A Very Simple Thought That’s Helping Me To Be More Healthy

A Simple Thought Which Helps Me To Be More Healthy

You know how a simple thought can sometimes change your life quite significantly?

Well I just had one. I’m on week 4 of the slow carb diet which I learned about when reading Tim Ferris’ latest book the 4 hour body.

I’ve never been into diets and really subscribe to the simple idea of ‘eat healthy, eat less, move more’ if you want to control your weight and health, but I haven’t always been the best myself at doing those three things. I love experimenting so the slow-carb diet (which sounds worse than it is) intrigued me and I’m giving it a go. As much as an experiment as anything else.

I’m not sure I’m going to write much about it (the slow-carb diet) as it’s not really something I would give as health advice – I just like experimenting. In the end I’ll come up with my own version which doesn’t eliminate all fruits, avoids eating too many eggs and lets me keep on drinking my beloved tea with milk.

So what’s the point of this post?

It’s not to tell you about that diet.

It’s to tell you about what that diet has made me realize. It has made me realize a little more about food. Without trying. The thought I had is this – it’s quite simple:

Every time you put something into your body it is an opportunity to be healthy.

Because I am good at obeying rules I have been literally forcing myself to eat things I wouldn’t normally eat. Not that I don’t like them particularly but I just wouldn’t normally buy them, things like kidney beans, lentils, mackerel fillets, however many different types of salad leaf you can name, celery (lots of – I’m loving celery at the moment) and so on.

So far this diet has been an experience. Meals have become sustenance more than anything else but I do believe I’m developing a taste for healthier food. My choice is this. Because I’m on this diet anyway, why not put the healthiest food & drink into my body. i.e.

Every time you put something into your body it is an opportunity to be healthy.

It may be easier for me because of the moment and the fact I’m on that diet anyway. But even if I weren’t I think just this simple thought has changed my perspective slightly. If I owned a really high-end fancy car like a Ferrari or a Lamborghini (I don’t, I drive an old Polo) then I wouldn’t put low grade oil in or mix vegetable oil in with the petrol (some people do that to save money). If we wouldn’t treat a car like that why do we put so much crap into our bodies. At least when you eat crap be conscious of the choice you’re making.

Plus there are plenty of really great tasting healthy foods out there. Plenty.

So, every time you put something into your body it is an opportunity to be healthy.

That’s it. I know it’s really simple but it’s kind of profound too at the moment for me somehow. Let me know what you think.


A Very Simple Thought That’s Helping Me To Be More Healthy — 20 Comments

  1. Diets aren’t the way to go when it comes to losing weight on some people. That’s because they create temporary eating patterns and, therefore, temporary results. Most dieters gain back any lost weight when they go back to their old eating habits.

  2. Alan,
    This is fascinating. I absolutely love that I now personally know someone who is trying Tim’s slow carb diet. I find it interesting that you’re seeing very little results though. I wonder if it depends on body type?
    Diets don’t work for me although after i had my second child i did to a carbless diet and only ate fruits and veggies for 3 months and lost all my pregnancy weight. It changed the way i ate because it just become habbit to eat more healthy.. i think what you are doing by putting only healthy things in your mouth and even trying things you wouldn’t normally eat is the equivalent of that…

    Since my 30 day fast, i’ve noticed i have trained myself to eat less rice which i adore but now i can easily fill up on an apple and feel somewhat satiated. I still love carbs it just takes less.

    • Thanks Annie, glad you liked it.

      I actually did my own diet some time ago which worked much better than this. Some one in fact offered to buy it off me (it was basically a spreadsheet – you know I love spreadsheets). However this one is screwing with my mind much more than my own did – which is interesting.

      I am starting to see some results now, I’m into week 6 but it has taken a while and they’re certainly not as profound as Mr Ferris claims in his book (despite me sticking strictly to the diet).

      I hear what you’re saying about changing habits – hopefully one outcome of this will be that I am happy with smaller portions or even just remember to eat smaller portions. As I said in the article one thing I’m set on is being more conscious of what I’m eating – because it seems to take so much for the weight to come of it’s really going to make me think twice about what I put ‘in’ in the first place.

