I love the body positivity movement and have been doing well not counting calories and not weighing myself every day. I do believe as long as you are healthy that is all that matters, you should love and respect yourself and your body at all times no matter what.
What I have been saying for years is mental health can be managed with (number 1 exercise) and number 2 food (there are other things that have helped and I will get to them in this blog). Food is directly relating to the health of your mind and basically, the way you eat is correlated to how you feel and how your mind feels. What I am saying is what you eat can help you manage your mental illness. Not completely, however I believe it can help. I feel like we are just beginning to learn how food is related to the mind. And what I’ve know for years is that the food you eat can help your mind or hurt your mind and again help your mental health or hurt your mental health.
I follow the 75 / 25 rule, 75 percent of the food I eat is “healthy” and 25 percent is maybe not so “healthy.” (I put healthy in quotes because it seems like every day healthy and unhealthy food definitions change, it can be very complicated at times when you follow the health industry). I love eating healthy however I have no shame in eating unhealthy foods and some days the ratio is different, it might be 90 / 10 one day and 60 / 40 another day. I do not measure the ratio every day, I listen to my body and feed my body what it needs.
For me, restricting from certain foods has a negative outcome. I’ve found that if I crave sugar and restrict all day, at night I want to eat every single sugary item in the house. This has happened to me, so I’ve learned to try fruit first and then if I am still craving a little sugar, I have it, I am not saying eat three donuts for a snack, but I have a little sugar, not a lot.
The 75 / 25 rule works for me and my health, I love to eat healthy and happy for my body and my mind. I feel like it takes a bit of time to figure out food especially if you have a mental illness, I’ve been on medication that causes weight gain since the beginning of my illness, so figuring out how to eat on this medication has been difficult however I’ve been able to figure it out. Another issue with food is if you are eating emotionally, sometimes people don’t realize that past struggles and pain in life is directly related to our relationship with food. It will take time to understand what to eat for your mind and your body, it took me a long time and I am still learning new ideas around health and food, and sometimes a therapist is needed, I definitely needed one and I did not even realize I needed a therapist.
And what needs to be remembered is that different eating habits will definitely be different for different people. My eating habits might not work for everyone as everyone is very unique and individual. So, remember to always talk to your doctor or health professional before any changes to your diet and / or starting any exercise or exercise routine. And never forget it’s absolutely awesome, amazing and wonderful to be happy, healthy and mad.