Wellness, in the area of nutrition, can seem to be terribly rigid. It’s all healthy stuff … or nothing, and you’re doomed to the fires of unwell hell. All veggies all the time, not one darn piece of chocolate in sight … or be sick.
No can do, right? Me, too! Tell me I’m never, ever going to enjoy a really amazing, decadent piece of chocolate cake again, and, yeah, I might well give up on wellness, too.
Moderation keeps me in balance. Better yet, moderation has improved my tastebuds over time so that really healthy stuff is now on my list of faves. In the past, a candy bar – pretty much any candy bar – oh, yeah! Now, yuk. Give me some top quality dark chocolate instead. Before, fried fish. Now, grilled, fresh, perfectly seasoned fish. You get the picture.
That’s why I think moderation works the bulk of the time. You can, indeed, have your cake (within reason!) and your icing (wellness), too. That is do-able.
Of course, fine tune this for you. Maybe you need some beginning – or forever – rules. (But please keep them limited; life is to be loved.) Such as – healthy fare every day but one when you go out on the town or to a special event. No sugar most days, but a great dessert once on the weekend. Etc.
But, if completely, utterly avoiding something like sugar is your approach, there’s nothing wrong with that either. If it works for you, please, do it! I completely, utterly skipped all types of sugar for six months while I healed holistically from Lyme Disease. I was damn determined to be completely well again so, once I realized that sugar was competing with that effort, deleting it from my menu felt pretty effortless. Plus the fact that if I ate sugar, there was an almost immediate effect of feeling completely awful. Makes it really easy to say, “No, thanks!” when you know that dessert is going to result in you feeling like utter crap for hours.
Not that sugar is good for you. If you can completely skip it, awesome! But if a little bit keeps you on track for a lifetime, that’s a much better choice than giving up altogether, and digging into sugar for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks (the typical American diet where there’s so much obvious sugar but even more hidden in foods your wouldn’t think of as sweet).
Your body is unique. Your approach should be, too. If you’re well or reasonably so, play with this. What can you move away from? What can you indulge less frequently in without feeling utterly deprived and throwing in the towel? What can be your easy rule that helps you balance what you eat?
At minimum, please stop worrying about every last morsel of “bad” stuff that enters your mouth. That’s worse for your health than a bit of indulgence.