Health….its one of the, if not most important, component in your life. You would not believe how adapting a healthy diet/lifestyle will change you for the better. It’s more then just a new years resolution or something to write on your bucket list. Living a healthy lifestyle is a longer process then you think, it can’t just happen overnight…as much as I would love it too.
Even at a young age I was eating a healthier diet. My mom was always into organic remedies and healthy food. I rarely drank milk, because my mom didn’t think it was the healthiest for me, and we always ate an abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables. I could say I was blessed to have grown up in a home where I had a healthy plate of food in front of me everyday.
As I grew older I still ate primarily healthy. I lived with my mom for a few years and she was vegan at the time so you could imagine my diet was very well maintained and had an abundance of nutrients.
It wasn’t until I was 11 or 12 years old that I ate whatever I wanted,whenever I wanted. Of course you would expect that at that age, so it wasn’t much to worry about. It was around 14 that I started to gain a bit of weight, it wasn’t much and it wasn’t anything to really worry about, but you could tell I was unhealthy. Lets just say my mindset was crappy. I felt like I needed to eat ice cream every night and eat fast food multiple times a week. That point in my life, I didn’t know what I was consuming….I just didn’t care.
Now, that just sounds like every other teenager, but just because everyone does it doesn’t make it right. I was unhealthy, gaining weight, and wasn’t giving my body, that God blessed me with, the right attention.
At around 14 I knew I had to make a change. I was starting to become self conscious of my body and feeling bad about what I ate after EVERY single meal. At the beginning of 2014 I decided to completely change my lifestyle around and I started working out multiple times a week and paying more attention to what I ate. I lost a lot of weight in just a span of a couple months. I started making my own meals every night, eating more vegetables, staying away from fast food and junk food, and being more active.
I could not tell you how much better I felt about myself after that small change. It took a few months to get into the groove of things, but I was loving it! I ate things like lean meats, low fat greek yogurt, veggies and hummus, whole wheat breads, and protein bars. Ya know the usual “healthy” foods. I still felt like something was missing and I needed a change, thats when I decided to go vegan for just a month.
I tried it, and loved it. I felt like whatever I ate was healthy for me and I could get in all my nutrients in a day without tracking it or being too strict on myself. At the end of the month…. I stopped. My energy started to go down and I was losing weight fas. It was not healthy. I continued on my journey. I wasn’t on any specific diet. I just completely cut out all fast food, chips, soda, refined sugars (chocolate, candy bars, etc.) and ate LOTS of vegetables.
A little less then a year past and I still was self conscious about my body. I kept telling myself that my “diet” was working, but in reality I felt like it wasn’t. So I started to look into a specific diet, tracking your macros. Macros are also known as macro nutrients, they consist of carbohydrates, fat, and protein. This was the new “fad” diet and you calculated a certain amount of carbs, fat, and protein you had in a day. I tried it for a little bit, and it didn’t work for me. Restricting the amount of nutrients I got was torture. I wanted to be able to have freedom on what I could chose to eat.
The funny thing is, now that I think about it, what I thought was healthy for my body was just making me worse. An excessive amount of dairy, calorie restricting, and eating too much meat and oil was not in the spectrum I wish I was in.
I loved being healthier and active, but in the back of my head I knew I still wasn’t feeling my best. I wanted to be comfortable in my own skin and love who I am. I wanted to have more energy and feel more alive! 2015 was the year of self discovery, the year where I truly felt my best. July, 17,2015 was the day I decided to go vegan again. That month I went vegan a year ago would not be the same this time. I researched and researched on how to go vegan without losing so much energy. It was all about eating an ABUNDANCE of food! More carbs = more energy, am I right?!
I looked into a specific way of eating vegan which is high carb low fat. I made sure I stayed away from processed oils and vegan substitutes. I didn’t eat as much avocados and nut butters. I did this for about 6 months and started to gain a bit of weight. I was so frustrated, I have tried so many things and nothing is working!! Its not all about how you look or how much you weigh, but that was my mindset at the time. I needed to clear my mind and just let me body do its thing.
Where Am I Now?
Its currently October 4th, 2016. I believe I have now found my happy place. I feel good about myself, and I love the body I am in. I have a healthy mindset on what I eat and don’t pay attention to my weight at all. I don’t restrict myself from indulging every once in a while, and I don’t eat low fat or low carb. I eat whatever I want, whenever I want….sound familiar right? Filling my body with all plant-based foods has been the greatest feeling ever. Its been a long, tough journey, but being able to feel good about how you feel and what you eat really makes a difference. I have definitely had my ups and downs, and I still might have challenges. The experiences I have had, make up who I am. Without them I wouldn’t of been able to learn from them.
What you consume on a day to day basis does not just affect your outward appearance, but keeps your mind strong and clear, as Buddha said,”To keep the body in good health is a duty… otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear.” (Brainyquote.com).
“Health Quotes.” BrainyQuote. Xplore, n.d. Web. Accessed on October 4th, 2016 at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/topics/topic_health.html