When I was younger, I would hear people say they were going on a diet. I always believed that going on a diet meant you were trying to lose weight. Fortunately, I never experienced a weight problem (other than trying to keep weight on), so I never concerned myself with that.
As I’ve been on my health journey over the past 8+ years, I’ve come to learn that the term “diet” means so much more! Needless to say, I didn’t realize it at the time, but I actually was on a diet – the Standard American Diet – and just as its initials spell out, it was SAD. I regularly ate processed junk food and rarely ate fresh fruits and vegetables. However, growing up we had a garden, so I was at least able to enjoy fresh vegetables during those seasons. My mom did a good job keeping us fed with great meals each day, but I grew up during the 80’s and processed ingredients were used to make those casseroles, jello salads and desserts. My mom worked outside of the house when I was growing up, so every once in a while, meal convenience won out. I remember her asking me, “do you want real or boxed mashed potatoes?” Many times, I would say “I want the fake ones”! Wow, times have changed!
So Many Diets From Which to Choose!
There are so many diets out there! Diets for weight loss, heart health, athletic endurance and more. Then you have the different types of diets, such as Paleo, Blood Type, Autoimmune, Elimination, Adkins, Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, South Beach, Gluten Free, The Maker’s Diet, Low Carb, High Protein, Detox, Mediterranean, Weston A Price, Leaky Gut, GAPs, Vegetarian – why not go all out – Vegan, and the list can go on.
While on my health journey, I came to realize that food wasn’t just something that I needed for sustenance.
[tweetthis]What you eat either brings health, or harm to your body.[/tweetthis]
That realization alone made a huge impact! During that time, I also realized that “diets” weren’t just something you went on to lose weight.
Different Diets for Different Periods in My Life
I began trying different diet’s that doctors recommended to me for my health’s sake. There have been different times in my life that a certain diet has worked better. During this time, I also recognized that I had food allergies which I never thought I had. After going on a detox diet, I found out that I had some foods which were causing negative symptoms. Then I went on an elimination diet to figure out which foods were negatively impacting my health. I’ve been on a gluten free diet for the past few years as I realized I was allergic to wheat, then I realized I was sensitive to gluten. I’ve been on a leaky gut diet to help repair my gut. I’ve incorporated an autoimmune diet since I have autoimmune disease. I went on a cellular healing diet during some of my most treacherous health periods. Through all of these different diets, I’ve come to learn what works for my body and what doesn’t. Currently, my diet is a mixture of different diets that make me feel better.
I didn’t realize that I was harming my body for so long by eating the wrong foods. Today, I listen to my body and watch for adverse symptoms after I eat something. Those symptoms may even show up days later. You see, I used to experience symptoms such as headaches or bloating, but didn’t realize they were related to what I was eating. I had even experienced one symptom on my skin since childhood that recently went away after all these years. I had accepted the symptoms as normal. I didn’t used to know that those outward symptoms were really caused by inward problems.
So Which Healthy Diet is the Best?
What diet would I recommend? I’m not a nutritionist nor dietitian, so I try to be careful with what I recommend. I took a nutrition class in college, attend many online health summits and read information from many different doctors, but that’s the extent of my formal training. With all of the different health challenges that I have gone through, I can really only go off of my personal experience. Personally, I believe every body is different. What works for you may not work for me. However, there are certain things I believe everyone should follow no matter what diet they are on. You can read my food philosophy here, but the main points I believe are that everyone should be eating lots of fresh, organic vegetables and limit processed foods. Stick to real, whole foods that are preferably organic and stay away from added sugars. There are also foods I believe should definitely not be included in ones diet due to the fact of how they are processed today. Items such as wheat, soy, GMOs, and milk.
I have learned from many different diets, so I guess you would say I’m on a “Teresa” diet. I hope that you will take the time to listen to your body and consult a nutritionist who can help you craft a diet that is perfect for you. You wouldn’t believe the difference the right foods for your body type can make!
Read Next: What’s Your Food Philosophy?
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