Chances are you have tried everything. You have tried cutting calories, but calories feed muscle, bones and fat so if you have done this and you are exercising or doing cardio then cutting calories is doing you harm. The more muscle that you lose the more likely it will be that you will have trouble losing belly fat, shrink your thighs and firm up your arms. It is not about the amount of calories that you eat, it is more important to pay attention to the type of calories you are eating. Not all calories are created equal – choose veggies whenever possible.
Ayurveda is recommending that fats such as ghee be an important part of your diet.
Have you stopped paying attention to dietary strategies since the 1990’s. It is likely that if you are still avoiding fat then you are not up to date with the most current nutritional information. Even 5,000 years ago, Ayurveda was recommending that fats such as ghee be an important part of your diet. This has trained most of us to eat on the run and choose quick sugary snacks like granola bars instead of eating more dense meals that are laden with fat. The more low fat food you eat, the more likely it is that you are eating snack foods that will increase your likelihood of insulin resistance and make you gain weight.
Our body’s ability to feel satiated is managed by the hormone leptin. If you don’t feel full then you keep eating and you gain weight. It is important to not be overly restrictive with your diet otherwise you are completely relying on willpower instead of allowing the hormone leptin to do its job and tell you when you are satiated and nourished. If you don’t feel the effects of leptin it is likely that your willpower will run out and you will go on a diet destroying binge. No one can be expected to maintain diet perfection forever. Reward yourself with delicious foods once a week as you transition to a more healthy way of eating.
For most of us, it is snacks that get us in trouble. If we have had a large enough meal or don’t go long between then we don’t crave sugary snack foods. If you find it necessary to eat a snack, choose organic fresh fruit whenever possible. There are so many superfood nutrients in fruit that you will get exactly what you need instead of a sugary snack.
The Ayurvedic strategies that can be utilized in order to stop these common dietary pitfalls are:
- Food Journal
A food journal only takes a few minutes each day in order to update and can help you easily track your meals. These days there are many phone apps that can do this for you or you can bring a small pad of paper and write down what you are eating. It can be helpful to include the time, type of food, amount of food and feeling after eating to really benefit from a food journal. After keeping a food journal for a month then you can look for patterns. These may be challenges that arise on certain days or certain types of food or certain times of the day that can cause challenges to keeping your goals.
- Eat Like a Lumberjack
This is definitely a stereotype but here are some characteristics of eating like a lumberjack. Make sure that you get enough protein early in the day. This can be meat or vegetable based protein. Protein eaten early in the day can easily be utilized for restoration of tissues. Lumberjacks don’t count carbohydrates, calories and fat they eat until they are full. This will help you to reset your body’s natural intelligence instead of thinking that your mind can micromanage your body. Eat after exercise. If you do vigorous exercise it can be helpful to replenish any nutrients lost by eating 45 minutes afterwards.
- Eat Meals that Satisfy
It is likely that if you don’t eat enough you will feel hungry and feel like you are starving all day long and then you will binge at the end of the day. By having a satisfying breakfast and lunch then you will reduce this feeling of hunger and be less likely to overeat after 4pm or to make diet mistakes later in the day.
By following these simple suggestions you will be on the fast track to health and maintaining your optimal weight.