Six steps for the diet change paradigm
Many patients who come into our clinic decide they want help with their diet, regardless of what you come in for no one leaves without us addressing this very important point. Take a look at the word “Die”t…., no wonder it’s so hard for people to stick to one, it’s a bit threatening. Diets will trigger a small death inside someone because of the pain caused by taking out what tastes so good! There’s a real need for healthy food relationships and our goal is to shift and transform that relationship to one that serves you and your health. Our quick fix culture of 3-5 day cleanses and binge dieting is all people feel they have time for. Whether it’s a short attention span, not having time to connect with the food preparation process, or lacking the knowledge and will power to create habits. We are sold the plan with the quickest reporting results only to end up back where we started. We are a culture of convenience and we have everything we could ever want to know about at our fingertips, from the internet for information, to resources that allow us to connect with people from all over the world, and of course fast food, with our busy schedules who has the time to cook!
Most people who come in say “I’ve tried everything the Zone diet, the Atkins diet, the no carb diet, the gluten free diet and nothing has worked”. Anything worth doing is worth doing right as Hunter S Thompson put it. First we have to discover that if what we’re doing is actually right for us. So one of the biggest contributing factors to a diet change is looking at whether you are doing it in alignment with what your body needs, and secondly are you being consistent.
Ultimately diets don’t fail, we do (I’m not saying all diets work we don’t agree with some because the science isn’t there to support it). What I’m suggesting is that why we fail is more important to discover. There can be many reasons for this such as: we don’t have the right information, we don’t have the willpower, we don’t have the time, we don’t have the support. In fact we’re usually good at finding what’s wrong and are good at pointing fingers. Those that succeed are ones who let the internal environment constantly condition and realign the goals and give less weight to what’s happening outside of us. This means to create a mindset/paradigm of health consciousness. Our thoughts and actions are in alignment. We are not in alignment if we’re thinking “why aren’t I losing weight while eating a bag of “vegan/gluten free” potato chips or a bowl of dairy free low fat ice cream?”
The conversation needs to change from diet change to lifestyle modification, behaviour modification, habit modification and getting in tune with that innate intelligence within-we need to create a paradigm shift. We want to help people make the necessary changes that support an ideal nutritional plan, while working on the programming that actually support the process. What we’re eating is a part of our problem but even more important than what we’re eating is why we’re eating the way we are. With the increased pace of life we live in we’re wanting our body to deal with it by giving it the food it wants as quickly as possible. This is usually high calorie and low nutritional content food which perpetuates the cycle of craving and binge eating. This works for a time and then eventually our body gets overloaded with toxicity, adiposity (fat tissue) and adrenal fatigue that we can no longer sustain things.
Your goals and needs are going to be different than someone else’s, therefore the plan needs to be individualized to your specific health goals, your constitution and basal metabolic rate, while addressing any outstanding health concerns. Most people want to have more energy, better sleep, improved digestive function, clearer skin, remove the need for medication or a diagnosis (diabetes, hypertension, outstanding lab markers etc). More often than not a diet is a plan to lose weight. Well I don’t know about you but when I lose something I typically want to find it again. The paradigm that we are stuck in is one that markets a world of possibility and doesn’t tell you the work involved. Take a moment to consider how many times in the last year you decided on making a diet change. For most people it’s every Monday after a weekend of too many drinks, too much bread, too many desserts etc.
Our 6 steps to an individualized nutrition/lifestyle program
1) Discovery: Determine your goals for wanting to diet: lose weight, have more energy, clearer skin etc
2) Educate: Reframe the diet paradigm to lifestyle modification so that the diet isn’t what you’re working on but a change in nutritional habits unfolds from wanting to be healthier. Instead of focusing on what you can’t have, focus and educate yourself on what you can. Seek your Naturopathic Doctors guidance so that something can be prepared for you. First Line Therapy is the most comprehensive, individualized, patient friendly, scientifically validated program we’ve seen available.
3) Commit: Write down your goals and make sure you put them somewhere you can see them daily. Reading them aloud morning and night can help keep you on track. Keeping a little note in your pocket to review before you pull out your wallet to pay for a high calorie and low nutrient snack.
4) Consistency: Eat small frequent meals through the day (every 3 hours). Eat a good protein source like incorporating a high protein medical food/nutritional shake within 1 hour of waking to prepare your blood sugar for the day. Hydrate: 1/2 body weight in kg in ounces of water. Eat as many above ground vegetables as you like through the day (aim for 5 servings/day). Limit grain intake to your bodies metabolic needs.
5) Integrate: Rewiring your subconscious programs for success by turning your lifestyle/nutrition changes into a habit. This requires sticking to a plan for a minimum of 40 days.
6) Transform: Your goals and actions are in alignment and you’re operating with a new level of wisdom through the experience you had. Time to learn and discover some more!
5 Naturopathic tools for enhancing nutrition
1) First Line Therapy: Lifestyle medicine using medical foods for your body type, your basal metabolic rate which determines your caloric intake and your specific health goals. Ask your Naturopathic doctor about the program.
2) Intravenous Vitamin Therapy: quick delivery for high dose nutritional repletion.
3) Discover Food Sensitivities and lab testing for nutrient deficiencies and disease processes: These could be contributing to toxicity and chronic health concerns.
4) Healing the digestive system through supplementation: Probiotics, Essential Fatty Acids, Fiber, Protein, Antioxidants, mucilagenous herbs.
5) Seasonal Cleansing: maintaining the bodies elimination systems. This enhances absorption through the digestive tract and keeps the body’s immune system strong.