by Natasha N. Deonarain, MD, MBA
Here’s something funny I heard the other day from a new acquaintance. He was reflecting on our obsession with food and dieting. He’d lost a lot of weight over the last few years, through raw food and juice fasting. He told me how strange it was that humans were the only animals that didn’t know what to eat.
There’s such an incredible undercurrent of stuff
we’ve built up around food. We seem to want to punish ourselves at every turn when it comes to the most basic thing that fuels our bodies and keeps us alive, and the taste sensation that we should enjoy! Why have we somehow made food such an incredible guilt trip?
It reminds me of a few luncheons since I changed my habits. It’s amazing what affect these personal choices do to other people, even when you haven’t said a word!
“Well, I was going to choose the big, juicy hamburger, but since I’m with you, I think I’ll have a salad.”
People love to surround themselves with enablers. Even when they’re health conscious, they set themselves up to fail by saying the word, “I’ll try” or “I’m on a diet.” We all know that that’s just an excuse for not really giving yourself; your body and your life, a serious commitment.
But what’s even stranger is this: if you’re not enabling certain people to make poor choices so they feel less guilty about it, you might find yourself the one who’s not invited.
It’s very tough to be conscious in our modern society. We thrive on distraction, guilt, blame and fear.
Inside this mindset, there’s an obsession for us to all get healthy. But, we do it by punishing ourselves the whole way!
We cheat, we sneak around, we indulge and then we torture ourselves with guilt. The next day, we say we can’t help it and do it all over again. Sounds a lot like a sick romance to me!
Eating is so simple
it’s ridiculous. But it seems that if we don’t make things really, really complex and super expensive in America, or have a lot of data with fancy research studies behind it, the simple, natural and conscious choices we make ourselves aren’t to be trusted.
We’ve got ourselves believing that Dr. X, Y or Z from some famous University or Harvard Medical School has to tell
us what we should or shouldn’t be eating. And to be sure, those companies who supply us with supplements, products, cleanses and synthetic junk, have a strong financial motive to making sure we don’t trust our own decisions.
As a doctor who’s stepped away from the boxed-in mindset of modern healthcare, I completely disagree that we need to reach for the latest study to find out what we should or shouldn’t be eating. We all have the capability inside us. But, as long as we keep looking outside for answers and stop listening to our natural, innate instincts, we end up stuck inside our minds and on “spin-cycle,” forcing our poor bodies to go along with the ride.
The reality is, our bodies will tell us every single time what they need for nourishment. The problem is, we’re really good at not listening. And, our not listening skills are getting worse.
We love to keep ourselves distracted with any number of things to do in every moment. We love to stuff our minds with thoughts that don’t serve us well. We love to take someone else’s thoughts that tell us what we need to do and believe.
Once we clean all that thought crap out, it’s amazing what can happen with our health! Our bodies will innately lead us to total, integrated health naturally, simply and easily. We’ll be able to keep the weight off for life. We’ll never need to diet again. We’ll be able to enjoy a wide variety of foods available – yes, anything
we want. Just like the rest of the animals in the animal kingdom, our human bodies will tell us exactly what they need in every moment.
The trick is to learn how to listen and make your choices by every moment. Stop pulling out the day, week, month or year planner. It’s only going to make you feel guilty when you quit following your magnificent plan. And then, you’ll start the spin-cycle all over again. You’ll never get to where you want to go to look and feel great!
So how do we shut up our brains, stop our spinny thoughts and listen to what our bodies are saying?
There’s no right answer. But, I can share with you what’s worked well for me and a few other people I’ve talked to about getting more conscious when it comes to nourishment.
Turn off the television, radio, internet, smart phone and whatever other distraction modern society has for you. It’s amazing how listening to commercials about food makes you go the fridge. This is our subconscious minds working to make our decision for us. Why not take control, bring your decisions to clear consciousness and reduce the risk of falling into poor choices!
Never, ever, ever follow a diet. We are as humans, naturally born to eat. Why do we have to diet? All you have to do is write down what you are about to eat just before you eat it. Then, take a short moment to ask your body if this is a nourishing choice. Your body will answer, quietly at first. It’s a feeling. A fleeting thought that flashes on your mind. A twinge of guilt in your abdomen. Yes, that IS your answer. Learn how to listen to it, every time. This message will get louder and louder, and you’ll be able to recognize good nourishment from bad. And then, you’ll navigate by conscious choice in every moment, guaranteed to keep you healthy for life!
Get rid of your enablers. Choose different friends. Move on. You are who you hang out with. Does it really matter if that person is skipping the hamburger and eating a salad because you’re
there? What message is that anyway? That you’re
the cause of their obesity…just because you exist for them to blame? Choose your food friends wisely and be strong if you have to. You can still enjoy their company without buying into their conspiracy!
I’ve made dramatic changes in the way I think about food, my body and what’s good for my life. It comes down to being aware of my choices in every moment. And after that, the rest becomes history!
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