I am not a health food expert or personal trainer. I am not trying to reinvent the healthy wheel here. I am an ordinary woman who would like to eat healthy and struggles like the rest to keep up with it. But, I am also who woman who wants to encourage and journey alongside other women.
I do feel the need to tell you why I am writing about this topic at all. You see, I’ve opened a new space on the web. Maybe you know. It’s The Pointed Life. (It just does not have its own site yet.) The whole reason for The Pointed Life is to encourage women to shape and point every area of their life toward their God-given purpose.
Taking care of our bodies is one way we can do that. This week’s Pointed Focus is The Pantry Purge. Hence, the reason for this post.
I jotted a few notes based on my own experience about why it’s so challenging to eat healthy and some ideas to help overcome. I want to share them with you, and will you add your own in comments?
Why it is hard to eat healthy?
Having the desire to eat healthy does not make you a minority. Sticking to it just might. Being a minority usually means it is not easy. You have to go against the grain, and you will feel that grain pushing back. Almost everyone I speak with who wants to pursue a healthy lifestyle, wants to eat better. But I hear this lingering sound of defeat in their voice, perhaps remembering all the times they tried and didn’t stay the course.
This quote from Lysa Terkeurst, Made to Crave, speaks to that very thing–failure. “Whether we’re on the path toward victory or defeat is determined by the very next choice we make. Not the choices from yesterday. Not the choices five minutes ago.” Amen? Amen!
I am a strategic thinker. What that means is I am constantly looking down the road for possible obstacles or pitfalls and making decisions in my present to help avoid failing and falling. I think knowing the pitfalls of embarking on the healthy living journey can help keep us from falling. Here are a few, and maybe you know a few more.
1. We don’t know how to eat right. There’s no shortage information, opinions, diets, theories. It can be very overwhelming. We really need to know ourselves, and our own bodies.
2. We have food cravings. Yeah, these are kind of stinky. We eat the bad foods, then our body craves them. So we eat them more, and crave them more. It’s a cycle worth breaking, but be prepared for some withdrawals.
3. The aisles in the grocery store are against us. I walk into the grocery store and shake my head at the unfairness of it all. I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “Stick to the outer aisles when you shop. It’s were the fresh foods are. Skip most of the processed stuff.” Yeah, do that.
4. Unhealthy foods are convenient. They are cheap, easy to acquire, and they cater to our busy lifestyle. They have long shelf lives, and cook instantly. We can help make healthy foods a little more convenient by planning ahead.
5. Healthy foods are expensive: It should not be so, but it is. The foods that make us sick are easily obtainable and affordable. The foods that make us well, not so much. This will take some effort and a lot of creatively to find ways to afford to eat healthy. It is possible.
6. We lack or possess the wrong motivation. We are going to talk more about finding our why in the next post. There’s little lasting fulfillment in outer appearance. We need a deeper purpose for eating healthy and living a healthy lifestyle.
7. We go forward without a plan. Have you heard the saying, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail?” I like how the scripture says it, “The plans of the diligent lead surely to advantage…”(Proverbs 21:5a)
8. We eat emotionally. I am not qualified to speak on this aspect, but I can pray.
Lord, help us to care for our body as if we truly believe it is where you make your home. May God give us the desire for the things that are profitable. May we hunger and thirst after the things that will bring life and stamina to our bodies. May we find that we have such a clear vision of our future and the life that God wants for us that the desire to see it fulfilled over powers every temporary desire for immediate gratification of putting that thing in our bodies that we know will not profit us. In Jesus Name.
9. We do not know how hard it will be. If you begin this journey knowing that it is going to be a fight, but believe it is something worth fighting for, then you will.
10. We do not have anyone to be accountable to. I believe accountability is something we lack most in our life. We all need someone we can share our goals and progress with, all the while granting them permission to speak into our life and hold us accountable to them.