Skip to main content

Are You Doing This for Looks?


Most of the information I see related to diet and fitness has a major focus on  physical appearance changes... "30 days to abs," "10 day shred," "lose 7 pounds in 7 days," and so on. And it makes sense... that is what catches people's eyes and is "sexy" in the media and marketing world. 

But THERE IS SO MUCH MORE TO IT THAN THAT! 

Often times we feel tired, foggy, achy, or just have an overall "heavy" feeling. We may even feel anxious or depressed. It has largely been accepted in mainstream society that all of these feelings are  normal or just part of what comes along with the daily grind. 

While your feelings may partially have to do with life in general (i.e. a stressful job, home life, medical history), the food you eat and the amount of exercise you perform can play a HUGE role in emotions and energy level. 

Harvard University Health Blogger Eva Selhub discusses one connection between food and the brain*, stating that about 95 % of serotonin is produced in the gastrointestinal tract (your gut, yo.) 

What is serotonin, you ask? Oh, just a little floaty neurotransmitter in your body that is partially responsible for keeping certain things in check like sleep, mood, appetite... 

Additionally, serotonin plays a large part in allowing our digestive system to function properly, assisting in muscle contraction during digestion, as well as pain, nausea, and vomiting signals. 

Quick side note: serotonin can't cross the blood-brain barrier all by itself to help our mood- it needs it's BFF tryptophan to help it do that. 

So, what can we do to give our bodies serotonin? Eat! -fruits and nuts such as pineapple, walnuts, banana, and kiwi just to name a few. 

What about tryptophan? Eat! Carbs, bananas, nuts, and beans! 

Oh, and guess what else? Exercise has been found to increase serotonin levels too. Surprise! (Can you hear my sarcasm?)**

SO. Here's a big problem in the dieting and exercise world. If you're starving yourself of carbs because you think the only way to achieve your desired look is to go low-carb, you're messing with your own head. Literally. 

There's so much more to this topic to dive into, but I'm not writing a thesis on it. Long story short ... If you're eating or following a certain diet plan just for looks and don't care if you're being "healthy," or if you aren't eating healthy and exercising at all, you're really selling yourself short. A healthy lifestyle is worth so much more than looking good... It can really rebuild you from the inside out. Trust the process and give yourself the chance to feel better than "just getting by." 

-The Wonder Vegan (Anna Maree Hagley)


RESOURCES: 
*http://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/nutritional-psychiatry-your-brain-on-food-201511168626

**http://nutritionwonderland.com/2009/06/understanding-bodies-serotonin-connection-between-food-and-mood/u


Comments

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

5 Ways to Get to Your Early Morning Workout

Sometimes, the hardest part of getting your workout in is just getting started or getting to the gym! Here are 5 tips that may make it easier to get going.  1. Sleep in Your Gym Clothes.  When we're tired, the more steps it takes to do something, the less we may want to do it. If you wake up already dressed for the gym, that's one less thing you have to do before heading out the door.  2. Set your Coffee Pot On a Timer. When it comes to early mornings, it's not that we hate the morning itself, it's the being tired that we despise! If you drink coffee, have your coffee pot timed to start a few minutes before you wake up. If you  have another favorite caffeinated drink, prep it the night before or set a cup/bottle of it next to your bed.  3.  Make an Appointment to Meet Someone There.  This should be someone you wouldn't want to disappoint (best friend, trainer, etc). Even if we aren't in the mood to show up for ourselves, we can be much more likely to show up if

Looking For Accountability?

The 3dots - Fitness App!  How many times have you set a goal for yourself only to find that within a few days or weeks you've all of a sudden found yourself faltering? Sometimes the hardest part of reaching your fitness and health goals is just finding a way to keep yourself accountable. When we are held accountable, our goals stay in the front of our minds instead of getting buried by other thoughts, responsibilities, and stresses.  I've learned this the hard way by trial and error, trying different goals, methods to reach them, and varying levels of intensity. But- I've always been most successful when I have someone or something to interact with, give me new ideas, and keep me on track.  This is why everyone who wants extra motivation, accountability, and fun loves the 3dots - Fitness app!  So how does the app work? There are challenges to choose from each day related to healthy food, exercise, and mindset. Once you choose a challenge, you have 24 hours to complete it. 

Self- Fulfilling Prophecies

Self-Fulfilling Prophecy: positive or negative expectations about a situation, event, or person, in which your expectations may affect you or someone else's behavior in a way that causes the expectations to occur. Example: expecting a person to be unkind based on how they look, you may (consciously or unconsciously) treat them in a way that causes them to act unkind. Example: a person begins college, all the while telling themselves they aren't "smart enough/ good enough/ meant to" finish college. They may be more likely to drop out of college than those who believe in themselves.   Sometimes the things we tell ourselves can be so powerful that we really think they're a non negotiable truth. Our thoughts are so powerful that way. We believe there's no way around things so we don't even try.... We believe we aren't capable of something so we don't even try to  ch allenge it, or we challenge it / try, all the while telling ourselves we