What kind of fuel should you choose?
You wouldn’t put diesel in an unleaded car would you?
So why wouldn’t you treat your body with the same respect?
We need to fuel our bodies effectively in order to promote healing. So many of us fuel our bodies with food that doesn’t serve us. For example, we consume foods that we know can have adverse effects on our digestion, (heartburn, reflux, bloating, constipation or diarrhoea) yet we still eat them!
We eat foods that contain ingredients with little or no nutritional value. These are in the form of preservatives, additives and E numbers. Our body doesn’t know how to process these chemicals and so it puts a strain on our digestion. If you can’t pronounce it, don’t eat it! You all know what happens when you put diesel in an unleaded combustion system- it stops working!
There are more clues, other than digestive complaints, as to whether a food serves your particular body. These can include: mood swings; fluctuations in energy; skin issues; brain fog or headaches; inability to loose weight; poor memory and autoimmune conditions to name just a few. The biggest thing you can do to help you put the right fuel in your body is listen to it.
The symptoms I’ve mentioned above are not normal for our bodies. They may be symptoms YOU are used to but it doesn’t have to be that way. Join our Facebook group and follow our free 21 day food challenge to find out how to create a food journal, notice symptoms and identify foods that don’t serve you at the moment.
A diet that serves YOU will look different to other people’s, but we should all aim to eat as much ‘real’ food as possible. Food that has grown, swam or roamed around the earth. Foods without fancy packaging or ingredients lists. A top tip here is that the ‘real’ food tends to be placed around the edges of the supermarket or within the first few aisles. Next time you’re in the supermarket ask yourself- does this food serve me?
Am I respecting my body as much as I respect my car?
If not, you get to explore- WHY NOT?
How often should I fuel my body?
So now we’ve discussed the kind of fuel we need, let’s think about how often our bodies need this fuel. You guessed it I’m going to use the car analogy again! If your car is running on empty and you’ve got the whole day ahead of you, would you risk not filling it up? Of course not! It would ruin your day to breakdown and have no way of getting to your next destination. So I ask again do you respect your body as much as your car? What do you think happens to a body that has no fuel? It breaks down just like a car would!
EXCEPT it’s not as noticeable. This is the worrying part. Our bodies are much more complex so they are able to keep going. Our bodies keep going by sacrificing none essential systems and processes. These include: hormone production, healing, metabolism, fertility and higher level brain function. If the body finds itself short on fuel on a daily basis it can shut down these none essential processes in order to survive. It’s a clever trick left over from our primitive ancestors. The well know fight or flight survival mode. If you were under threat from a predator or needed to survive a particularly harsh drought or famine then the last thing your body needs is to be thinking about producing offspring or using up vital energy to heal your body.
Not only do systems and processes shut down, but a lack of fuel on a regular basis causes cortisol (the stress hormone) to spike. This is caused by your body trying to regulate your blood sugar. Prolonged raised raised cortisol levels can lead to a number of chronic health issues such as: high blood pressure, weight gain, infertility, increased urination, increased anxiety, trouble sleeping, libido changes, susceptibility to infection and acne or other skin issues.
Ideally you should aim to eat food belonging to all the main food groups at each meal time. Your body requires proteins and fats throughout the day not just with your evening meal. Just think if you only eat them at 6pm each day by the time you have woken up in the morning your body is out of this type of fuel and you’ve got the whole day ahead of you. It’s thought to be good to eat protein within 30mins of waking in order to kick start processes and it also helps to lower cortisol levels.
Start your day with a varied breakfast and eat at regular intervals after that. If you’re in the habit of skipping meals you may find that you’re not hungry at the usual mealtimes. This is because your metabolism has been suppressed (remember your body is in fight or flight mode because it’s under threat from a famine effecting your tribe!) It will take time to recover so you should start slowly when you introduce your new regime of eating regularly. Once you begin with this change you will find your energy levels balance out and you won’t need to survive on sugary snacks and caffeine to make it through the day. You should aim to eat the recommended calories for your gender but really just focus on enjoying eating again!
Once you’ve got the best fuel for your body going in at regular intervals, your body will heal with ease. Why choose to struggle when such a simple change can have such a huge impact on your life?
I’d love to hear about any changes you make after reading this post so please comment below.