Marie Kondo and her methods for tidying up are sweeping the nation. It seems like everyone is talking about her and implementing her advice into their lives. On Saturday morning my husband and I started tidying up our bedroom. And I said, if we’re going to really do this I need coffee first. And I thought, I need a latte, because that latte sparks so much joy. A lightbulb went off in my head. What if we all used her simple principle of “does this spark joy?” to everything we eat. I began thinking of the foods that really sparked joy in my life. I made a list of four: lattes, big bakery style cookies, Australian red licorice and recess peanut butter holiday shaped cups. Nothing else made the list because even though I like it, it doesn’t spark joy. It actually sparked feelings of angst and regret and shame.
Most of the foods that spark joy in all of our lives will probably be high fat, high sugar, “non diet” foods. All foods we assume we shouldn’t eat on a diet. Wrong. Don’t think of it like that. Think, anything that’s not on this list of joy foods should be removed from my diet.
Most of the time when we fall of our diets its not even for something we love. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve eaten 150 chips and salsa mindlessly while watching football or 6 lackluster store bought cookies at a BBQs or 9 random pieces of candy from a bowl at work. None of this food brought me joy. I eat that stuff because it was there and because I think I like it. I think I need it. But the truth is, cutting out all of these foods are going to be the key to success. Because that’s the stuff that’s around more. Those are the foods that are more detrimental because we eat more servings of them. And since we don’t enjoy them when we’re eating it’s usually mindless. And this food isn’t satisfying so we continue to eat to find the satisfaction.
It’s ok to eat what you love. But if you love pizza, make sure you eat the best piece of pizza in NYC. If you love cookies, go to the best bakery and get the best cookie. Let yourself enjoy the things you truly love. Make a list in your head of the things you truly love and those things should never be removed from your diet. And if you eat them with love and the best versions of them, you will have success.
Remember, understanding your mind will always be the key to weight loss success.
Today, think about a food that pop culture has deemed unhealthy that you actually enjoy. Or a healthy food that you loathe but eat because you think you have to. For me, it’s peanut butter. I love peanut butter! I know there are healthier nut butters I can choose, I’ve tried them all because most diets call for the removal of peanut butter but you know what I love peanut butter and it can easily be part of my daily life without being detrimental. Maybe you’ve sworn off carbs but you want bread, add a slice back in. Maybe the diet your on calls for you to eat plain Greek yogurt and you just want your strawberry more sugary version back. Maybe you love pasta but are struggling to choke down zoodles each night. Portion it the same way you’d portion a healthy good. That’s right, Bring it back! All foods can be part of a healthy diet.
What’s a health food you just can’t get on board with? And what can you replace it with that brings you more joy?