Don't Change Your Diet, Change Your Relationship With Food
Never diet again
What is a diet?
It's a one-sided story told from the perspective of those who are looking to monetize an idea.
“Research shows” — blah blah blah, here's a picture of someone who looked like the hamburglar. Now here’s that same person who appears to have resurrected Michael Angelo to put the finishing touches on their abs.
What I’m about to tell you is not a diet; it's a way of enjoying food thoroughly, it’s a way of using your intelligence to discover the secret of eating to be happy.
You’re Eating Way Too Much
Do you feel full after eating each meal? Are you pushing the plate away only when you literally cannot eat anymore? If so, your tongue has hijacked your intelligence.
Keeping the body and mind in a delicate balance is the key to everything. If you just had physical and mental balance, all your problems would evaporate immediately. It’s 2021, and people have all sorts of distorted ideas of what it means to be in balance.
Balance means that neither the physical nor the mental experiences disturb your peace. There is an oscillating nature of both the mind and the body. One minute you are in pain; the next minute, pleasure. The minute after that, your imagination begins running wild in some dark corner of thought that haunts you.
When you overeat, you throw your whole system out-of-whack. It disturbs not only your mind but also your body. When the stomach stretches beyond its normal parameters, all your other organs are stressed. The stress to your nervous system causes you to release extra hormones and enzymes to help break down the food.
There is a fixed amount of available enzymes for digestion when you decide to eat. If you overfeed yourself, extra food will have to sit and rot until your body can produce more enzymes to break down the unnecessary food.
Your esophagus may even fill up with stomach acid because it has nowhere else to go, resulting in heartburn.
Excessive consumption not only affects you physically, but it also affects you mentally. Notice how your thoughts change with you are filled to the brim? Self-deprecating thoughts are not foreign to those who continually overeat.
Your body will never experience continual harmony if you fill your stomach up beyond what it can digest.
Typically when we eat, we are semi-conscious. We may appear to be conscious. But next time, look at a friend or co-worker who’s eating. You’ll see that 1000 yard stare that war vets have mastered. They are awake — relatively. One part of them is eating, the other: thinking. The thinking mind rides its roller coaster of dreams while it misses out on the total experience of enjoying food.
You’re Not Hungry Anymore
We usually think little of being hungry while actively eating. In fact, right when your waiter/waitress or your incredible wife/girlfriend/boyfriend/other sets down your feeding tray — you forget all about being hungry. This “forgetting” about being hungry prevents us from “remembering” when we are full.
Now you may be wondering, what does it mean to “remember” when we are full? As I said before, we are all on a scale of relative wakefulness. Let’s say a stone is on one end of the spectrum and Buddha on the other. We can assume most of us are somewhere in the middle. When you are eating, thinking goes on uninterrupted. Only when your eating disrupts the balance of your system do you recognize you are full. See how food is affecting your thoughts? Whatever is occurring in your physical body is changing what's happening in your mind.
Stop thinking while you eat and fully experience your meal. If you do this, you will “remember” that you are full. You forget you are full because your thoughts are preoccupied with something else.
Thoughts cease when our awareness is absorbed in the experience.
What does it mean to be full? Simply put: you’re not hungry anymore. When you are neither hungry nor full, you are balanced.
Balance Is The Key
You fill up too much, and you feel sick. Why? Because your body becomes sick. Then, your mind becomes unhappy with thoughts of ill feelings. It’s a lose-lose game we play with food.
The problem with dieting is that we rarely think of this concept of overconsumption.
On a ketogenic diet, people say to themselves, “Well, all I gotta do is get rid of carbs. Then I can eat as much fat and protein as I want.” They get rid of carbs without fixing the problem of overeating. And Keto will work! I lost 100lbs on keto, but it was a bandaid on an issue of over-indulgence.
When people intermittent fast, they say, “I only eat from noon to 7 pm. In that time, I get all my calories I should be in eating in 24 hours.” What are they doing? They’re stuffing their faces in a short time to get that satisfaction of feeling filled up. Not everyone does this, but many of you might be overeating.
Overeating means you eat past not being hungry any longer.
Remember, balance. Think balance when you are eating. Repeat the word “balance” to yourself as you eat. What will this do? It will force you to think of the feeling in your stomach. You will no longer overeat because you will see the futility of it. You only hurt yourself when you overeat.
After a meal, you should feel like you could go out for a run. I’m not saying you should run, but you should feel like you can.
What To Eat?
Every one of you should do an elimination diet sometime in your life. Knowing which foods are causing inflammation inside you is crucial.
I’m not going to tell you exactly which foods to eat, because I don't know you. Only you know you. Choose the foods that cause the most negligible reaction to your body. If something makes you jittery, get rid of it. If another food makes you sluggish and tired, throw it away. Some foods might make you itchy; get rid of these. Choose foods based on assimilation with your digestive system. If you eat something that digests without any noticeable discomfort, it’s probably safe.
Fruits: Snack on them. Use fruits as a quick pick-me-up for energy. They are the fastest food group to be processed. Don’t make a whole meal out of fruit—snack on it.
Vegetables: These should be the bulk of what you consume. Vegetables are a crucial source for adequate water supply as well. The cleanest, purest water is in your vegetables. Chew your vegetables. Your teeth are the best juicer you have; grind and mash those leafy greens with those highly evolved pearly whites.
Meat: Digestion struggles the most with meat. It takes an army of enzymes to break it down. Limited quantities are the answer. If you can, stick to fish. There are some crucial amino acids and proteins in meat. With access to supplementation, you can accomplish any fitness goal without meat.
Where To Start
Observe yourself as you eat. Keep a watchful eye on your feelings of hunger and fullness. If you are no longer hungry, stop eating. You should feel as if you can go out for a long run after you eat. If you feel that you need a wheelbarrow after wolfing down a sushi boat, you overdid it.
“Balance, balance, balance,” repeat it to yourself. Your body and mind work at peak efficiency when they are not hindered by each other. Just think, if you’ve got poison ivy all over your body, how well do you think you’ll solve a cross-word puzzle when your whole body itches? You’re about to get in the ring for your first fight, but you get a call that a family member has passed; where is your concentration now?
Whatever happens to the physical body affects the mind. And whatever happens to the mind affects the body. The two connect like hot and cold. Wherever one goes, the other must follow.
Forget dieting. I'm not saying diets don't work. But if you change your relationship with food to make it work for you and not against you, you’ll never have to diet again.
Eat whatever the hell you want. You worked for your money, and you spend it on what you like. Make sure you get full enjoyment out of what you spend your greenbacks on. Don't let your tongue take over. Use your intelligence. When you start eating to a level of satisfaction and not overindulgence, you’ll see how radically it can change your life.
Food is one of our strongest attachments. When we clearly understand that our biology is just energy in, energy out, we can fill our bellies with the foods that will give us the maximum output, with minimum input. When we overconsume, we get maximum input with minimal output.
Love yourself and appreciate your body. Your body and mind will thank you when inflammation stops and uninterrupted mental fluctuations subside.