Think of each meal this way. The food you eat literally becomes your tissues, creating your skin, hair, muscles, fat, hormones, heart, bones, senses of smell taste and touch, and emotions. (The latter being just as much you as your eyeballs by the way).
Eating healthy therefore isn’t about denial. It’s about giving a present to your body from nature every single time you chew.
Eliminate the toxic foods, because you don’t want a toxic corroding body.
Instead choose foods that are delicious and beautiful, and note that beautiful foods (like these tomatoes) are usually the ones that are the least processed and come most directly from nature. They are therefore packed with nutrition.
These are the foods that your body has the easiest time digesting and that create the least toxic waste for your system to clear out.
Health is a present you give to yourself. It’s not that hard. You don’t need to be an expert in nutrition. Go to the grocery store and look around. These baby tomatoes with olive oil and crumbled feta are fast simple and one of the nicest gifts my boyfriend has ever given to me.
I’m studying a Ayurveda right now pretty intensively. Ayurveda is the traditional medicine of India. It emphasizes knowing your individual constitution – the unique tendencies you are born with, from how your immune system functions, to the foods you crave and why, to the way you metabolize food.
Because of this there are few blanket statements in Ayurveda, and this is why I love this medicine. Unlike in western medicine where we prize treating everyone in a standardized way, in Ayurveda, what is good for my constitution is not necessarily good for yours, and we should all tailor what we eat and how we live based on our individuality.
That said, one weight loss tip from Ayurveda that is a strategy worth trying for anyone who needs to lose weight is this. Avoid cold drinks and foods. Because when cold matter hits your digestive system it dulls and constricts the metabolic fire you need to assimilate food, and the cold shock tells the body to add more fat as insulation, in preparation for next time! You should even avoid too cold A/C!
Rather than drinking cold water, try warm or hot water with a teaspoon of raw honey, a squeezed wedge of lemon and a dash of black pepper. This will keep you full and warm and tell your body it’s ok to shed pounds.
This does NOT meant drink ten bottles of honey-lemon-pepper water a day. In Ayurveda, too much of something is as bad as too little, and balance is the key to health. Just 2 or 3 cups to curb hunger, warm you up, and keep your metabolism running.
This is the reality. If your waist is wider than your shoulders, or creeping close, then you are in huge, huge trouble. The fat in your middle is a festering inflammatory stew spitting out cancer juice and artery-hardening, pancreas-killing, Alzheimer’s inducing, ragefull sludge.
You do not have to starve yourself. You do not have to be skinny. And I know, in some cases the genetic odds are stacked against you. But I don’t care. If you can do anything about it, get your waist circumference down and save yourself.
In the early days your pancreas may just protest a little and your low back and knees might only whine quietly, but to themselves they are saying, “I’ll show you sucker.” In time the diabetic foot infections, wheelchair-confining back and knee pain, and stroke inducing cardiovascular disease will have their way with you.
Note, the lack of a numerical inch limit for males/females here is deliberate. We are all individuals. You know whether you are emaciated and starving, nourished but trim, or if your belly is toppling over your waistband a little more each year. I don’t expect you to measure yourself. I give you more credit than that. Observe and be honest.
I am a functional medicine doctor practicing in New York City. This means that I not only diagnose and treat disease, I look at the whole person, listen to my patients’ stories, and work to find the root cause of their symptoms.