Why I gave up on eating healthy

You know how there’s a lot of striving going on right now to eat healthy and clean, especially in the new year? Honestly, I used to strive for perfection in it, ugh. Now…not so much – and I feel and look better and happier, I might add. :)

Yesterday I was having tea with a girlfriend of mine who also happens to be a health coach. We were laughing as we both shared our journey of being “strict” in eating “healthy” and how over time its shifted quite dramatically. So much so that a follower berated her for posting a recipe with sugar in it (gasp!).

Food was necessary to heal our bodies (hormones, digestion, eating disorder, auto-immune disease, depression) but more importantly it was the conduit and tangible starting point to heal our hearts and allow us to come ALIVE again (and be totally awesomesauce).

Feeling happy, free, and alive was what I was searching for, not clean food.

Do you really want to eat “healthy” & follow rules or you want the feeling, freedom, & goodness it gives you?

Here are 5 thoughts on eating and living so you too can ease up and let food be a conduit for you – not the end-all-be-all.

TRUTH: nutrition isn’t so black and white as we hope (I studied over 100 different dietary theories!). There’s a lot of grey because we’re all different… and that grey can lead to freedom instead of confusion and self-deprecation, if we let it.

Eating AND Living Freedom Thoughts:

Choose Quality – Don’t settle for bland, boring, and processed food that you grab, without thinking, on-the-go. Upgrade your food choices to the highest quality and beauty you can find/afford and know you did your best. We eat with our eyes and our taste buds. When we choose quality instead of “eating healthy” and “shoulds”, we change our choices with ease and feel freedom through devotion to ourselves vs. discipline against ourselves.

Eat with Gusto – There’s a moment in the movie Amelie where it highlights the simple pleasures in life, one of them being the pleasure of cracking the top of a crème brulée. I get giddy thinking about doing that. OR, think about the crispness of sweet potato fries or the smoothness of chocolate. Food is meant to be enjoyed to the fullest. Enjoy, savor, and zestfully eat whatever you have chosen. Eat with vigor. Enthusiasm. FULLY enjoy everything you eat. Eat slow. Feel the textures. Let your taste buds come alive. LET yourself go “OOOH my goodness this is so good.” Pair foods that go well together (to you). Make love to that food.

Eat Intuitively – (this one is lacking in 95% of the population) 1) Don’t measure cups, grams, calories or 100-calorie packs – seriously, if this worked don’t you think we’d be a healthier nation? 2) Don’t eat just because it’s breakfast or 12pm, but you feel no actual hunger. This usually leads to overeating, being pissed off, and completely out of tune with your body. DO start eating when your body physically tells you it’s hungry (growling, pangs, tightening) and stop when it tells you that you are full. It’s not enjoyable to keep eating once you’re full, so essentially – stop when you stop enjoying.

Eat for what YOUR body needs – pay attention to which foods make you feel alive, energized, and light AND pay attention to what foods make you feel sluggish, constipated, depressed and tired. Don’t choose your food because Dr. Oz or your paleo neighbor (love them both) say “this” is the best way to eat. Choose the foods that make you feel the way you want to feel.

Feed your Body AND your Soul – if you focus on food all the time and don’t give any delicious juiciness to your life, well duh, you’re going to eat food to make you feel better. So before you try to “eat healthy” try adding a little juice to your soul. Develop a taste for your life.

Need more bite-sized, fun, and uber easy ways to get there? Join my free Skinny Dip Society 21-day Challenge – starts this Saturday, February 1st. Over 1000 ladies are joining the sisterhood.

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As for the question “does food matter?”

I won’t lie and say go eat cake for every meal. Food does matter – it can change your mood, body, energy, sex drive, productivity, and outlook on life. But…we can study the “right” foods ’til we’re blue in the face, read hundreds of self-help books, chat over social media, and create never ending to-do lists, but until we create real connection, uncover and pursue our desires, intentionally have more fun, romance, and adventure, and live in alignment with our values and beauty…the food won’t do diddly {so just stop that silliness}. Gotta have both, beautiful.

