Monday, July 23, 2012

Are you a habitual eater? And why it matters...

I eat the same thing everyday. This is me admitting I have a problem....Or at least I used to. I literally used to eat pretty much the same thing every single day by choice. I liked my food, it was easy to prepare and traveled well. If was still hungry after eating I would eat more of the same things; broccoli, bell peppers, spinach, tuna, eggs, chicken, apples, raspberries, lettuce, carrots, almonds, whey protein powder, olive oil and white vinegar (occasionally garlic and onion). That's it, if it wasn't on that list I didn't eat, not because I didn't want to or planned to avoid everything else, I just never thought about it. I had friends on similar diets and they would have cheat meals or cheat days when they'd eat out, but due to my schedule and lack of spontaneity I rarely if ever ate out and if I did I still ate the same thing (I sound like the most boring person right now, but I also have a sensitive stomach so I don't like to try new things while eating out).

Anyway, none of this was problem until I starting feeling bad. Among various symptoms the most obvious were exhaustion, weight gain, soreness everywhere and a reoccurring flu. Being a personal training and group exercise instructor I brushed the soreness off as part of the job and the tired was a no-brainer... I was working split shifts, getting up at 4:30am and going to bed at 10pm for days on end while exercising 4-6hrs a day. The other stuff I just assumed came with the physical stress of sleep deprivation and over training. To combat my exhaustion  I changed my work schedule, I got more sleep and went to the doctors. They sent me for blood work and to my and their surprise I had several imbalances. My Thyroid function was low; which maybe attributed to eating to many cruciferous vegetables, learn more here. My red blood cell count was low which may indicate Anemia caused by low Iron. Anemia may explain the fatigue and muscle soreness and could be caused by not enough  Iron consumption or too much Phytic Acid blocking absorption of Iron. Of course my Doctor's did not mention how food plays role in our overall health, but once I saw my blood work and starting doing more research I quickly let my doctor know that I would be changing my diet and would like to be retested in a couple months to see if my numbers improve before I take any prescriptions.

The bottom line is don't eat the exact same thing every day, even if you stick the same diet most of the time make sure you enjoy a "cheat meal" or "cheat day" every now and then, your body may thank you for it! I'm now trying this thing called "eating what sounds good," I'm trying to listen to my body needs as I instruct my clients to do. I've never eaten like this, I normally find a couple foods I really like and eat them everyday until I find a couple more things I like more. Along with my new diet adventure I starting taking a handful of vitamins made by Advocare, which I'm finding very beneficial.

I'm sharing my story is reinforce our bodies need for nutrients from a variety of whole foods, not just a handful of items and to draw attention to your children's diets too. Are they getting a variety of carbohydrate, protein, and fat sources? Click here for ideas on how to incorporate veggies in to your kids diet.

Happy Healthy Eating!!

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