By Nicole Beauregard, a personal trainer at The DOGPOUND
It’s time that we take a sensible approach to nutrition and recognize our bio-individuality: there’s no one-size-fits-all diet. Most nutrition books tell you what to eat without any reference to age, gender, size, lifestyle, ethnic background, or personal preference. But the truth is that the food that is perfect for your unique body may make another person gain weight and feel lethargic.
Despite the nutrition trends you’ve read in your favorite health resource, It’s important to not get stuck in dietary dogma and instead eat intuitively, trusting your body to guide you to the foods that best support you.
Fortunately, you already have free, 24-hour access to the world’s most sophisticated research facility: you’re living in it. Your body is a highly intelligent resource that has evolved helpful instincts to keep you alive and well.
Bloating, exhaustion, and weight gain are all signs that something you are eating or how you are eating it isn’t working for you. Listening to the messages your body sends you before they become unbearable can prevent many chronic illnesses, doctor visits, medications, and operations.
To develop a deeper relationship with your body, try the breakfast experiment: explore eating a different breakfast every day for a week and write down how you feel right after the meal and two hours later.
Quickly you’ll find what energizes you and what drains you. Certain foods will cause indigestion; certain foods will enhance your ability to concentrate at work; certain foods will leave you feeling lethargic. It is a very empowering experience to realize you don’t need to follow someone else’s guidance, but can trust your own intuition to find the diet that works for you.
What’s more important to your health than food
You may not realize that there are other factors in your life that are more important than food for your health. What we eat is often secondary to the energy in our lives that fulfills us physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. The four forms of primary food truly nourish you and make your life extraordinary include:
Relationships: We all have a need to give and receive love, so prioritizing your relationships with spouses, siblings, parents, friends, and coworkers are key to ensuring your long-term happiness.
Career: Work should mean more than just a paycheck – it should fulfill you on an emotional and intellectual level. It’s important to try to find the work you love, or love the work you find.
Physical Activity: Our bodies thrive on movement and quickly degenerate without it. Whether it’s yoga, jogging, surfing, or taking your dog for a walk, find the type of regular exercise that energizes you.
Spirituality: Spiritual nutrition can feed us on a very deep level. Whether it’s daily meditation, attending religious services, or taking a walk in nature, becoming more spiritual can add incredible meaning to your life.