Sunday, September 16, 2012

Healthy Eating Vs. Dieting

Diet... This word epitomizes several definitions. When we hear this word, most of us want to run for the hills. It's like a forbidden four letter word. It has a simple definition really. The word Diet simply put, sums up our daily food and beverage intake. As in, everything you eat and drink is your diet.

But in our western society, most of the time, when the word diet is used, it is in regards to the multi-billion dollar weight loss industry made up of weight loss books, diet pills, the newest shake that will help you lose 10 lbs. in a week, the "don't eat this," "don't eat that, " mumbo jumbo along with the countless other examples that we can come up with.

I am going to be completely honest. I hate the word Diet. I cringe any time some one uses it. I can't even begin to tell you how many times I have had people ask me what diet I'm on or that they need to go on my diet. My definition of the word diet in conjunction to weight loss is simply: failure. I have yet to meet anyone who has been on a restrictive "diet" and actually maintained their weight loss once the have gone off their diet. (If any one would like to correct me, by all means.)


I don't want to sound redundant, as I have explained several times in other blog posts what it is I'm doing to lose weight and stay healthy. But I would like to offer a few differences between Healthy Eating and Dieting.

Fad Dieting is at it's lowest rate ever in decades. Diet books and pills abound, yet our obesity % is at it's highest. Do you know 2/3 of Americans are overweight?! Fad Dieting focuses on what you can't have, such as fat, carbs, sugar or whatever type of diet you are on. When in reality your body needs a balance of good fats, good carbs and good, natural sugar, such as the sugar found in fruit.Your body cannot last on a no carb diet. I have seen the effects of the Atkins diet first hand. Not only are you packing your arteries with fat and cholesterol, your hair can begin to fall out, your nails become brittle and weak, not to mention the condition of your skin which can age you easily by 10 years. This is a perfect example of why "dieting" is not a solution for long term health and weight loss. When you begin to incorporate the item that your were restricting back into your diet, in this case carbs, with out healthy eating, you will gain your weight back and then some. This is due to your bodies automatic response to store fat for the next time your restrict your body of something it needs. 

I truely believe people are slowly realizing that real food (less processed) is the way to true health and eventually weight management.When I use the word "processed" in conjunction to food, I am referring to anything that has an additive to preserve freshness, to improve taste or to add artificial coloring.When I say real food, I'm talking about the foods that were eaten 100 years ago, before High Fructose Corn Syrup, Maltodextrin and MSG's came into the picture. Examples of these foods are Fruits, Vegetables, Whole Grains and Lean Meats. 

Our body needs essential nutrients that we can only get from these foods. Nutrients that give us energy, strengthen bones, build muscle, give us mental focus, help build our immune system and fight off disease and the list can go on and on. Our bodies cannot create these nutrients nor can the best "multi-vitamin" supply these nutrients to the extent that it needs. When you add vegetables, fruit, whole grains and lean proteins to your diet, the fuller you stay and the less room you have for empty calories.

Healthy eating is a comprehensive plan that improves your quality of healthy by improving your quality of food. My desire is to educate people to understand how their body is created to digest foods and to teach the impact of food on your body. I choose to the best of my ability not to eat processed foods because they are inferior to real food. 


The more un-processed your food is, the longer it takes for your body to break it down and digest it, thus keeping you fuller longer.

Here are 5 Points of Healthy Eating:

1) Balanced Nutrition: Healthy Eating provides the nutrients your body needs to perform at it's best.
2) Long Term Results: Whether it's Lower Cholesterol or High Blood Pressure, healthy eating proportionally is the best way of managing all health related issues.
3) Concentrates on the Means instead of the End: Focuses on what you can eat instead of what you can't. Balanced eating is the way to go.
4) Ultimate Healthy approach to Weight Loss: When your body is supplied with the right foods, weight loss will always be one of the ending results.
5) Does not cost any extra money and there are no gimmicks: To vouch for this, I can honestly says, my grocery bill has gone down since I began to prepare my own foods.   

I know this is a long post, as most of them are. But I hope this helps clear any misconceptions between healthy eating and dieting. 

For more information, please leave comments below or contact me @ amanda@heathlyhappygirl.com.









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