This post is part of Wellness Wednesday Link-Up at Nourishing Treasures.
I have written a more in-depth series of articles on weight loss beginning here, but for the moment I want to get some of these thoughts out there and get you pondering about this topic. Weight loss is a topic familiar to nearly everyone. With an estimate as high as 70% of America falling into the overweight category, the diet industry has been booming and everyone seems to have a weight loss system that promises to melt pounds and inches while you sleep. The truth is conventional diets don’t work. You need to change your lifestyle permanently to incorporate the healthy eating habits that will result in not only weight loss but health gain.
Years of misinformation from well-meaning sources like the Food Pyramid have led us to believe that we are only able to lose weight if we stop eating fat. While it is true that gram for gram fats have more calories than carbohydrates, eating healthy natural fats actually helps you lose weight for many reasons, including the fact that they satisfy your hunger four or five times better than carbohydrates allowing you to feel full and content, not wanting more.
Cutting out processed carbohydrates such as chips, pretzels, M&Ms, candy, soft drinks, white bread and packaged cookies is a good place to start. These kinds of carbohydrates have nothing to offer nutrition-wise, and actually drain your body of precious nutrient reserves just to get them digested. Replace the empty carbs with vibrantly colored vegetables and fruits that are full of anti-oxident polyphenols, vitamins and minerals. Consume this rainbow of healthy carbohydrates with plenty of butter from grassfed cows, unrefined coconut oil, lard from pasture-raised pigs, fresh avocados, fresh eggs, clean raw milk and raw cheese. These are foods that nourish us and give our bodies energy to carry on vital processes. Along with the colorful carbohydrates and healthy fats you must eat sufficient protein to support your body’s needed repairs, fuel your adrenals and immune system, build muscle and many other projects. Meats from pasture-raised animals, wild caught fish and game have a place in a healthy lifestyle giving you the amino acids you need for good mental and physical health.
One question I hear all the time is, “How can I possibly eat all of that fat without gaining weight?” What they are not understanding is that all calories are not created equal. When you feed your body enough calories made from the right kinds of nutrients then, over time, you will find your metabolism picks up, you begin to have more energy, you aren’t sick all the time, and you will slowly lose the excess stored fat until you get to the balance point where your body should be in order to be healthy. It does not happen at once, it does not happen quickly, but it does happen. The end result is a healthier body. The lost weight is just a bonus.
You can read a 7-part series looking in-depth at issues surrounding weight loss and true health beginning with this article.