In Melbourne, it’s clear there’s a whole healthy living thing going on and there are plenty of cafés, supermarkets and delis catering to the current health trends like paleo, fructose-free, dairy-free and gluten-free. I went to a beautiful little café last week and found myself a bit confused about all the different options. In the end I went for a big salad and some gluten-free pumpkin bread but it took me a while to work out what was the best option for me.
As I explain on my bio page, I can’t eat cow’s milk or gluten as it brings me out in spots. I accidentally had something yesterday that triggered an allergic reaction and my skin is sore and aggravated today. It’s tricky sometimes to navigate menus but in an odd way I’m also grateful that my body, especially my skin, gives me clear and instant feedback if there’s something it doesn’t like.
When we’re showered with messages about new ways of eating that promise quick results, new diet and healthy-living books hitting the shelves every month, celebs touting ‘their’ tried and tested way to stay healthy, it’s no wonder we get confused.
Here’s the advice I give to clients and to myself.
Don’t worry about dietary definitions
- Just because something is gluten-free (or dairy or fructose or refined sugar-free...) doesn’t mean it’s healthier. A lot of gluten-free products are full of crappy processed ingredients, including sugar, cheap oils and artificial stuff. Plus too many carbs are still too many carbs, regardless of whether they’re gluten-free or not.
- One size does not fit all. For example some people thrive on the paleo way of eating meat, fish, vegetables, some fruit (no grains, dairy or processed food). Others do better having more wholegrains in their diet. We’re all unique and the key is finding what works for each of us, not following the latest food fad.
Listen to your gut
- Tune into the signals your body is giving you. Do you get indigestion after eating something? Or wind, bloating or an upset stomach? Is there something that makes you feel sluggish or headachy? Or makes you feel over-heated or racy? Like with my skin, I know that any cow’s milk is a total no-no for me.
Tune into these messages, they’re dietary gold dust. Your body’s giving you free and immediate advice about what’s best for you.
Just Eat Real Food
- Focus on simple, real food that looks how it started out in life. Fish not fishfingers, steak not sausages, potatoes not chips, a whole apple not just the juice.
- Think food your grandparents would eat. Go for meat, fish, eggs, lots of veggies, a little fruit, a few wholegrains. Maybe some nuts here and there. The odd treat. Not much alcohol. Very little processed or ‘packet’ food. Nothing too fancy or complicated.
Do this and you’ll be well on your way to Glorious Wellness. Don’t worry about what your ‘way’ of eating is called. It doesn’t need a label. Other than perhaps this description:
‘I have this way of eating where I avoid crappy processed food and just eat real food. I feel gloriously well’
Keep it real. Keep it colourful.
Until next time,
Be glorious. Stay well.