motivation mondayI have talked before about making healthy living a lifestyle, and its benefits over adopting a “fad diet” or racing to see how quickly you can possibly lose 10 pounds.  I guarantee you, you can be so much happier and more energetic, and your healthy lifestyle (and body) will last far longer, if you focus on eating healthily rather than eating “diet food” or following a “fad diet.”  I’m a huge believer in bio-individuality, and I don’t think that one nutrition plan is right for everyone, but I’m pretty confident that most fad, “too-good-to-be-true,” “lose-10-pounds-overnight”-type diets are helpful for almost no one.  being healthy is a lifestyle - blog 9.8.13(picture source)

In the past several weeks, I’ve stumbled across some crazy (in my opinion) diet “trends” … a woman feeding herself a tapeworm, abrasive tongue patches that make it painful to eat, and everything from wearing blue glasses to make food look nasty to eating cotton balls to fill up. At first, they seem funny, but really … it’s so sad that people will take such extreme measures to have their body look a certain way, instead of eating (and enjoying) delicious whole foods and appreciating themselves the way they are!  Today, take advice from one of my favorite quotes by Michael Pollan: “Eat food.  Not too much.  Mostly plants.”  Skip those crazy fads, and give your body some fruits, vegetables, and whole foods that make you feel great.  Happy Monday!  eat-mostly-plants-blog 9.9.13

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So, tell me in the comments … on Motivation Monday, what are YOU doing to make yourself healthier in the long term?  Have you ever followed a crazy “diet trend”?

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16 Comments

  1. Sara @ LovingOnTheRun on September 9, 2013 at 8:13 am

    I have definitely tried some of those crazy diets before! i am actually currently struggling with my diet and my high mileage. I am hungry all the time and I was turning to junk foods (My husband is known as “the candy man”) so there is always candy around. It has left me always feeling bloated and terrible. I am trying to revamp and clean up my diet! Day 1 was a success but if you have ANY tips I would gladly love to hear them!
    Sara @ LovingOnTheRun recently posted…Weekly Training Recap: 9/2 – 9/8 and BIC Band Giveaway Winner!My Profile

    • Megan Lyons on September 9, 2013 at 1:10 pm

      Hey Sara, congratulations on your Day 1 success! My husband has “junk food” around, too (ice cream that could last us for years + goldfish, tortilla chips, etc.), so I know how hard it can be to try to eat right for your body when there’s other tempting food around! My best advice would be: a) you are running some SERIOUS high mileage (which is impressive!) so your body needs a LOT of fuel. Many times, the best foods for your body are nutrient-dense, but not calorie-dense (think vegetables), so you may be surprised at the sheer quantity that you need to eat. I eat a ton of food by most people’s standards, but 80% of it is clean, healthy food (get it? Eating healthily … the LYONS’ SHARE of the time? :)). That leads into point b), which is that I don’t think you should deprive yourself of “treat foods” every once in a while (for example, I love chocolate, and I eat dark chocolate every single day). This sets you up for success, health-wise, and makes eating a whole lot more fun! (Plus, restricting yourself too much can lead to binging, which is a vicious cycle). Let me know if more questions come up as you go through your experiment!

  2. Davida @ The Healthy Maven on September 9, 2013 at 11:47 am

    In the past few years I have shifted my focus from eating “light” foods (aka 100 calorie packs and crystal lite gah!) to eating “clean”. I was shocked to see that I actually ate less and felt more satisfied eating real food no matter what it’s caloric intake was than when I was trying to not consume too many calories. Restricting made me grumpy and ultimately it back-fired. I look back now and can’t even imagine eating like that.

