Nowadays, I’ve been undergoing this mentality whenever I eat. This, “why not enjoy food?” mentality which leads me to eating whatever I want and as much as I want. I’d like to name this the Foodie Dilemma. It’s this desire which justifies to me that, “Hey! God made food to enjoy, right? So why not enjoy as much as possible?”
However, the problem with me “enjoying” food and being a self-proclaimed foodie, is that I have used the cover of enjoyment to warp my notions which are in actuality-indulgence. Let me get something straight. I am absolutely all for enjoying food, but lately I have been confusing enjoyment and appreciation of food with indulgence.
I’ve had this epiphany a few nights ago as I was eating a microwave pizza while sipping my Coca-Cola while munching on some potato chips at 11pm. And in the forefront of my mind was just “YOLO!!!!” If this was just a rare indulgence, I might has let it slip out of my mind. But my reality is that YOLO-ing food has become a new and awful habit for me, as shown through my now frequent late-night “fourth meal.”
The awful truth is that using “enjoyment” or YOLO as your excuse to eat anything you want isn’t healthy-physically or mentally. Using the foodie dilemma as your justification to eat and indulge all the time can halt you in your weight loss goals or even just maintaining a healthy life style. I’ve touched on this before, but I mentioned in some earlier posts how I have been struggling to lose weight even with more than enough exercise. The reason for that I have finally begun to realize is food. You will never reach your fitness goals unless you practice healthy eating habits.
However, I don’t think that being healthy means cutting out all of your favorite foods. You can still enjoy them as long as its in moderation. It’s all about self-control overcoming indulgence. So often we, or at least I, think I’ll be happier if I eat whatever I want. But the after effects of a bloated belly, lagging energy, break-outs, and excessive guilt that comes afterwards just isn’t worth it.
You won’t be able to change your habits over night. I feel as though I’ve instilled this YOLO mentality when it comes to food for the past month so it’ll be a challenge to reverse the effect. However, it really is worth it. I remember when I used to be in tip top shape and the amount of energy and exuberance I felt after a run, achieved through clean eating. It really is a better feeling than indulgence. The problem with indulgence when it comes to food is that it is so short lived. It only feels good while you are eating ice cream at midnight, which is immediately followed by regret and the obligatory workout. But being healthy makes you feel good throughout every facet of your life; mentally, emotionally, and physically.
To truly feel healthy one has to get rid of this foodie indulgence. Again, I’m not saying stop eating food you enjoy. Just make sure that this enjoyment isn’t a cover for habitual indulgence like myself. I think the perfect way to describe a healthy balance is having a cheat day. Basically you eat clean and exercise for six days of the week, and on the seventh day (Saturday is best since you are more likely to eat out) you get to enjoy the foods you love that may not be the healthiest. We have to feed our soul as well! So a piece of chocolate, or a soda, or some cake one day out of the week will not ruin all the work you put in beforehand. Plus, a cheat day can ironically add some motivation to your healthy living days.
Basically, all I have to say about this foodie dilemma is that it’s not beneficial to make indulgence and excuses conquer your decisions when it comes to food. If you want to be healthy you have to eat healthy most of the time. If you want to lose weight, eating healthy needs to be your mentality, not YOLO. It takes time to train your mind, but once you center it around real enjoyment of healthy food and moderation of unhealthy foods, you’ll be well on your way to living a healthy lifestyle again.