How healthier habits don’t have to be restricting

Wellness Wednesday

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – Dietitian can sound like a scary word, but the truth is, dietitians only want to help you explore the many benefits of a healthy diet. That includes benefits like a better relationship with food, heightened immune systems, and more food, yes you read that right, more food!

Carmen Moyers, a registered dietitian at Huntsville Hospital says all food can fit in at different times and places. It’s pretty simple, she says it’s all about balance and giving your body the food it needs and making sure you’re getting enough of it.

Most people believe that removing foods that are “bad” is the key to a healthier lifestyle, but she says it’s a healthy relationship with food and not feeling guilty that’s the goal and something many dietitians focus on now.

“Adding things in, enjoying foods and learning on how to listen to your body’s cues and allowing craving and how to make sure how you change your mental focus around it, it can change your relationship with food,” Moyers told News 19.

Moyers says, “take guilt off the plate,” and create a healthy relationship with food. Having a balanced diet is less about losing weight, but more about being healthy and looking beyond the stigma of what you see and what’s on the scale.

“It’s a very common piece in our culture and has been for many years and continues to be, there are a lot of dietitians working to change that and change the view around body size being an end-all and be-all of health and other factors similar to that and focusing on adding things in and enjoying foods and learning how to listen to your body,” Moyers said.

How you view food is a key factor to a healthier life, seeing food a good source of energy and not something bad.

“When you change your mental focus around it, it can change your relationship it becomes so much easier to enjoy those foods that you know take care of your body and enjoy those foods that you just enjoy because they’re tasty but in a way that still benefits your body,” Moyers said.

Those foods that you once dreaded and are now starting to enjoy can even give your immune a boost.

“The biggest things I would recommend would be having a varied diet and every culture has different ways to enjoy fruits and vegetables and whole grains, so I never say eat this specific superfood. Find what works in your culture and add those fruits, veggies whole grains and proteins in there,” Moyers said.

Balance, knowing what works for your body is important. But if you’re lost, Moyers says researching articles written by licensed dietitian or meeting with someone one on one can really help when it comes to changing your habits.

“There’s no right or wrong way to start or too old or too young,” Moyers says just starting is enough and the staff at Huntsville Hospital is always there to help.

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