Extremes can be so tempting for some of us. Extreme ways of living can make us feel secure with their rules and restrictions. And while I do believe rules and restrictions are healthy for us (my personality type is a rule-follower, type A, safe with routine type of person) I also think that living in the middle of extremes can actually be the healthiest thing for us.
Being a dietitian that has worked with many clients, and has been on her own personal journey with food, I have found the most success with my health and my client’s health when we actually get a little LESS strict with our food rules. So instead of focusing on a 100% clean diet, which ultimately can lead to the binge-restrict extremes, living in that 80% zone helps us stay balanced in the long term.
For example, let’s say you eat perfect meals for 3 weeks straight. You portion everything out, use your calorie counting app, and feel totally in control. You lose 10 lbs and you feel amazing, but you are missing some of your favorite foods, going out with friends, and the freedom to eat what you crave. You then decide to “give in a little” to a craving, go nuts, and binge for 5 days straight. You gain back 12 lbs, feel fluffy and bloated, and basically feel like a failure. This cycle continues, and you go up and down 10-12 lbs every couple months.
For me, this cycle had me going up and down 20-25 lbs every couple months! I had two sets of clothes depending on what weight I was at, and I was so TIRED of living such an inconsistent, extreme life between binging and restricting.
Isn’t it better to live a little less perfectly for the long term, versus living in extremes that leave our body feeling tired, going up and down in weight, and feeling like a failure time and time again?
I finally decided that I’d rather live as a healthy and balanced X lbs instead of living at either X +/- 20 lbs, forcing my body through the never ending and incredible unhealthy rollercoaster.
Let’s let go of these extreme lifestyles and focus on healthy habits that we can implement into our everyday life. For example, some healthy habits I encourage my clients to live by are working out daily, having a vegetable with each meal, and having a salad with dinner every night. These are habits we can ADD to our day, and they will not only nourish us more, but will help us establish a healthier foundation for the long term.
Extremes can be tempting because they promise results and success, but I’d personally rather live a lifestyle of health that includes salads AND pizza, kale AND cookies, and a little bit of middle ground when it comes to our food choices. I believe in living a nourishing LIFE so that you can have the freedom of sweets and treats, while trusting your body to take care of the rest BECAUSE of that heathy foundation you have set.
This is what I teach my clients with my Nourished & Free Method. If you want to live a life of nourishment while living in food freedom, click here to learn more about how we can start working together to make this happen.
You CAN build an incredible foundation of health that will allow you more freedom than you know!