Thursday, January 20, 2011

"It's a Lifestyle Choice"

(c) 2009, Kathy Fannon

One night not too long ago, I knocked on my son’s bedroom door. I opened it and saw him sitting on his bed with his iPod. I tried to open the door all the way, but it bounced back at me. I pushed it open again, and again it bounced back. I looked around his room at all the clothes on the floor and behind the door. Is there carpet under there? I’d never know! I glanced around, pushed the door again and looked at him.

He said with a smile, “It’s a lifestyle choice”.

That’s my boy!

I went on about my night, thinking how funny he is. He always makes me laugh and is lots of fun to have around. “It’s a lifestyle choice” kept going through my head.

It’s that way with food too.

There are so many diet theories out there it could make your head spin. The Zone Diet, The Blood-Type Diet, Atkins, The Weigh Down Diet, Vegetariansim, Veganism, Raw Foods, Ayurvedic, Macrobiotics, The Brown Rice Diet, and on it goes! And each diet claims to be the best for you. “If you eat this, you’ll never get this [you fill in the blank].”

The problem with a lot of diets is that people see it as a short-term fix for a specific problem. But what happens when you go off the prescribed diet and back to the bad habits? The problem comes back.

Part of my training at IIN is in regards to bio-individuality. Each person needs different things. For one person, strictly fruits and vegetables is perfect, but for someone else it’s not. One may need a significant amount of meat, while somebody else may feel sluggish eating a small portion. I know of some people who need a little fat (butter, sour cream, etc) at each meal to feel satisfied and some who wouldn’t touch it.

Whatever ‘plan’ you choose, make sure it’s something that can be a lifestyle, something that you can maintain for a lifetime.

And when you’re out for dinner and someone passes the basket of chips and salsa, don’t say, “I can’t have that,” instead, remind yourself that you choose not to eat them. Or better yet, have the chips and salsa and treat yourself.

Once in awhile it’s ok to have the ‘bad’ food. Consider your surroundings and who you’re with. If you’re comfortable and feeling loved, those chips and salsa can be just as nourishing as a big salad with tofu cubes!

One of my favorite diet theories at IIN is the 90/10. If you eat right 90% of the time, the 10% when you don’t, it’s ok. It gives you the freedom to enjoy the things you love on occasion without guilt.

Make your food choices a lifestyle, a way you live your life, not a diet to achieve quick results.

Then when somebody asks why you’re not pigging out on the one-third pound burger, French fries and a diet soda at your local steakhouse, you can tell them, “It’s a lifestyle choice.”

Have you made a new lifestyle choice lately?  Please share!