Today I was grocery shopping and couldn’t help but notice so many confused faces.
When did eating become so complicated!?
This is something that I’ve run into time and time again in my practice, but to see it out in the wild, really brought this idea back to light.
So here’s the thing, we’ve been steered in so many different directions by the ‘USDA’ and diet books - that as a whole, as humans, we no longer trust our instincts on what to eat.
Remember those ‘GOT MILK’ ads!?
For me those came out during elementary/middle school. Back then we would put in our milk order at the beginning of the day so that it would be ready for snack time. Today - it almost feels socially unacceptable to have milk in your fridge. But to the same end - I’m pretty sure most consumers don’t know how horrible Oat Milk is for your health as well.
So what does a human do?
I remember back when I used to coach the New Faces at LA Models, one of the most revolutionary pieces of information that I would share (across the board), was to look to non-packaged foods over something in a package. It blows my mind (did back then and still does today) that this was REVOLUTIONARY information for those girls.
But now that we’ve created a ‘healthier’ version of every food we grew up eating (on the Standard American Diet), it’s become honestly confusing for most humans to decide what to eat! Just because it has a Cauliflower crust - does that make the pizza ‘healthy!?’
So when clients come to me with this dilemma, we sit down and really think about ‘how does this make me feel.’ This might SOUND like an oversimplified approach, but I can almost guarantee you eat foods time and time again that leave you bloated or not feeling your best. WHY IS THAT!?
It’s because most people have a LONG way to go when it comes to really getting in touch with themselves. The MIND-BLOWING piece of this whole dilemma is that our physical bodies innately know what to eat. Our food is our fuel (albeit it can also be our pleasure), but from a basic human function perspective, I promise you that your body knows what it needs to be fueled properly.
So the next time you’re sitting there thinking - WHAT SHOULD I EAT? Or, after eating something you’re left feeling like you SHOULDN’T have consumed that, take a step back and sit with YOU. If you’re hungry and don’t know what to eat, allow your instincts to kick in. Our attention is often SO over occupied by work, family, school, social media, television, etc…it doesn’t leave much time for your own intuition to speak to you (unless you make time that is).
So sit. And if you get a ping for pineapple, don’t ignore. It’s possible your body is looking for some extra digestive enzymes. Or perhaps it’s a big juicy steak. It’s possible you are low in iron or really need a protein boost. Although it might not feel super convenient to take it meal by meal, but bare with me for a week. A week of having ‘healthy’ staples on hand, but also sitting and breathing for a few moments before mealtime to check in with your body to find out what it truly wants and needs. This is one of the first steps I always take with my health coaching clients because it’s an incredible first step back to trusting your gut and leaning into who YOU really are.
Sometimes I truly think that our issues with eating really just stem from us, as a collective whole, getting too far away from connecting with ourselves and understanding who we really are. Our fuel is just one little piece of that puzzle.