The Way I Eat and My Thoughts on "Diets"
I like to eat clean and whole foods, but want to avoid labeling the way I eat, because sometimes I cheat. (And rhyme). I find fault with following “diets” because that often implies a lack of sustainability, and I believe that finding a way to live and eat that can convert into a lifestyle is far more important than dieting. Whether it is becoming more accustomed to new foods over time or gradually eliminating the harmful ones, outright restriction and a short-term mindset can lead to an even sharper rebound.
Personally, in cooking and eating I mostly combine some elements of Paleo as far as the importance of fresh produce, protein and healthy fats are integral, but I don't need to and will not give up my love of oatmeal and peanuts and hummus. I end up eating mostly gluten free foods and clean carbs, not because I need to restrict myself, but because I believe that it makes me feel and perform the best, but still can’t resist some goldfish or gorgonzola crackers sometimes. I’ve learned that carbs are key to building muscle, and I’ve learned that the less sugar I eat the less I crave it, but will always have a special weakness in my heart for chocolate and ice cream, and that’s okay too. I appreciate the principles of being vegan, but I love meat and eggs a little bit more. Overall, I’ve learned that it is important to tailor the way you eat to the type of exercise that you do, but more importantly, to listen to yourself and see what makes you feel the best. It is a long process and a trial and error basis, and one that I am still trying to refine and figure out for myself.
I have found that one word that keeps coming back to me when thinking about nutrition is balance. There will always be ups and downs, because as disappointing as it is to me and probably to you, no one is perfect. Instead, I strive to realize that consistency in my actions, sustainability in my habits, and a positive and productive mindset in the long run is the best way by which I can measure my success.