It’s been over 4 years now.
Over 4 years since the consequences caught up to me, forcing me to reevaluate my life.
Over 4 years since realizing I needed to break free of the accompanying mentality.
I was unhealthy physically and mentally.
It was a pretty miserable existence and I felt trapped. (My story as featured in Gena Hamshaw’s Green Recovery series.)
Fortunately, in the midst of it all, I stumbled upon a blog written by a registered dietitian. Her message?
Diets do not work. Ever.
And she explained just exactly why diets didn’t work…scientifically. It made complete sense. From that point on, I was driven to learn all I could about health and nutrition.
Turns out the experts agreed. In fact, diets don’t work. Not long term, anyway.
Today, I am at peace with how and what I eat.
Now, granted, there are a lot of things I gave up.
Recording calories. Measuring food. Steering clear of fats. Avoiding carbs. Eating at prescribed times of the day. Fasting. Following prescribed ratios of carbs to fats to protein. Buying low calorie/low fat processed foods. Jumping on diet bandwagons. Starving myself. Exercising excessively.
My days are no longer categorized as ‘good’ or ‘bad’ depending on what or if I ate.
I don’t feel guilt for any of my food choices.
And my “diet” is really quite simple. I eat a diet rich in vegetables, fruits, grains, legumes, nuts and seeds. I rarely eat processed foods. I eat when I am hungry. And I eat what I’m hungry for.
And this works for me.
This is what a diet should be. A way of life. And 4 years in, there is no doubt in my mind that I can maintain this for a lifetime.
I am not at all deprived. (Not by a long shot.)
And my favorite…desserts:
I’ve discovered a lot of “new” foods:
And while my diet has not restored my eyesight to 20/20, increased my IQ, or erased my wrinkles, it has positively impacted my health:
- My weight and BMI are stable and in a healthy range.
- My vital signs are normal.
- My cholesterol and cholesterol ratio are impressive (that was the word used by my doctor).
- I am rarely ill (Also impressive, as I am a teacher.)
- My complexion is clear.
- Severe bouts of constipation are gone.
- I sleep well.
- I am medication free.
I feel a lot smarter than I did 4 years ago; I’ve learned a lot.
Yet in spite of what I do know, I feel there is something I don’t know. Like perhaps something is missing. And for that reason (and to avoid some serious FOMO), I have decided to take part in a small group book study through my church called The Daniel Plan. (“Decided” may not be the most accurate word. More like compelled.)
Over the next 6 weeks, I hope to figure what I’m missing.
When I find it, I’ll let you know.
In the meantime, I hope to share my experience with you.