VALUE BASED EATING

VALUE BASED EATING

Can’t seem to stay “on track” with your healthy eating? Lets talk about your values.

Its an all too common problem. We want to feel fit and strong and healthy and so on a Monday (it’s usually a Monday) we resolve to eat healthy food all week, maybe get to the gym a few times or make it to the pilates classes we love so much and definitely drink a little less. We have good intentions and we are motivated, oh, how motivated we are. Then Wednesday morning rolls around and it’s Mikes birthday so there is cake in the lunch room, or your toddler has only half eaten their muffin and so you say “to hell with it” and you have the cake or half eaten muffin. One little bit of cake or toast isn’t such a big deal. You’ll get right back to your healthy eating. Then at lunch you’ve got a taste for sugar and  decide you’ll just grab some fast food and so begins the spiral into reactive eating all week. What is reactive eating? It’s a combination I see often in clinic and it goes a little something like this

1. Being unclear on your values
2. Not being organized/prioritizing
3. Rationalising

What are values? The dictionary defines values as “principles or standards of behaviour; one’s judgement of what is important in life.” We all have values in regards to every facet of our life that we deem important. Sometimes we are acutely aware of our values and sometimes we are not. The decisions that we make about what to eat, our work, our families etc are either in alignment with our values or they are not. The less aligned with our values our choices are, the more conflicted and unhappy we are likely to feel. For example, if you hold the value of spending quality time with your family, but you work 60hr weeks, you are likely to feel some level of discomfort around that. Likewise if you value your health and eating a nutritious diet, but you eat highly processed food each day and drink alcohol often, you will feel the discontent of making choices that are not in alignment with your values aka, guilt, frustration or maybe even exasperation. On the flip side, maybe you value a calm relationship with food after a history of disordered eating, but count calories obsessively. The disparity between your values and your choices will leave you feeling pretty average at best.

Being clear on our values around health, eating and exercise allows us to make empowered, value based decisions about how we move our body, eat and drink. It moves the onus from

“I know I really should reduce my sugar intake (guilt) but I just want to eat this chocolate bar now because I deserve it for eating so well lately and I’m really starving and I’ve had a long day at work (rationalizing)”

to

“I really enjoy the taste of chocolate but I choose to eat a piece of fruit instead because I eat food that nourishes and sustains me (value). The chocolate will always be there but today I choose an apple”

Take some time to get clear on your health values and you will be well on your way to consistently eating a nutritious diet and making healthful choices about the way you treat your body.

Want some help with this? I’d love to work with you.

With gratutitude,

Emma Lynas
Nutritionist
Cert 3 & 4 Fitness and Personal Training
Reiki Level 2