We are always on a personal journey to learn more about ourselves, the way food affects our bodies, and the way our thoughts about food impacts us and the beautiful women we work with. We’ve doing a lot of thinking as we prepare to launch our 12-week online course this May and we want to share with you a really juicy topic that we will be diving deep into during our course.
Today, we want to share with you some of the impact that food and our eating habits have on our emotions and mental state. As you are all quite aware, our minds are powerful. So powerful that they have the ability to make us feel overwhelmed with joy or completely miserable - especially when it comes to food!
Let’s think about it, we are bombarded by food messages all day long; it’s all over Facebook, Instagram, TV, the internet, our friends, and grocery stores. We couldn’t go a day unless we cut off from all social media without experiencing some sort of messaging about food. Most of which is suggesting what we should or shouldn’t eat, what is healthy or unhealthy, what’s going to make us feel good or not. Soon enough, without even knowing it, we stop using our natural body cues or intuition about food and it becomes all about what’s “healthy”. We end up forbidding certain foods or worse - we end up uncontrollably eating “foods we shouldn’t eat”. This is all because of this “diet” or “healthy” mentality. Assigning values to foods rather than how we experience them is what has food make us miserable.
Here are 5 habits that might be making you miserable.:
1. Counting Calories
How it makes us miserable: Counting calories is stressful! Constantly denying yourself what you’re craving because it has too many calories is like torturing yourself, although we never think of it that way. You’re restricting yourself from every internal body cue you have: hunger, fullness, and satisfaction. Forget eating out at a restaurant, it’s sure to bring guilt and food envy. While you might be able to hold back for a week or even months, eventually you’ll binge. One day you’ll have no choice but to eat more than your allotted calories and then the “what the hell” phenomenon sets in and you end up eating uncontrollably. The body wants what it hasn’t had and what it can’t have. The delicious girl scout cookie box in your fridge you’ve been holding back from for months is now empty.
2. Eating only “healthy” or “safe” foods
How it makes us miserable: This one we call being on a “secret diet”. You don’t even think you’re dieting, but the reality is you’re totally restricting yourself from foods you might want or need. For example, cutting carbs, or quitting sugar. While it’s good to eat high quality foods and foods that make us feel good. Having the mentality of restricting has us want those things even more. . . which lead us to binge eat the “forbidden foods” or worse - we don’t even realize we’re not feeling our best because it’s so normal. For example, have you ever experienced feeling cranky, tired, anxious when you’re cutting carbs or you’re on a cleanse? Yes, that means you’re not giving your body what it wants or needs!
3. Only eating at certain times of day
How it makes us miserable: Here’s another diet technique that we think is doing us good, but actually isn’t. When you refuse to eat late at night or you decide to skip breakfast. This totally impacts your energy levels! And who isn’t cranky when you’re tired?! This technique also slows down your metabolism. If you’re afraid to have indigestion by eating too late, try something light.
4. Only eating “acceptable” food in public.
How it makes us miserable: For example, ordering the salad, something small or a no carb meal when you’re in front of other people because you don’t want people to judge what you’re eating. Here’s the problem. You end up feeling totally and completely restricted, maybe envious, and you don’t feed your craving. . . this leads to binge eating, late night fast food runs, and eating way more of the “forbidden” food when you’re not in public. Instead of having a scoop of ice cream, you end up eating a carton by yourself. Then the guilt sets in and you might even eat so much you feel physically ill.
5. Judging how much or what to eat by what you “deserve.”
How it makes us miserable: This is another common “secret” diet mentality. This is when we decide to eat something or not to eat something, because we “deserve it” - or in other words we feel like we’ve eaten really healthy lately, we’ve exercised enough or we’ve had a really stressful week. The reality is that you deserve to have any food whenever you want it. Here’s the problem: we end up restricting ourselves again from the foods our bodies are craving or we eat less than our bodies need. This has us overeat at our next meal or eat our forbidden foods - leaving us feeling guilty, and tired with a slower metabolism!
You might relate to all of these or maybe just one! The majority of women are unable to enjoy their food or their life, because they are overly concerned or obsessed with food. The moment you let go of needing to be on a diet, or what is in your food, or how many calories it has, is the same moment you can begin to really enjoy the experience of food - including the place, the people, and the taste. Instead of focusing on eating to be healthy, focus on eating to feel good. Experiment with foods and see what makes you feel best! We know you have enough to worry about, don’t make food be on that list!
We’ll be talking about quitting your diet and how it will transform your life forever on an upcoming webinar and in our online course. We know so many women struggle with these same experiences and that’s why we’ve created these opportunities.
We’d love to hear what you think of this article, about dieting, and how your relationship with food is impacting your life! Please comment below or send us a personal message. We are here to support you, beautiful, and we hope to hear from you soon!
xo, Marisa and Hannah