During my quest for health, I tried many things that didn’t work and made plenty of mistakes. Some of these missteps cost me time (not getting better), some cost me money and and some cost me both. Maybe you’ve gone through this, too.
You won’t find the common health mistakes of smoking, drinking too much or not getting enough sleep or exercise on this list of health mistakes. Instead, I want us all to take a look at how our obsession with efficiency–with the quickest, most sensible health fix–holds back our health.
1. The Magic Pill Promise
There is a pill to magically take away all your pain. There is a pill to magically suck away all your fat– no matter how much you eat! There is a pill for everything.
We want to believe in these pills. We want them to work because we want to feel and look better.
Think about it though: How can a tiny little 500 gm pill make up for the pounds of sugar we eat, the bowls of greens that we don’t consume, the shopping carts full of dumb carbs and junk food we replace whole foods, fresh fruits and whole grains with?
The only answer to this question is that it is magic. The ads promoting that pill usually won’t use the “magic” word–but that’s what they’re selling us. These weight loss methods come equipped with a rational explanation for why and how the product works. But, any position or viewpoint can be explained rationally. That doesn’t make it true or applicable to your situation.
2. The Quick Fix Diet
I am very suspicious of any diet named after a famous city or a single food.
Some examples include the Beverly Hills Diet, the Park Avenue diet, the martini diet, the peanut butter diet and the grapefruit diet. This doesn’t make any of these particular diets necessarily unhealthy. However, many diets framed this way are silly and neglect nutritional balance.
Any diet that promises quick weight loss in a short time is suspicious. Any diet that doesn’t encourage not just a long-term plan, but a lifetime plan, is suspicious. Just because a friend tried this diet and lost some weight doesn’t mean you will have the same results.
A good lifetime approach to food will feed the body instead of just restrict calories. It will balance the body’s systems and organs, it will improve the digestion instead of destroying it. It will take into consideration your own personal uniqueness and possible food sensitivities.
3. Blinded by Science: Don’t be a guinea pig for ‘new’ discoveries.
Nutritional science is young. Just because a scientist has discovered new nutrient XYZ, it doesn’t suddenly mean you need XYZ in a supplement or added to your yogurt.
This new nutrient could be helpful, but no matter how many doctors and researchers are explaining its value in very scientific and convincing language – if it hasn’t been used for long periods of time, you can never be sure of the long-term results on your health or if sticking to a whole food diet is better.
Consider Vitamin C, for example. It is the oldest known vitamin, discovered in 1747. We have been enjoying Vitamin C from the apples, oranges and vegetables we eat for tens of thousands of years. The lowly orange, contains vitamin C plus THOUSANDS of other nutrients. These include bioflavonoids, MANY other vitamins, many trace minerals, live enzymes, and a host of phytonutrients that nutritional science is just starting to discover.
Many long standing cultures have rich traditions of food science. They have been producing healthy happy individuals for centuries. These cultures systematically classified foods and herbs according to how they benefited the body. The ayurvidic system, for example, even understood acid/alkaline balancing thousands of years ago.
Achieving peak health IS something that you can work towards your whole life with ease and joy… as long as you are not in a hurry and are willing learn.
Have YOU tried out diets or supplements that didn’t work in your health journey?
This article is written by Randy Fritz and contains excerpts from the free e-book The 3 Secrets Health Habits of The Naturally Slim and Healthy – co-authored by Diana Herrington.