Low carb diet, vegan diet, Paleo diet, IIFYM – you name a diet, I’ve tried it. From the time I started being interested in health and fitness, I had an passion for finding the perfect way of eating: the diet that would make me look good and feel good. So I weaved in and out of different regimens for 2 years, never quite feeling my best.
Whatever the latest trend was, I was on it, flying to the grocery store to pick up the latest “in” foods. It didn’t matter that I hated green salads (and yes – I still don’t really like them) but the low carb-high protein meal would supposedly help my body burn more fat. Or stocking up on pop tarts and candy bars because if I can make them fit my macros I HAVE to eat them, right? Scrolling through Instagram, I was hooked on everyone’s diets and how I could make them my own.
After suffering from digestion issues my whole life, the constant changing of my diet started to take its toll. I never felt happy about what I was eating and the way it affected me. I realized I was eating to other people’s standards, to what I thought was the best based on everyone else, and not to what actually made me feel good.
Turning to vegetarianism healed my relationship with food. After giving up meat, I naturally began to eat more plant foods and less animal products. Immediately I felt lighter, happier, and content with what I was eating. I was achieving true balance for the first time – eating foods that I wanted to, not that I felt like I had to. For me, adopting a mostly plant based diet healed my body and mind.
The truth is that everyone’s body is different. For me, eating more plants was what worked best for me, but for others, IIFYM, Paleo, vegan, or low carb might be what frees them from the chains of dieting. Don’t force yourself to like something that you don’t, or to eat foods that make you unhappy. Although it can be easy to let social media influence your eating habits, at the end of the day, your body will thank you for staying true to your needs.
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