Why You’re Struggling With Changing To A Healthy Diet And What You Can Do About It
It can be a difficult process to start eating healthily.
Moving from an unhealthy diet to a healthy one can be difficult for various factors, and can change person to person. Research shows that unhealthy foods impact almost all aspects of our life; our productivity, our behavior and personality and most crucially our health.
With a bit of direction and an understanding of how your physiology works, things can start to become a lot easier as we make sense of a multi-faceted issue.
Humans are creatures of habits, and so when we decide to make a rapid change overnight in any of our habits, especially when it’s one that triggers certain pleasure centres within our brains, such as sugary food, it can become a complicated process. Nevertheless, it is one well worth the effort!
There has been a significant push in healthy eating in the media as well as within our clinics and doctor’s surgeries. The West, in particular, has felt enormous amounts of strain over the last ten to fifteen years especially with many health-related issues such as obesity.
Frozen foods, microwaveable meals and fast foods took a large seat at our dinner tables in and after the 1950s when we were cultivating new freezing methods, new ways of processing foods, especially meats, along with new fast-food options and questionable means of preserving foods. The incline of these food options, with very little research at the time led to the massive influx of diet-related health issues.
We have a lot more knowledge now than we did when this problem began, and the majority of us are doing a lot to add healthier options as much as possible. Supermarkets and other convenience stores offer a broad range of healthy eating choices, with health information easily seen on the front of packets, to make sticking to a healthy diet easier.
Why Is It So Difficult?
As much as anyone, I love to relax with some chocolate and a pack of crisps when I’m in need of an emotional pick-me-up. It works when I’m eating, but the next day I do feel more tired, bloated, and with a few new blemishes. We can’t moan at ourselves for comfort eating as our wiring forces us to do it!
When we were hunter-gatherers, many moons ago, when we would find, say, a fig tree, one would eat as many figs in one helping as we could fit in us. Our ancestors were not sure when someone else would come and steal their goods, so they stuffed themselves. Over the years the reward centres of our brains started equating sweet foods with good times.
Eating is a necessity, and there’s nothing wrong with having a good eat, especially when we may need some comfort, but it needs to be the best food so you can feel as good as possible.
The reason why going from some chocolate or crisps to avocado on toast or a fruit salad is that when we quickly need something to fill a hole, rather that be hunger or emotional, we crave sugar and salt as they are essential to our bodies. Our minds just get the bad sugar and salt mixed up with the other good stuff.
How Can We Make Healthy Eating Easier?
Research has shown, that, once you have taken ‘junk’ food out of your diet, your cravings for it do diminish over time. The more we devour it, the more we want it. But it isn’t easy just to replace delicious ice-cream with something else that will inevitably not be as tasty and gluttonous, especially when we try and do it all at once.
People see better results when they start changing meals and snacks over a longer period, one at a time. It also gives time for our bodies to adjust to new minerals and probable withdrawal from caffeine and sugar as well as other preservatives.
Many people find changing to a healthy diet difficult because they try to change too many things at once and don’t give the body time to adjust to the new chemicals. Although it’s much better in the long run, we can get distracted by the adjustment period as we feel worse off than before: fatigued and possibly irritable from the brain not getting its pleasure centre hit.
Once you fight past this change and give yourself the time you deserve to do this properly, you will find it much easier. There are many pages on the internet as well as professionals to seek the guidance off if you’re unsure what foods can replace the foods you’ve been eating. Many people will reward themselves by other means than junk food such as a trip to the cinema, or a visit to a friend’s to help them through this period.
What we know from countless reports and statistics is that moving to a healthier diet reduces our chances of many illnesses and diseases, as well as supporting a healthier mind. Our complexions improve, so does our behaviour and weight.
Eating healthier is more convenient than we think. Another reason why we may give up is that we don’t believe that we have the time. In many cases, this is entirely true, but many don’t realise that once we have gotten into the swing of eating better, they will be more alert, have more energy and therefore be more proactive giving more time to prepare and enjoy healthier meals.
As we’ve discussed, the difficulties facing us when starting to eat healthily are grand, our physiology and lifestyle get confused at the change, but it’s our physiology and lifestyle which will improve ten-fold once it’s in place.
You need to acknowledge that you are worth feeling good and being healthy. There is only one of you, and the best version of you will be one that feels healthy and able. Making some changes here and there, and going slowly with these changes, with positive reinforcements from professionals, if you need it, will get you where you need to be.
It’s never too late to start making those small changes; you can start with your next meal and go from there, good luck!