    I was seeing a naturopath for a bit while trying to sort out some health stuff and we got to talking about B12 shots. I found out a few months back I was pretty severely b12 deficient (digestion related, not diet related) and she told me that some people get b12 shots as a way to lose weight? Now I think that is just complete craziness!!! Eat good, real food. Be active and you would not believe the results! Thanks for this post lovely 🙂
    Davida @ The Healthy Maven recently posted…{MIMM} Weekend Recap 09/06-09/08My Profile

    • Megan Lyons on September 9, 2013 at 1:13 pm

      Thanks so much for your story, Davida! I hear you – I, too, was on the “lite” foods craze for a while as I was trying to lose weight about 10 years ago. Not only was I miserable, but it was HARD to do, and eating wasn’t enjoyable at all. Unlike you, I found that I actually eat a lot MORE now (but most of it is “real” food) … just goes to show that your body is really smart and will balance itself out if you just listen to it. This quote that you wrote describes my mentality completely: “Eat good, real food. Be active and you would not believe the results!” (PS – I’ve never heard of B12 shots to lose weight. I guess there are worse things to inject yourself with, but it’s amazing what people will do!)

  3. Jillienne @ ChasingRaspberries on September 9, 2013 at 11:24 pm

    Love this post! I have to say I have done my fair share of fad diets and fasts but it was not until I started eating clean, whole foods that the weight stayed off and I began feeling truly healthy.

    • Megan Lyons on September 10, 2013 at 8:45 am

      It’s amazing how many people with similar stories are out there, Jillian! So glad you’re feeling truly healthy now!

  4. Amanda @runtothefinish on September 10, 2013 at 10:51 am

    he really did nail it with his simple advice!! I am all about making small changes that turn in to habits! This week I am focused on planning and cooking, with so much travel that went buh bye and I miss having things ready to eat1
    Amanda @runtothefinish recently posted…Eating Clean on Family Vacation : Accountability MondayMy Profile

    • Megan Lyons on September 10, 2013 at 11:04 am

      I agree, Amanda! Getting back from travel is a good opportunity to “re-set” … although it looks like you incorporated awesome healthy travel tips like making an outing to the Farmer’s Market and being active with the family!

  5. Christine @ Gotta Eat Green on September 10, 2013 at 3:02 pm

    Oh I’ve done my fair share of fad diets! I always got sucked in.. and ended up eating just cabbage soup for a week before I would go crazy and go back to unhealthy eating. I’m so happy that I eat clean now and don’t worry about my diet so much. As long as I am working out and eating good I don’t really worry about it.
    Christine @ Gotta Eat Green recently posted…Bridesmaid BoxesMy Profile

    • Megan Lyons on September 10, 2013 at 3:35 pm

      Oh my goodness, cabbage soup for a week sounds miserable! Glad you’re not worrying about it as much – it’s amazing how much freedom we can give ourselves once we figure out what works for our own bodies, right?

  6. Clara @ Southern Thintellect on September 10, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    Well besides my daily dose of tapeworms… haha just kidding…

    Seriously though, I’ve formed a solid habit of eating smaller, more balanced meals throughout the day. I typically eat 5-6 times daily and the majority of those meals are fruits, vegetables and lean protein 🙂

    That’s when I’m not eating cookies of course…
    Clara @ Southern Thintellect recently posted…Marvelous is (NOT) AllergiesMy Profile

    • Megan Lyons on September 10, 2013 at 4:30 pm

      Haha! If you ever tell me you’re using tapeworms, you get one less blog follower pretty quickly!! 🙂 I think it’s really interesting that some people (like you and me) do better on smaller meals more frequently, while some feel healthiest on 3 square meals per day. Whatever works for your body! Including those cookies – that’s why we fuel our body with healthy foods most of the time, right?

  7. GiGi Eats Celebrities on September 10, 2013 at 7:12 pm

    I eat food – A lot… Mostly meat and fish! LOL!
    GiGi Eats Celebrities recently posted…The Pig of the Fish WorldMy Profile

    • Megan Lyons on September 10, 2013 at 9:35 pm

      :). Whatever works for your body!!

  8. Caitlin on September 12, 2013 at 10:36 am

    amen to this! i used to try to do low-carb, no carbs after X time, low-fat, blah blah blah. now i try to ask myself, what is normal? what did people do before the media stepped in and ruined our perception of ourselves? people ate when they were hungry, and ate a lot of plants! so i try to do that. i hate strict diet rules.
    Caitlin recently posted…Let the Sunshine (Award) InMy Profile

    • Megan Lyons on September 12, 2013 at 10:49 am

      That’s a great way to think about it, Caitlin! The media really does mess up our perceptions a lot of times!

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