Often, in the health world, there is a big focus on weight.
When the focus only hones in on weight, there is excessive room for “cheating” and splurging. We all know a few processed treats here and there will not ruin weight loss goals, but is there a benefit to giving up these “treats” for good and choosing to eat healthy all the time?
The answer is, YES! There are many benefits to changing to a holistic healthy lifestyle, but there are a few major benefits to eating healthy all the time.
But first, let’s define “health,” because I don’t believe any person wants to or even should give up treats or comfort foods forever. Rather, we should begin to look at health from the perspective of fueling our body and enabling it to function at its best. Then, we can adapt treats, snacks, and comfort foods to do just that. Sounds easy enough right?
Here are 5 benefits of jumping on the healthy food train and eating healthy all the time:
1. Increased Energy
Did you know that fatigue is a symptom of an underlying problem? There are a lot of underlying metabolic processes happening within our body that need vitamins and other nutrients to function properly. These processes give us energy and stabilize it throughout the day. In order for this to happen effectively, we need to fuel our bodies with good nutrition at all times.
Fatigue is also something that plagues young girls and manifests in many different ways. The easiest way to decrease fatigue and increase energy is by changing your diet!
2. Mental Clarity
Brain fog, anyone? That lack of mental clarity that many doctors term “brain fog” is often a result of poor nutrition. (Google it! Or check out the book “Why Isn’t My Brain Working” on Amazon!) When we eat healthy all the time, choosing to skip the cheating and indulging in junk food, we can improve our mental clarity and maintain it over time.
Ever heard of systemic inflammation? I hadn’t until I was experiencing its detrimental effects on my life. Poor nutrition affects so many systems in our body, but especially our gut. And when our gut isn’t functioning right, it leads to inflammation throughout our body. Just Google systemic inflammation, and you’ll understand why avoiding it or reducing it is very important.
Good nutrition helps us to do this! Even one splurge of “junk food” though can increase inflammation in our body, so it’s beneficial to eat clean at all times!
4. Maintain Physical “Health”
Let’s go back to those underlying metabolic processes for a minute—our body has many systems that allow us to feel well and function well. We have all sorts of hormones, neurotransmitters, and chemical processes in our body that are responsible for our moods, energy, sleep, digestion, memory, heart functioning, etc.
In order to keep these processes running smoothly in our body, we need to offer it proper nutrients. Vitamins and minerals found in fresh veggies, fruit, healthy fats and high-quality meat all serve a purpose to fuel these critical functions of our body. It’s important to eat healthy all the time and not bog these functions down with ingredients our bodies were never designed to consume or digest.
5. Improved Mental Health
Mental illness plagues many, and people are continually searching for medicines and supplements to help improve their mental health. What we often forget though is that sometimes, even more, important than medicine and supplements (though both are great and necessary at times!), is simply healthy eating and supporting the proper functioning of neurotransmitters in the body.
There’s a great book by Dr. Datis Kharazzian called “Why Isn’t My Brain Working?” that explains the science behind this in depth if you want to explore it more.
Well, next time you are thinking about doing a fad diet or splurging on junk food in the midst of a healthy lifestyle change, think about these things mentioned above.
Health is so much more than weight loss and choosing healthy foods is about more than calories or fat content. Learning to read ingredient labels, choosing fresh foods or truly clean packaged foods at all times is so vital to the functioning of our bodies!
I’ll leave you with this quote: “To eat is a necessity, but to eat intelligently is an art.” (Francois de la Rochefoucauld). Go. Be an artist—design your food and your life carefully.