Throughout my fitness and wellness journey, I am often asked about my opinion towards various “diets”. I often laugh at this question internally because if you know me than you know, I don’t believe in diets! My results have been gained through consistent healthy eating and working out. One of the very first things I ask my wellness client’s and those who have consulted with me is their attitude and perceptions of diets. Like I tell them, if you truly want long lasting permanent results than you truly have to change your mindset, lifestyle, and perception of the word itself,-“diet”! I know what you’re thinking, “ugh, change my lifestyle” what the hell does that even mean??! Well, let me break it down: your lifestyle is literally the style in which you live your life. Do you work out regularly? Do you eat healthy regularly? What do you do in your everyday life? Lifestyle changes work diet’s don’t. You literally have to embrace a lifestyle of healthy eating and knowing exactly what you put into your body as well as embrace an active lifestyle to see permanent results. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying you wouldn’t see results from regular temporary dieting, however, commercialized mainstream media has conditioned our minds to believe that “diets” work towards permanent results without even shedding light to the true meaning of the word itself.
The word diet itself has lost its true meaning over time. Let’s dissect the word. With just one basic Google search, if you look up the definition of the word “Diet” here is what comes up:
The 2nd noun definition “a special course of food to which one restricts oneself, either to lose weight or for medical reasons” and the 1st verb definition, “restrict oneself to small amounts or special kinds of food in order to lose weight” in my opinion, have negative connotations to it. These definitions promote “weight loss” only and poor eating habits by restricting oneself of necessary nourishment which can spiral into disordered eating or orthorexia. When striving for a healthier lifestyle, weight loss should not be the only or ultimate goal. There are so many other factors to take into such as body mass index, body fat percentage, and inches to name a few. The number on the scale is not the only number to take into account when it comes to healthy living, even if you are just trying to lose a few pounds for a certain event, competition, or for preventative measures such as a medical condition.
Have you ever seen those people who say they were on the “such and such diet” and you actually saw their progress? Then as soon as they “got off” or stopped the “such and such diet” they go right back to their old ways? You just watched all that progress and then you watched them regress. That’s because “dieting” promotes a temporary solution which warrants temporary results to a permanent problem. When I use the word diet I literally think of your everyday food intake, not something one “goes on” temporarily. I believe that everyone should change the way they think of the word diet by realizing its actual definition which is described perfectly via the first definition shown above, “The kinds of food that a person, animal, or community habitually eats”. A diet is something you “habitually” do- which means it is a habit- permanent. Once you begin to acknowledge this, your daily intake and eating habits should become easier! Think permanent results. Think long term. Think LIFESTYLE. Sure you can try various “diets” such as the Paleo Diet for a few weeks as a challenge to your already established food intake habits but it should be something you learn from and something that influences your normal diet-not something restrictive to warrant temporary results. So when people ask me about my “dieting”, I simply say, I don’t diet! Eat healthy regularly, work out regularly, and meditate regularly and you are well on your way to a healthy lifestyle: what I like to call; the No Diet, Diet!
Here’s my challenge to you:
Think about your diet- as in your normal daily intake; is there something you consume regularly that you KNOW you shouldn’t? Try eliminating that from you diet (daily intake) little by little. Wean yourself off of it until you find yourself no longer in-taking it! Turn your temporary actions to permanent results. Remember change begins in your mind!
Be mindful and stay well,
ILM, MSW-Wellness Coach
Email me today for a free wellness consultation!
“Change begins in your mind.”
“Where there’s a will, there’s a way.”
Please consult with a medical physician and/or mental health provider before beginning any fitness, nutrition, or mindfulness regimen or program.