without access to television or social media, you’ve likely been the victim of a marketing ploy advertising foods or ‘food products’ that undermine and sabotage your health.
However, you are not weak, nor do you lack will power if you have responded to such advertisements by eating ice cream or fast foods. These foods are designed to set off an array of pleasure sensors that make us crave them and over-consume them, and our bodies are genetically designed to respond to such a stimulus.
Unfortunately, in our fast-paced modern world, in part due to the pressures of marketing and advertising, food is in turn so often used as a means to treat and/or punish ourselves and is then seen as the enemy.
So how do we fix this?
First of all, we need to focus on real, whole, unprocessed foods as much as possible. These foods are indeed healthier, but they are also much more satisfying, so we do not have the urge to over-consume them.
I encourage you to use the month of February as a time to focus on reshaping your relationship with food.
One simple action you can do before every meal is a recommendation that I’ve borrowed from Dallas and Melissa Hartwig of whole30.com/
Before every meal or snack, simply ask yourself “Is this making me healthier, or less healthy?”
Answer this question, accept it and then move on. This should help you to build awareness around what you eat and make more thoughtful, cultivated decisions. In turn, when you do choose a food that is not making you healthier, you can do so with a wholesome reason (i.e. celebrating a milestone).
So instead of using food to punish and reward yourself, use food to show yourself and your body love!