Confused about what to eat to feel better?
With so much information freely available on the internet, it is easy to become muddled about the best way to eat to support your health. This is particularly so if you are suffering with some form of chronic pain. In these circumstances, you will desperately be seeking solutions, to get your life back on track. If you are in pain and feeling confused about what to eat to feel better, then read on. This blog post cuts through the fads and the super-food fantasies. Instead, it gives you some basics to work on that are manageable and backed by science. No hype, just simple food strategies to build some strong foundations for good health.
If you add in the voices of well-meaning family, friends, colleagues and neighbours on top of your confusion, the cacophony of noise can become unbearable. Whilst you started off your search for information with the intention of getting some control over your food choices, you may end up despairing. The sense of overwhelm overtakes you and you end up doing nothing – or feeling so stressed that you reach more and more for foods that bring comfort.
When it comes to nutrition, it needs to be personal to you. Everyone starts from a different place, with their own unique history, presents with their own set of symptoms and has different circumstances within which they experience them. Even information on the internet that is factual may not be appropriate for you, or for you at this particular point in time. If you are mapping one set of dietary exclusions on top of another, you’ll be left feeling as though only lettuce is allowed to grace your table. But chances are, you’ll be able to eat much more than that – and feel better with it.
It is also important, in some circumstances, to sequence different nutrition and lifestyle interventions appropriately. There are certain approaches that work well, but some other steps may be required before trying them. Without the prep work, they may have no impact – or perhaps even make things worse.
Nutritional Therapists practice personalised nutrition and lifestyle medicine. The subtleties required for the what, when and for how long is worked out with each client. There are no ‘standard protocols’, each one gets their own bespoke programme. If you are confused about what to eat to feel better, try some of the foundation steps below.
Confused about what to eat to feel better? Here are some foundations you can safely start today.
Take a look at this plate. What often strikes people is how vibrant and colourful it is. One of the most important things is to change the proportions on your plate. If you know that certain foods affect you, then avoid them, but don’t let that restrict your intake further. Go crazy with the vegetables, eating more than you have ever done in one sitting and you’ll be doing yourself a favour. If you suffer with digestive problems, you may want to work up your intake in a measured way, so you don’t overwhelm your system.
Eat Super Foods – all of them!
There have been many foods hitting the headlines as super foods over the years. My advice is – YES, EAT THEM. But eat all of them: blueberries, red cabbages, turmeric, broccoli, kale, Brussel sprouts, apples, raspberries, figs, cauliflower, sweet potato, tomatoes. I could go on. This infographic gives loads of inspiration. Get colourful and varied.
Avoid Extreme Diets
Avoid extreme diets. Programmes that have you drinking your meals using a powdered supplement may have some quick effects but is unlikely to be sustainable in the longer term. It also takes away the pleasure of planning, preparing, chewing, tasting and sharing real food. Food should bring pleasure. You may need to be open to retraining your palette somewhat if you have got into a food rut, but you can do this. Just be patient, get some help, keep an open mind and try things more than once, that have been prepared in different ways. I share recipes in a monthly newsletter (soon to be weekly, watch this space!) that you can use to stretch your palette. Some Christmas recipes coming up soon so sign up quick.
Help! What should I eat today?
With some of my clients, I suggest they have a ‘retreat zone’. A selection of meals that you know you like, are easily prepared and for which you are likely to have the ingredients to hand or easily available in a local shop. I have a useful crib sheet called ‘Help! What should I Eat Today?’ which I will be making available through my website soon. Watch out for that.
If you are confused about what to eat to feel better, this blog gives you some tips to get you started with some nutrition foundations. If you would like to discuss your own situation with chronic pain, and how nutrition and lifestyle changes may be able to help, you can book a free call with me. It is worth investing in your health so you can get your life back on track. Call me to find out more.