Those shining eyes filled with excitement, that endless energy, that ceaseless desire to explore and learn… Don’t you miss it?
Summer is the time of play and fun but what I am hearing from many of my clients and readers is that you are too tired to enjoy it. Your energy is low and you would rather stay at home and watch TV because going outside is tiring.
You also feel that you should be at a different weight to enjoy summer. You should have lost weight before the warm weather but it never happened.
So now you don’t want to wear light summer dresses and shorts because they make you feel fat and ashamed of your body. Lack of layers to hide behind also brings up a lot of negative emotions and an internal dialogue that no one’s ears should ever hear.
Instead of feeling happy excited and playful, you feel like a tired failure with shame, guilt, and fatigue intertwined.
Oh, and let’s not forget a perpetually bloated stomach that many of you mention. The center of your being, your core, your second brain is so inflamed and sensitive that it brought you to the point of having a very unhealthy relationship with food. You take out all gluten and dairy only to find yourself binging on sugar. Or skip breakfast and have something tiny for lunch for the fear of getting bloated and then overeat at dinner. A vicious cycle that only keeps feeding digestion issues, puffy morning face, and a love/hate restrict/binge relationship with food.
You feel that weightloss and healthy digestion are a lost cause for you and you will never be able to enjoy life as much as you used to when you were young.
It can be hard to get out of this negative state but let’s try. One step at a time… Because you deserve it and because your body is capable of feeling that childhood zest for life again.
Here are a few steps to get started:
Reduce Inflammation – Inflammation is at the root of most disease and often an underlying cause of weight gain! According to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, processed sugars and other high-glycemic starches increase inflammation. Eating foods that you are allergic to causes inflammation and destabilizes your insulin and blood sugar levels. A high level of insulin affects cortisol, which causes your body to hold on to and deposit fat rather than allowing you to burn it for energy.
More and more evidence shows that inflammation can fuel brain changes that mildly or majorly affect mood. In fact, inflammation may explain the link between depression’s low moods. A steady diet of burgers, fries, and sugary baked goods laced with salt boosts depression risk by 51% — perhaps because these foods fuel inflammation.
The great news is that we can heal with anti-inflammatory foods that help you lose weight and heal digestion without dieting. Swap out sugar spiking breakfast cereals, bread and muffins with gluten free whole gluten-free grains such as quinoa, teff and amaranth. Pile your plate with fruits, veggies, and the good fats found in nuts (walnuts and macadamia nuts especially), olive oil, and fish (e.g., salmon or trout).
Commit to healing your gut – The health of your gut influences your mood, weight, and of course, the degree of bloating. The second brain informs our state of mind and emotions. ADHD, anxiety, depression, mood swings can often be traced back to the gut. In fact 95 percent of the body’s serotonin is found in the bowels.
Kids often have a stronger and younger digestive system that is not overloaded with years of heavy diet and bad eating habits. As a result they have more energy. When your digestion is weakened, your body has to extend a lot more energy digesting food and trying to get good quality nutrients from it. If you are not providing nutrient-dense easy to digest foods at most meals, your moods, weight, and energy will suffer.
Healing your gut is literally a prerequisite to leading a good quality life where you are able to enjoy abundant energy, self-confidence, healthy relationships, and adventures.
Retrain your brain – Oftentimes, as responsible adults, we loose the happy go lucky approach to life. We start focusing on problems to be solved, on things to be improved, on behaviors that need to be fixed or eliminated, on foods we can’t eat. Older adults laugh on average 17 times a day while kids laugh hundreds of times. It is quite natural. Our survival instincts always prioritized focusing on the negative so we are aware of the potential dangers. However, it doesn’t serve our happiness and playfulness very much.
If you find yourself stuck in a negative thinking cycle, you need to rewire your brain. You can change your thinking patterns the same way you can change your diet. Some practices that have been scientifically proven to re-wire our brains is listing things you are grateful for, saying positive affirmations, enumerating things that are going well in your life, celebrating small victories on a daily basis.
If you walk by a mirror, don’t tell yourself you look fat. Instead find at least one feature that you do love! If you did find yourself in a negative body rant, make an effort to say at least double the amount in positive things about yourself.
Acknowledge all the times when you’ve done well. Focus on all the times you have passed on a dessert or driven by the fast food joint rather than going in. Give yourself credit for your healthy eating successes, and don’t be too hard on yourself when you lapse.
It may be difficult to do it all on your own so I want to help you! It is not too late to have your happiest and most joyful Summer yet! Join me in the upcoming free webinar where we will discuss a simple 14 day plan to help your body let go of inflammation, bloating, and cravings so you can awaken your childhood zest for life! Sign up here