I remember walking into EQUIVITA one fine afternoon with a bag of Wendy's in my hand. A client of ours walked past me, looked at the bag of deliciousness and was visibly shocked that I was holding onto such a thing, and said to me, "Now that doesn't look like health food!" I smiled back at the client, and as I continued on my way I thought to myself, "What did he mean? What is 'health food', and why can't this be health food?" Of course, I knew what he meant. It was a bag of Wendy's, not a bag of kale chips, carrots and hummus or anything else that people associate with being a healthy option. But if Wendy's isn't healthy for me, does that mean that it's bad for me? Maybe...maybe not. Let's just say that I don't necessarily believe in bad foods, just bad habits.
Believe it or not, everything on Wendy's menu has nutritional value. The same can be
said for everything that McDonald's sells, or Burger King, or...well you get where I'm going with
this. You might be thinking to yourself, "Nutritional value? They all have fat, carbs, etc."
Mhmm...and contrary to what people are telling you, your body needs both fat and carbs. If you
cut out one, or both completely, you're going to start enjoying some tasty hospital food in the near future! And yes, they even have micronutrients in their delicious, greasy foods; the micronutrients such as vitamins and minerals that your body needs to function effectively. It's not much, I know, and it's definitely not as nutrient dense as some other lighter, healthier options. But it's definitely not something I would call "bad" for you, such as eating one burger from Wendy's is not going to kill you or make you gain fat. It's the amount that is eaten that we should be worried about, because let's face it, society as a whole just eats too much.
I have found that diets, or extreme diets, don't often work for most people in terms of fat
loss goals. And if somebody is seeing results from making extreme dietary changes, the results are usually temporary. I have clients tell me all the time about how guilty they feel, or how stressed out they are for eating something like a donut or cheeseburger while on a diet. Guys, it's okay. We live in a high stress society and adding more stress to your body by worrying about the foods you put in your mouth are going to backfire no matter how many calories you cut. Your body responds to stress by releasing chemicals and hormones that can slow down your metabolism, add fat and keep the fat, and cause you to stress out more once you see that you're not getting the results you want. Then you fall off the wagon and ditch the diet. Now that the diet has been tossed, you feel even more bad for yourself and think about how you failed, and....ahhhhhh!
Look, I love donuts. I love cake. I love fried foods. They're delicious, and I'm not ashamed to admit that I eat that stuff. I've noticed that society as a whole, likes to judge those who eat these "unhealthy" foods, which is pretty unfair when you think about the social and economic trends that are associated with these foods. I'm not saying I eat that kind of food all of the time. But when I want to, I will, and I'll enjoy every bite because it makes me happy. I don't stress out about it and think about the calories, because I know that I am doing okay and getting the proper nutrients and maintaining my calorie intake through the other food choices I make. Again, society as a whole eats too much, which just means we need to be smarter about the amount that we eat and not worry so much about the chicken wings you ate at the bar the other night. Get over it, move on and make a healthier choice later on if that helps you feel better.