Your Body is Talking. Are You Listening?
Food is such a common thing in the world of well resourced people, that it is often overlooked. People may dismiss it as something that doesn't matter outside of managing cholesterol, Diabetes or weight gain/loss. It is such a repeated part of our days, we forget how important it is to our brains and bodies! Our food impacts our skin, mood and gut microbiome. Many of us look at food as something tasty to consume, but do not consider that it will impact every cell of our bodies. For those that consider the benefits or consequences of food;; it tends to be something you think of for your unrealized future self. “This cholesterol, saturated fat and trans fat filled tastiness won’t hurt now!” or perhaps “ I won’t need to worry about it until I’m 60 years old!” But, is that true? Let's take a closer look...
Did you know that gastric distress can be caused by food intolerance/allergy, autoimmune disorders and even infections?
Food doesn’t play a small role in our lives or our bodies. We are impacted right away and the cumulative effect is real. Some of us notice if our body doesn’t particularly like a food…we may get symptoms like gas, bloating, acid reflux that tell us…this ain’t sitting right...off to the toilet you go! However, many of us choose to ignore those issues and focus on taking pharmaceuticals or Over the Counter medications to manage the issues instead of addressing what is causing the problem and why our body isn’t quite enjoying the delectable goodies we choose to feed it.
Not sure what I mean? Hang with me for a bit longer…
Picture it, your beautiful body out for a hike on a 90 degree day after eating a double cheese burger, fries and a soda. It was delicious and slipped down an absolute treat. How would it feel to tackle this hike? Feeling comfy? Picture the same scenario, but on an empty stomach or a light meal. Heck, picture this scenario on food that your great-grandparents would have consumed. How do you believe your body would react? Sluggish…or thriving?
You won’t hear me telling you to not eat what you want. You are grown! And, unless you are related to me, you’ve likely gone the vast majority of your life without any knowledge of my existence. Make your own decisions. HOWEVER, I do encourage you to listen to your body. What does IT tell you? Believe me, your body is having a conversation even if you are currently ignoring its often-muddled voice. Listen to your body before you listen to anyone else regarding food. If you feel physically bad after eating something…why do it? If you are incredibly tired after a meal (it’s a sign of a few things, possibly including insulin resistance) why keep doing the same thing?
Im not talking about adjusting your Turkey/Tofurkey day meal or your Chrismahaunkwankah Solstuvus meal. Nope. I am talking about your nightly dinner. Breakfast. Or, even brunch. Don’t forget the brunches!
Storytime! I had a friend years ago that was determined to eat food she enjoyed from her youth. However, that food that may have been acceptable 20 years ago became HIGHLY problematic. I won’t go into any real detail, but she needed to make very frequent yet notably uncomfortable trips to the smallest room in the house. One day, I finally asked a simple question…is it worth all of this?
Some may not have a clue to what is causing distress…she did. And, despite having the knowledge and resources to be able to substitute, reduce or just simply change…she chose to continue.
Okay, back to our double cheese burger…
Now, you and I both know that one burger isn’t going to do much (except on that hike!), but what does one burger every day look like over a few years? Well, on the positive side, you may have strong hair and nails. You may have a decent iron numbers for your lab work from all that heme iron.
On the downside you may have increased inflammation.
Did you know that some schools of thought consider inflammation and Depression intricately linked? The more inflamed your body, the higher the risk for Depression. And, this is a bi-directional Phenomenon The more depressed you become…it is possible that you become more inflamed. What would you think of feeling depressed and realizing that while the burger did NOT cause your depression…but contributed to you feeling worse?
How often would you eat it? How often would you eat things similar? Would you shift…or press on?
Now, I used an example of a cheese burger, but it could literally be any food. You cannot expect everyone to follow a specific diet because not everyone is suited for every diet. There are those among us who NATURALLY desire a vegetarian or vegan diet. Then, there are those whose ancestors thrived on meat and…well…genetics do not change that quickly.
So, listen! What is your body telling you? In a short while, I will be fully offering Mental Health Nutrition as education. I specialize in Depression and Anxiety, but reach out over other topics. If you are interested and would like to learn more, I welcome you to schedule an initial consultation and we can decide if we are a good fit for each other.
Be well, be bold, be inspired!
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