I’m really like science. Possibly a bit too much.
When I started my education to become a Integrative Nutrition Health Coach the only thing I understood about health was what to eat, how much to support muscle gain, weight loss, reduce hunger; how to perform training for maximum performance and that sleep was very important.
I’d read a fair bit about this and was pretty sure I knew the way.
None of this is a bad thing, my perspective was just a bit limited.
One of the first concepts introduced during the education was that of Bio Individuality.
Simply put, this means that we are all different on a biological level. The foods that nourish one person might not be the right choice for another, the training that one person performs might not be right for another.
It’s very easy to get caught up in science and knowledge, letting it influence our decisions around our health at the detriment of it.
I’m certainly not exempt to this and many times I’ve simply tried to fit myself into the “perfect lifestyle” instead of creating it around me. Listening to my body & mind, and adjusting depending on what actually feels right.
Sure, this is a slippery slope. Eating ice cream for breakfast “feels” good, but it probably isn’t the best decision long term.
Performing 2+ hour CrossFit workouts on a ketogenic, paleo-vegan diet while intermittent fasting and incorporating cold showers to reduce inflammation might sound good on paper, but it really didn’t work for me.
We’re all different, and our needs change depending on too many factors to list, sex, age, acticity level, heritage, stress levels and season just to name a few.
So, I’ll end this blog on Bio Individuality with a few tips on how to incorporate the concept in your own life.
Start a journaling practice. Ask yourself questions about your health.
How did you sleep?
What did you eat?
What was your activity or exercise?
How did this affect your
If you try a new diet promising everything you’ve ever wanted but feel like shit when you try it, is the diet right or are you?
Practice listening to yourself
Science commonly shuns the idea of “listening to the body”. Sure, cold hard data is great, because unlike us humans who lie to ourselves to avoid pain, data doesn’t. But, listening to ourselves is also an art, and it must be practiced. So practice, see journaling above.
Humans are comfortable creatures. When we settle into a habit it’s hard to change it. We easily become used to both hardship and success. In the case of health it’s easy to assume all is well or that we can’t feel better, but health is addictive. Make a small change and if you feel better, you’ll probably want to stay with that habit. Do that, and add another.
Accept that what worked before might not serve you forever. Circumstances change, and to adapt, you have to change too.