>>>>> In the comments below, I’d love to know what your equivalent of “cracking crème brulée” is and the next time you’re going to let yourself indulge it with gusto. (I’m hoping today)

To eating quality, indulging your senses & feeling free,
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14 thoughts on “Why I gave up on eating healthy

  1. Hey Katie,
    For me it is Umm Alli. Traditional desert in Qatar. similar connection to the bread pudding but so tasty. I do have cholestrol and I am nervous about what I am eating. With two younger kids, I dont get much time to exercise so I am careful about what I eat. However, I went to the twonhall meeting from the office to a restaurent and they served super yummy Umm Alli. I even had two portions as I was enjoying. After the lunch, I must say I was feeling guilty. Reading your post in the morning made me feel better. Thank you
    Vani

    • Vani, I looked up Umm Alli. It looks delicious, indulgent and rich! :) yum. While we do need to treat our bodies fabulously and nourish them, the nervousness and self-beating don’t do us any good. Keep asking these questions and upgrading quality and I can’t wait to hear back from you in a couple weeks how the freedom and living piece shifts things for you. Thanks for sharing your creme brulee (and a yummy one at that!). xo

  2. I feel like my equivalent can change weekly. Lately, it’s been a big bowl of carob oatmeal with coconut butter, coconut oil, and sunflower seeds! i’m currently doing a 3 month candida sugar detox (round 2). it’s been really tough this time around and i feel like i’ve been struggling with the strict clean-eating diet for almost a year, trying to get my gut in order. it sometimes seems like this constant cycle i can’t shake. this post is super encouraging!! and while, i can’t indulge in a bowl of coconut milk ice cream or fruit smoothie, your other thoughts are so helpful. and so true! thanks so much for sharing! :)

    • Jen – I totally understand the candida piece. I dealt with it for a little while. Researchers have actually found that when we take one bite and savor it for 5 minutes, we actually feel full and satisfied after. Crazy, right? With what you can eat, savor the hell out of it :) And join the challenge starting Saturday. I found for ME that part of my digestion/candid issues was that I was focusing so much on the food that I wasn’t allowing enough fun in my life. That was the kicker for me. :)

  3. My new fancy is homemade magic shell. Approx. 3 T coconut oil, to 1 cup of dark chocolate. Microwave till liquid. Poor over ice cream or frozen mashed banana. Healthily obsessed.

    • OOOOH yes, homemade magic shell is the perfect formula for savoring the crackle, the crunch, the smoothnesss, the sweetness and everything amazing. Thank you for reminding me of this recipe and sharing with the ladies!

  4. For me it is a beverage… it just varies as to season and time of day. It can be good, dark coffee with sweet cream! OR decaf black tea with french vanilla soy creamer! OR a nice glass of wine! I can sip and enjoy a beverage that I can’t with food. But I’m working on enjoying the food without the guilt and stress!

    • Tricia! I LOVE drinks too! :) There is something about having a cup of comforting something in-hand. In winter I find tea and sometimes coffee and all year round I do love me some wine. Savor the hell out of those drinks and foods and see what happens to the quantity, guilt, and stress… keep me posted!! xo

  5. Hi Katie,
    I loved this post, so thoughtful and so many good points to consider. I’m so glad your message is out there.
    Creme Brule cracking is a favorite of mine too! The other is letting fresh sliced strawberries with a little maple syrup sit until super juicy and then add a little splash of coconut milk. Sometimes I add cacao nibs too.
    I can’t wait to Skinny Dip with you! Even though I feel good about my body and habits and self, I’d be crazy to pass up the chance to hang with you and get lifted up for 21 days!!
    Xoxoxoxo
    Robin

    • Ooo! The visual and taste bud experience of what you described with the strawberries just got me so giddy! I love syrupy (the natural kind) strawberries and have so many incredible memories associated with them. I’m SO excited for you to join in and sometime soon we shall dine on creme brulee and saucy strawberries together!!! xo

  6. Oh my! This post resonates so much for me right now. I have been on a very clean/restricted eating over the past FEW years related to healing candida. The process has been very good and many revelations have been to which I am grateful, but the Lord has revealed to me that restriction of food is easy to control, but the real healing that needs to happen is in my heart which is a little more uncomfortable and challenging. But, I am so ready for the journey now! Your 21 day challenge was brought to my awareness as I was giving my heart to this truth (God is awesome! I never even knew you existed before!) The challenge has been fun and enjoyable and thought provoking. Thanks so much for offering it as a free resource!

    • Sara! Yes!!! I too dealt with candida and the protocol and right food path helped… but it was when I healed my heart that I stopped having any symptoms or issues – funny how that is :) SO excited you’ve been able to join in on the challenge and hang in there. Beauty is unfolding for you!

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