If being perfectly healthy and “good” all the time were easy… everyone would do it.
We all know it’s hard to resist temptation every now and then, despite how dedicated we are to our health. Especially when it comes to what we put in our mouths.
Why do we make it even harder by being so darn hard on ourselves?
Look, I’m not saying to throw up your hands and give up. Or scarf down a box of Twinkies.
But we sometimes put too much judgment on food. Or on ourselves for what we just ate.
And by doing so, we completely deprive ourselves of the enjoyment that food can bring.
Eating can be one of life’s greatest pleasures, if we’re being honest.
Many of us have a “relationship” with food, like any of the relationships in our lives. And if that relationship is filled with guilt, shame, fear or pain, it’s a recipe for a lot of anxiety and depression.
Like any of the relationships in our lives, right?
Which can lead to, you guessed it, more food, or choices that are poorer for us in the long run.
Picture yourself eating a piece of pie, or whatever your own Kryptonite is.
Now, I don’t eat pie every day, or every week. But when I do, I really let myself enjoy it.
I notice how rich and delicious it is. How it reminds me of my grandma, who used to make an apple pie that has my mouth watering just thinking about it.
Or the shoo fly pies you can only really get in Pennsylvania that are almost worth the probably 18 hour drive it would take for me get one. (Yes, I know you can get them through the mail, don’t remind me…)
The point is, that same experience is very different if you spend the entire time thinking about how “bad” you are for eating it.
When you allow yourself to savor your treat, you’ll actually eat less, believe me.
I also do one other thing when I decide to cheat. I have a bite, and then I decide if it’s worth it. Sometimes, that cookie is so delicious, so fresh and warm and gooey, it’s so, so worth it.
But sometimes it’s dry. Or crumbly. Or just an ordinary cookie that you could easily take a bite and pass on the rest.
Still, it’s about being in the moment. Enjoy it and enjoy it fully. Or decide to pass. And either way, hold back the judgements, both on yourself and on those around you who decide to indulge.
When it comes down to it, food is just food. Some are better to your body, some not as much. But that pie isn’t “bad” and neither are you for eating a piece.
Always remember, perfection is a bit of a fantasy.
And if being perfect means never eating stuffing on Thanksgiving, or a piece of birthday cake, or hot chicken when I visit the folks in Nashville… I’m never going to be perfect.
I’m ok with that. You should be too.
Enjoy the rest of your weekend.
Editor, Patriot Health Alliance