Healthy eating is imperfect. When we make perfection the focus of achieving a healthier diet, we are setting ourselves up for failure.
My number one priority as a registered, licensed dietitian is to help my clients find happiness from the very beginning of their journey. If we can approach change from a positive, feel-good place, I know that the work that we do together will not only be successful, but will also be long-lasting, hopefully for a lifetime.
Have you ever tried a diet where you felt like you couldn’t go out to eat with friends? Or perhaps you told yourself you had not made enough progress to deserve a certain meal or treat. When we deprive and shame ourselves into healthier eating, we feed our minds and emotions with harmful words and feelings, even though we may feed our bodies with healthier foods. What we tell ourselves is important, and we must fully grasp this concept if we want to achieve and maintain healthy changes that will last us a lifetime.
What are some long-term goals you would like to accomplish through a healthier way of eating and living? Have you ever considered that the biggest obstacle preventing you from achieving your goals is your mindset, and not your will-power?
Unfortunately, a healthy diet does not have a simple formula that applies across the board. It varies from person to person, and it is about more than simply calories in-calories out.
Take a closer look at diets that have had short-term successes with limited or zero long-term research to back them up. A plan that promises you success in 30 days will likely lead you to to fall off the wagon in the same amount of time.
When we are fed up, frustrated and tired of feeling a certain way, we look for a quick fix just to provide some relief. We want to escape how we feel in that very moment. But before we act, we need to find out if these quick solutions are realistic, sustainable and most importantly, safe for the long haul. That isn’t always easy to research thanks to the overload of information that is out there on “healthy” eating.
Look at the bigger picture.
You may not want to hear this, but healthy eating should NOT be about the goal of weight loss or fitting into last year’s skinny clothes. I get it, I’ve thought it myself, but this way of thinking will not get us where we want to be…trust me. But it also is not as straight-forward as increasing fruits and vegetables, dodging red meat and completely cutting out junk foods. It’s not black and white, and side note, I am a huge advocate of indulging – especially when it comes to great pizza and dessert! So if you work with me, you can still have those things…in balance of course.
How we treat our bodies and the nutrients we provide them matters in everything we do. When we make lifestyle changes, they need to be reasonable and gradual. We can’t make a hasty decision to implement changes and expect those changes to last us a lifetime. We get one body, we should treat it with the utmost care and make our decisions wisely. We should also enjoy life in the process!
If you find yourself struggling to find a happy medium or balance, I encourage you to consider working with a dietitian to troubleshoot what is holding you back from living your happiest, healthiest life. Click HERE to learn more about my Nutrition Services.
Author: Erin Falls, MS, RDN. LDN, RYT
Erin is a Registered Dietitian and Yoga Instructor (RYT-200) in Charlotte, NC. She earned her Master’s in Nutrition from Winthrop University and Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Erin began practicing yoga in 2009 and completed her 200-hour Registered Yoga Teacher Training at Charlotte Yoga.
Erin empowers her clients to make smart food choices, own their actions and find their healthiest, happiest selves through her nutrition counseling and customized meal planning services. She is passionate about helping others create a healthier lifestyle that works for them while educating them on the most up to date, evidence-based nutrition information.