Why do we eat too much? Why do we eat foods that we know aren't good for us or will make us feel unwell? There are many reasons why people eat and being hungry is way, way down the list.
I get a little bit exasperated with the whole "I quit sugar " movement for the following reasons:-
1. It can be misleading. Many of the "healthy, sugar free" dessert/biscuit/cake/raw dessert recipes all over social media are not sugar free or particularly healthy if the sugar is substituted with honey, maple or rice malt syrup - which is effectively just sugar. So next time you're tucking into a "sugar free" treat packed with medjool dates and rice malt syrup, be mindful that it is still high in sugar and eat it in moderation.
2. The whole quitting idea has negative connotations - it implies you are giving up something you like. If you want to have a treat, then have it. Enjoy it. Eat it slowly. Eat in moderation and don't beat yourself up. The more you deprive yourself, the more likely you are to binge or overeat.
3. I would prefer a message like "I choose to eat a balanced, nutritious diet because I value my health" but it's a bit long winded and not as catchy.
4. Healthy eating is not a competition about who can give up the most and feel the most virtuous; it's about balance, good choices and enjoying your food.
5. There has to be a middle ground. Many people find the idea of quitting sugar extremely daunting and so may do nothing. Gradually reducing sugar intake is far more achievable and your body will adapt in the process, with cravings for sugar lessening over time and improvements in health and wellness providing the motivation to carry on.
The take home message:- There is no doubt that too much sugar in your diet can be extremely harmful to your health. Reduce your intake of processed foods and refined carbohydrates. They simply aren't good for you. Eat plenty of wholefoods, vegetables and good quality protein and fats. Enjoy your food. Think about what you are eating. Don't feel guilty if you have a piece of cake - as part of a well balanced, nutritious diet, it's not a major issue.
The good news is that anyone can embark on the road to improving their health and nutrition and achieve real, lasting health, weight and fitness results. The key lies not in depriving yourself of what you enjoy but in learning how to eat the right foods which will nourish and invigorate your body and protect you from illness and chronic disease.