Monday, May 14, 2012

So-called Healthy Rules I Don't Follow

So there are several "rules" that often come to mind when it comes to being healthy, losing weight, dieting etc.  Now, keep in mind I don't believe in "going on a diet;" rather, I live my life every day eating a healthy diet (okay, the majority of days).  And however legitimate some of these rules may be, they are rules that I almost always break.  Generally, I break them for convenience, but for the most part, I break them because they either a) don't seem worth it or b) breaking them doesn't seem to negatively affect my lifestyle.

1. Don't Eat After 7pm (or whatever time)
I LOVE having a nighttime snack before bed.  I guess because it's something I grew up doing.  It's just part of my routine.  And yes, sometimes I have to be careful that it doesn't turn into an all out fridge-raiding binge fest, but usually I can control myself by having a 200-300 calorie snack depending on my overall intake that day and my exercise.  Usually that looks like one salty thing and one sweet thing.  Like a small bag of popcorn (100 calories) and a small serving of non-dairy ice cream (100-150 calories).  Maybe it is sabotaging my efforts to stay trim, but it doesn't appear to be.  I lost nearly 30 pounds while still eating a snack right before bed.  And even if I could have done so faster or more effectively, it still wouldn't be worth it.  My before-bed snack is a treat that I look forward to each night.

2. Eat fruit an hour before or after your meal.
I know that this has many benefits for vitamin absorption, and I should note to you that I usually do have a fruit separately from a meal as a snack at some point during the day.  However, during lunch particularly, I like to give myself something sweet, so I'll often have an apple or some mango with lunch.  I also put a half of a banana and some berries in my oatmeal every morning.  By dinnertime I've usually consumed my allotted amount of fruits for the day, so that usually isn't an issue.  Again, I could be getting better results in terms of nutrient and vitamin absorption if I followed this rule but it's what I enjoy and I'm afraid that if I spaced out my fruits accordingly, I might skip them all together.

3.  Eat slowly.
This one has many benefits for preventing over eating and aiding in healthy digestion, and I know it would help me, but for various reasons it's a rule that just doesn't seem worth it.  I try to eat slowly, but I almost always fail.  I just really LOVE food!  Trying to conform to this rule seems more arduous than is worth the benefits.  I don't usually overeat on a regular basis, so there doesn't seem to be a point anyway.  Eating slowly is something that I would recommend to people looking to prevent overeating, but I would tell them that for me, trying to conform to a pace that doesn't come naturally makes mealtime less enjoyable and thus, may not be worth it.

What are some "rules" you break?  Does it seem to make a difference?