I grew up on carbs, but my favorite treats ranged from Twinkies, Twix Bars, JujyFruits, boxes of cereal, “fat free” yogurt and milk, and well, the list could go on. As I got older and more into my running I started to become more conscious of the foods I was putting into my body. It began to paralyze me. I could go days with only eating cereal as I became completely fearful of gaining weight. I thought because cereal didn’t have “fat” in it that it was a “healthier” choice. I smile now when I look back on those years. They taught me a lot about what not to eat, but more importantly, more loving ways to think about food I was consuming, and how it was or wasn’t healing my body.
Now I know that fat doesn’t mean “gaining weight” it’s just a term to describe a particular food. We actually need nutritious fats in our body! Yeah, who knew? And even better, fat helps metabolize our food and sustains our energy throughout our day. It’s pretty important stuff (even after taking nutrition classes in college I still didn’t understand it’s importance on a practical level). Every wonder why you crash a few hours after your morning bowl of sugary cereal and cup of coffee? Those foods are not designed to sustain you though the morning (it’s mostly processed and loaded with sugar all designed to for short term addicting energy). Your body needs real food fuel. Your body and you deserve it.
I didn’t completely rule out carbs, I just began eating less of them and adding more fat into my diet. Carbs aren’t bad, we need carbs just like we need fat in our diet, but have you noticed that carbs are everywhere? This is the power of marketing. It’s easy to get sucked in. Ever see marketing for fresh fruits and vegetables or how about coconut oil? It’s interesting to think how different our world might be if we promoted self-healing foods. I was amazed within just a few days how I began to feel alive! Add in a few weeks and I felt on top of the world! I felt less anxious, depressed and I was able to focus throughout my day with ease and more peace. Now I can’t ever see myself going back to my old morning ways of short term energy and stress.
I call this my whole fat healing awakening. What exactly is “whole” fat? This is the fat you should be putting into your body! Plant based whole fats Include: avocados, full fat coconut milk, coconut oil, olive oil. You can try out my creamy avocado pudding in the morning, add olive oil to your salad in replace of dressing, and start adding coconut milk in your coffee. You will find that it’s actually a very delicious way to start off your morning.
It took me awhile to adjust to the “fat” mentality. I was so use to searching for fat free items at the store that it almost became second nature. I had to re-wire my mind to think in terms of what “healing food” was rather than relying on society to tell me what I should eat. I had to create a new morning ritual. Struggling with depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress requires balance and a commitment to address it with an open mind. Some days will be more emotional than others, but by giving your body and mind a morning ritual and feeding yourself healthy fat in the morning, the day may appear differently. Nuture yourself, feed yourself the good stuff. Eat more fat, please.