One size does NOT fit all

Healthy fruit

I love to read blogs from women who have found an eating style that works for them. More power to them I say. But what really irks me is when someone preaches diet nonsense as if it is the word of God and will be perfect for everyone on the planet.

Some diets say you can’t mix certain foods, others tell you what time you should be eating, some say eating fruit will make you fat, and God forbid you eat something sweet for breakfast or else you will most definitely crave sugar all day.  So what the heck are we supposed to do? It’s all so incredibly confusing and sometimes the advice is, in my opinion, completely wack.

As someone who loves to research new food trends and is always game to give something new a go, I have been caught up in some of these fads which claim to be the secret to optimum health. I tried I Quit Sugar and I quit quitting sugar a week later. Some might say I should have stuck with it longer but the reality is I quickly learned that I need more fruit in my life than what was on offer. I also hated the oily taste the breakfast left in my mouth, and my body was not feeling it at all. Actually I felt rubbish. It works for Sarah Wilson, which is fabulous, but it doesn’t work for me.

The reality is that a lot of the crap I have believed to be “the best way to eat” is actually a load of bullshit. So here are some of the things I have discovered:

  1. Eating after 7pm: It’s not the end of the world and it won’t make me fat. I work shift work and now eat dinner at 8pm. And guess what I am no larger than when I ate dinner at 5pm. I know shock horror!
  2. I don’t have to seriously limit my whole fruit intake because, holy crap it’s sooo full of sugar. Fresh fruit should not become a casualty in the sugar wars, in my opinion.  Dr Robert Lustig, a nutrition expert and a professor of paediatrics at the University of California, has labelled sugar “toxic” at high doses and has said fructose is the most “actionable” problem in our diet. Yet he is not writing fruit off completely. He told the New York Times: “As far as I’m concerned, fibre is the reason to eat fruit,” since it promotes the slow release of sugar and satiety. Plus, whole fruits are chock full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. In a piece in the Journal of the American Medical Association, Dr David Ludwig, the director of the New Balance Foundation Obesity Prevention Center at Boston Children’s Hospital,  cited studies which showed that increased fruit consumption is tied to lower body weight and a lower risk of obesity-associated diseases. So don’t fear it. But before you jump on the 80/10/10 bandwagon – where you are told to eat 10 bananas in one sitting-  you might want to think again– going overboard with anything is never smart.  Instead I eat fruit, especially berries, in moderation.
  3. Carbs are not the devil. I personally love carbs – hello oats for breakfast with berries and almond milk. I need carbs to survive and when paired with a balanced diet they will not make me fat.

The harsh reality is that what works for one woman may not work for you. It is fantastic to be inspired by what another woman does, and if her regime sounds like something that will work for you to give it a go. I am constantly scanning Instagram, magazines and blogs for inspiration. Just don’t expect exactly the same results.  I think it’s ludicrous to think that one style of eating can work for everyone under the sun, as we all have different requirements. For instance, health blogger Melissa Ambrosini found she was not flourishing on a vegan diet, losing her period and not feeling her best. Yet other women thrive on this kind of diet. So ladies listen to your own body. You might just be surprised by what you learn!

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