Is your weight an ongoing issue? Do you struggle to take it off no matter what diet you try? If staying at a healthy weight seems to be an ongoing challenge for you with no permanent solution, take heart, you're not alone.
Although there are many causes that lead someone to becoming overweight, regardless of the initial or on-going reason, the solution to combat this condition always begins with the nourishment of the body, its cells and tissues, so metabolic healing can occur.
The reality is that as many as two thirds of people in the developed world are not only overweight but also undernourished in key nutrients like calcium, fiber, Vitamin E, magnesium and potassium.
It seems we've gotten heavy on calorie consumption while leaving our bodies to suffer from a lack of nutrient-rich foods – the very things we need to achieve better health and maintain a healthy weight.
Focusing on foods you should not be eating is not the solution. It only energises the situation with your attention causing an internal battle! If cutting calories out, without balancing your diet with nutrient-dense eating is your thing, you are on a direct path to damaging your health. Is losing weight this way worth risking long-term health issues down the road?
Rather than placing your focus and energy on foods that need eliminating from your diet, switch your focus, your attention, your energy to the foods that SHOULD be included in your diet. You need to energise your thoughts with the foods that nourish your body and get it back into a fat-burning efficient state.
This means all nutrients and minerals in your food and beverages are considered for what they offer your body in the way of boosting your health. Before eating, pause for a second and ask yourself, "how many beneficial nutrients such as protein, good carbohydrates and healthy fats, does it contain?"
Will it work to boost my health or is it subtracting from it?
Nutrient dense foods are colourful and full of flavour (think of all the colors nature has generously provided us in fresh vegetables and fruits), fulfilling and satiating. They give the body what it needs to operate efficiently, with vitality. We eat less often because our body is not screaming out for nutrients.
On the flip-side, nutrient-poor foods (processed) force the body to prioritise and compromise other functions and tissues to obtain the nutrients it is lacking (an overweight body is screaming loudly for high quality nutrients). This throws the delicate appetite regulation hormones "out of whack" increasing food cravings and causing us to eat more than we should and need.
Slowly but surely, this healthy approach to eating in which we concentrate on adding nutrient-dense foods becomes a habit and literally changes the way we eat. Add enough of these super nutrient foods to your diet, and you'll start to see positive changes in your weight and health, naturally.
This positive reinforcement, observing your life change for the better, gets you super motivated to take your nutritional lifestyle changes to another level.
Pushing out and eliminating junk foods and replacing them with healthier options also allows your body to detoxify, another major step towards losing that unwanted weight.
Your metabolism moves towards a fat-burning state rather than a fat-storing state. Exactly what's needed to lose excess weight.
This nutrient-rich food approach is a positive, realistic way to think about eating and it's backed by science.
Recent studies confirm that people do not get fat from eating too much, nor do they get fat from eating fat as was previously believed. What we now know is that we get fat from eating the wrong types of fat and the wrong types of carbohydrates.
We get fat from eating the wrong foods. Therefore, becoming and staying overweight, could be viewed as a symptom of eating an improper diet. One that is not natural to our chemistry and biology – one that relies on chemically-laden processed "dead" foods.
Eating the wrong kinds of foods, particularly the wrong carbohydrates, works against us. It turns on the "fat storing switch" leading to weight gain, especially in the abdominal area. But the damage doesn't stop there. It continues to affect our health in other negative ways and, if ignored, can and will lead to disease.
Once your fat-burning/fat storing hormones are rebalanced (through proper diet) the natural side effect of this is your excess fat just melts away! Additionally, once your ideal body weight is achieved, you'll be able to maintain it so much easier, without effort or struggle.
Remember, you can't out-exercise a poor diet. No amount of exercise or physical activity can compensate for the damage a poor diet does to the body cells and systems.
Clean your diet up, get sufficient challenging exercise and watch how your body, and your mind respond and give back what you've given them. Longevity, super-health and energised vitality!
• Carolyn Hansen is co-owner of Anytime Fitness.