“I need to get in better shape.” Eats a cheeseburger.
Want to improve your health? It may be difficult when food companies are not doing enough to help consumers eat healthy.
America is one of the most health conscious countries in the world. Yet, America is still one of the unhealthiest countries in the world. Meaning, Americans are concerned about their health and have an active interest in bettering their health, but the majority do not.
There are obvious reasons why so many people struggle with their weight and their health such as fast food places on every block, the price difference for unhealthy food, and people’s time restricted schedules. Yet, one thing that is really overlooked is the additives in food.
Food companies use additives
Additives in food make the food taste better, but they also make your cravings out of control. Additives like sugar, salt, and fats are all deadly drugs. Research has shown that consuming any one of these additives triggers the same bodily response as consuming cocaine.
The research project examined the brain scans of cocaine addicts to the brain scans of food addicts. When a cocaine addict saw cocaine, the brain scan showed a spike in the chemical dopamine, which is the “crave” feeling. Likewise, when food addicts saw a cheeseburger, their brain scans showed the same results of a spike in dopamine.
Food companies know most have a lack of self-control
This is valuable research that proves why the majority of people struggle with improving their health. Some people say that it is just a “lack of self-control,” but we have all tried going on a diet and then ended up giving in to eating and/or drinking something of sugar, salt, and/or fat because these additives are in almost every consumable product and they are addictive. That is why when people try to eliminate sugar, salt, and fat, they cannot help but to give in because the body goes through withdrawal.
Withdrawal is a period when you experience several uncomfortable symptoms due to the lack of the drug in use. While withdrawal symptoms vary from person to person, the most common food withdrawal symptoms are cravings, fatigue, irritability, headaches, muscle aches, lightheadedness, anxiety, nausea, and the chills. The severity of the withdrawal symptoms depends on your level of sugar, salt, and/or butter intake. The higher your levels, the higher the severities.
To “feel better,” people consume sugar, salt, or butter and their symptoms subside. Nonetheless, all the consumer industries that use any of these three additives, are the reason why the majority of people cannot improve their health no matter how much they want to.
It would be great if the government would pass a law that restricts the use of these three additives, but realistically, that, unfortunately, will not happen. Realistically, food companies will not take it upon themselves to limit the number of additives they use because they will lose money, and all they really care about is money. And this is the problem with this country. The U.S. cares more about money than promoting a healthy lifestyle and the wellbeing of the people.
How to improve your health
From a personal standpoint, to improve your health and lose body fat, requires a very high level of discipline and will-power. The withdrawal period varies but is typically around 2 weeks before you start to feel better. During the withdrawal period, ways to get through the withdrawal are by staying hydrated, increase fiber intake, increase protein intake, and to satisfy the cravings through natural fats and sugars.
Natural fats include avocados, nuts, and coconut oil. Natural sugars come from fruits like apples and cherries. You could also use a natural sweetener like Stevia which adds that sweetness without all the unhealthiness. Meal prepping will help a lot as well. With such busy schedules and always being on the go, preparing your meals and snacks will help you to stay on track. You can take a look at this list of 40 best natural fat burning foods to get you started.
Build healthy habits
Celebrity fitness trainer Simone De La Rue, who has trained celebrities like Chrissy Teigen and Reese Witherspoon, says that health is 80% nutrition and 20% exercise.
Meal prepping or employing simple salad diets is a very crucial step because you will save money and you have a better chance of avoiding all the unhealthy temptations. Carrying around a water bottle, like the way you always carry around your phone, is the one thing that cannot be emphasized enough. Developing this habit will help you fight off your hunger and not splurge on food.
This switch will not only improve your health by minimizing your risk for heart disease, diabetes, and other deathly diseases, but you will also experience improvements in your mental health. You will feel cleaner on the inside, you will have more energy, be in a better mood, less stressed out, and have more confidence.
Improving your health does more than change the numbers on the scale; it helps you mentally and spiritually to be at peace with yourself. You take charge of your life, instead of letting the food industry take control of you.
Get more involved with your community
Having people with the same goals as you will help stay accountable and help to motivate you to create a lasting healthy lifestyle, rather than a healthy lifestyle that only lasts for a week or two. Make small goals and cross them off your list as you accomplish them. Doing this will help you from a mental standpoint to be closer to your goal.
Get more involved in the community and participate in group activities. This will help you to get out and get moving as opposed to laying in bed and only getting up to get food or to go to the bathroom. While your home is your sanctuary, staying in the comfort of your home leads to a higher risk of binge eating and watching TV all day. You can also check out the HealthyWage app which offers people the opportunity to earn cash for losing weight. Earn cash for losing weight? It’s true.
The Bottom Line
So, do your part. I know how difficult it is. I struggled with my weight and my health for as long as I can remember. I was always the fat girl. My freshman year of high school, I was 5’9” and 225 lbs. Up until that point, I was very introverted and did not have many friends so I just stayed at home and would binge eat. When I got involved in sports, sports took up so much of my time that I did not have a lot of downtime anymore to continue my bad habits.
Sports helped me to take control of my health and helped me to grow as a person. I was able to make more friends and become more comfortable in my own skin. It also led to me being a successful NCAA Division I athlete.
As you can see, just taking that one step of joining a team, helped to completely change my physical health, my mental health, and it led to other benefits like a scholarship to play in college. It really is all about just take that first step and having someone on the same page as you to help you and hold you accountable. Then, everything falls into place.