When someone says the word nutrition, what comes to your mind? For most people, it’s just food. So, when people ask me, “Farah, what do you do?” and I say I’m a nutritionist, I am immediately bombarded with questions on how to lose weight.
You can probably guess the usual questions. They go something like this.
How do I lose weight?
How do I keep weight off?
Should I eat this?
Is this going to make me fat?
While I’m definitely an advocate for healthy weight loss and feeling fit, my life philosophy is all about looking at nutrition from a holistic view.
Be healthy—whatever that means to you. When my clients focus on being healthy, this often brings about a sustainable body weight.
Our bodies love us. They want us to be happy and healthy. They want to do what’s best for us. They want to keep on thriving.
Our bodies want to be alive!
When you are striving for health, your body often reaches a healthy weight organically. When you choose not to take care of yourself, even in small ways like stress or lack of exercise, the body may try to compensate and therefore malfunction. We are highly-advanced computerized systems after all.
What happens when your body “malfunctions?”
You feel depressed or anxious, develop poor skin, feel fatigued all the time, have poor digestion, and, yes, gain weight.
But proper nutrition doesn’t just include nourishing your body—it also means nourishing your mind, soul and external life. From my studies and my work, I’ve discovered that this means positive thinking, honoring your feelings and surrounding yourself with people who make you feel better about yourself are three key components to a healthy existence.
Many factors influence why and when we eat. If we just ate when we were hungry and only ate what we knew was good for us, then we’d all be healthy.
But as you probably may know from years of eating, we all eat for different reasons and are different kinds of eaters. The habits we develop in childhood include the way we view life and food.
Try to remember back to when you were a child. What sort of food were you given when you were happy, sad, celebrating or even just as your daily diet?
If you were raised with food as a comfort tactic, you will probably reach to certain kinds of food for comfort as an adult.
Very few people weren’t given food as a comfort mechanism.
Most people are emotional eaters. We are human beings, not human machines. We feel a lot of feelings and we feed them—in one way or another. And it’s usually not healthy food.
Be honest. How often do you reach for a carrot when you’re stressed?
My philosophy on nutrition is to create an integrative and comprehensive approach to your well-being. My goal for you, dear readers, is not weight loss—my goal is balance and peace of mind.
People often want the glamour and public recognition of weight loss. Balance and peace of mind come second. But, when you lose weight without dealing with your emotional triggers, you’re a lot more likely to gain that weight back.
How many times has this happened to you?
You lost weight, you felt happy, something sad happens, you emotionally eat and—bam!—the weight is back. Maybe even more than before. The cycle continues.
Through working with clients I’ve discovered that in order to start on a path of health and happiness, you need to ask yourself one very important and yet shockingly simple question—-what in my life is stopping me from being healthy? Start by fixing that problem—not the symptoms of weight gain or poor skin or fatigue or anything else.
By being honest with yourself. Give yourself some tough love. You can take it.
And once you answer that question, you can begin to break the cycle of making poor nutrition and wellness choices. You can eat as clean and healthy as you want, but without the intent, it won’t make a difference in the long run.
Keep the intent in your head that you’re getting healthy for you. To keep yourself fit. To ward off disease. To live a long and happy life to share with your family and friends. This works for so many people.
Why would this work for you? Because you’re making healthy choices for yourself.
You’re not choosing to fit into a societal standard of beauty.
You are nourishing your mind, body and spirit.
It just so happens that in doing that, your body feels nourished as well.
I want people to find their nutrition path with their mind, body and spirit.
Think healthy, be healthy and feel healthy. And most of all, do what makes you happy and your body will become happy.
In good health,
I’d love to hear from you. What are some of your fitness and nutrition philosophies? Tell me in the comments or on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and tag @thefaraheffect.