Let’s face it. We’ve all made an excuse at some point or another where we avoided a healthy food choice in favour of something not-so-healthy. I’m sure I’m not the only one!
Although excuses seem totally reasonable (to us), all they really do is defend and justify our behaviour of not pursuing something. In this case, healthy eating. Excuses make our lives easier because they convince us that it’s OK to stay where we are. And they really do a great job of convincing us to stay the same, rather than making a change to expand and grow and make healthy choices.
So today I’m talking about the 3 most common excuses people make to avoid healthy eating and how to overcome them.
1) It’s time consuming
I think we’ve all been guilty at some point of saying that cooking healthy meals on a daily basis takes too much time. And yes, healthy eating DOES take a little bit of effort. But it doesn’t mean you have to spend 2 hours every evening cooking up a storm.
My solution to this excuse? Meal planning! Choose one or two days every week (Sundays is a popular one) to plan exactly what meals you’re going to eat that week.
With this in mind, you can now create a grocery shopping list with the ingredients you know you’ll need. Another great tip is to cook additional servings so that you can refrigerate/freeze them and then have cooked meals that are ready to grab and reheat. Your future self will thank you for that!
2) It’s boring/bland/restrictive
This is the furthest thing from the truth! So let’s cut to the chase and talk about my solution to this excuse. The first thing I tell people is to stop focusing on what you shouldn’t be eating, and instead focus on the HUGE diversity of nourishing whole foods that are out there.
With so many choices and so many combinations, there is no possible way that healthy eating is restrictive or boring. So my challenge to you is to try a new food (vegetable, fruit, grain, etc) or flavour combination every week. You’ll be surprised by all the new delicious foods you’ll discover and enjoy!
3) But I’m going to miss out on [insert guilty pleasure food here]
OK, we all have a little soft spot for something that isn’t exactly healthy for us. Whether it’s chocolate, wine, salty foods, or something in between, there’s a guilty pleasure for everyone. My solution? Well, there are two things to consider.
First, is that when your diet is filled with delicious wholesome, natural foods that are nourishing your body, you don’t even want to have the unhealthy stuff. When you understand how much goodness you’re giving your body with a healthy diet, you don’t feel like you’re missing out on anything. Because you’re not.
The second thing is that anything is OK in moderation. Yup, I said it! I don’t believe that a healthy lifestyle means that you have to miss out on a special occasion or celebration in the name of eating “clean”. BUT, if you are in the process of healing, then it’s definitely in your best interest to stick to a more restrictive diet until you are healed and symptom-free. So keep that in mind and choose accordingly. Obviously if a certain food makes you feel sick and horrible, you might want to avoid it to spare you the suffering.
However, if you have already gone through the main healing process, then I believe that balance is key to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. If you are consistently eating healthy, nourishing foods and taking care of your body, then enjoying a guilty pleasure food every once in a while is perfectly fine. So keep these points in mind the next time you feel like you’re denying yourself something “good” or feel like you’re missing out.
So as you can see, there really is no valid excuse to avoid making healthy food choices. Take the challenge today that you won’t make any more excuses and use these tips to help you move past them. Your health is worth it!
Now I want to hear from you: have you made any of these excuses? What other excuses have you told yourself in the past to avoid making a healthy food choice? How did you overcome them? Share below!