      Also my ‘cheat’ days are becoming less of a binge – even though I’m still stocking up on crap for those days, I’m eating smaller amounts of the crap 😉

      I want to ask you more about the fasting diet – that really intrigues me – maybe my next stop!

      thanks for the comment 😉


  3. Well said. Sometimes the simplest things are the best.

    I know that when I was living at my healthiest I had a similar mindset. I would look at every bit of food as a small part of a larger whole. That put a little more importance on each thing I ate and made me be a little more particular about what I eventually did eat. I was pretty good at it too and I rarely ate anything bad for me.

    If you look at it this way too, then you’re faced with a lot of opportunities to be healthy. And when I look at it like that, it makes me want to not miss those opportunities.

    • Thanks Steve,

      I’m not sure I’m good at it, but it has certainly made me think, and exactly as you said, though his diet is not having anything like the results I expected (which I think I’m going to write a brief post about shortly) it has done something – it has taken me part of the way there. Killing myself with this strict diet without results means if I can put myself through this, I can do more. If every time I eat I have the choice to be healthy, and I’m doing this diet anyway, I may as well make that choice as healthy as I can and eventually that HAS to pay off.

      Eventually I think I’ll see results more from this concept of choosing to be healthy within the diet than the diet itself (e.g. choosing to drink more water, recognising an emotional desire to eat vs being genuinely hungry etc).

      Thanks for the comment Steve, I’m really glad to see that this idea resonated with you.

  4. I would really love some advice and help with emotional eating/stress eating call it what you like. I feel this is like the white elephant in the room present in so many people’s lives but simply ignored. I am going tonight for my first counselling session to tackle exactly this but any article on this subject would be very much appreciated.

  5. Hey Alan,

    Hats off to you for experimenting with the 4HB. I did try it for a few weeks but found I was putting weight on with the beans I was eating. My body did not react to it the way it should have! I did try the sleep experiment for 2 months though – decided to go for the biphasic cycle. Now that was a learning experience!

    This post has come at the right time for me. I too am being (or trying to be) conscious of what I eat but find myself not being as disciplined as I’d like. Your thought is simple and excellent. I shall implement it!

    – Razwana

    • Thanks Razwana!!

      I said I was on the 4HB diet, but I didn’t say if it was working, did I? Actually I have exactly the same problem. I am being VERY strict and following the diet but somehow I’m not seeing results either. In theory you should be able to eat as much as you want on both normal days and cheat days (slow carbs and ANYTHING respectively) and the diet should then work. My body thinks differently.

      At least I’m not seeing anything like the results claimed in his book. After 4 weeks, I might be starting to see a tiny difference (I purposefully didn’t weigh myself so it’s hard to tell other than seeing & feeling results) but for how tough the diet is, the results aren’t stacking up yet. I will stick at it for longer though because I like the challenge and I Kind of quite like the massive contrast between the week and cheat day (I stocked up on all kinds of sweets and rubbish for my cheat day this week).

      Thanks for your kind comments. How long did you try the 4HB diet for out of interest?

      • 7 very miserable weeks. By week 4 I didn’t enjoy the cheat days as I just felt bloated and horrible (attractive – I know). I also worked out with a kettle bell (10kg) and didn’t really see a vast improvement. Perhaps it works over time, but I wasn’t convinced.

        Have you tried an ice bath yet? I thought that part was hilarious. Why would the average person EVER buy that much ice, but only to fill the bath??!!

        • eh? Ice bath? No I didn’t read that bit.

          In fact I only read the chapter on the Slow carb diet itself and thought I’d give it a go. I didn’t read anything about an Ice bath and I’m going to pretend you didn’t tell me! Don’t tell anyone you told me!

          OK well now at least I have to beat your 7 weeks 😉

          I felt bloated on my last cheat day too. Am I really supposed to have an ice bath? That’s got to be an optional extra, right?

          • Yes, the ice bath is optional! There’s a section where he talks about his experiments with different fat burning techniques – amongst chemicals and intense exercise, ice baths was one of the options.

            Let me know how you get on with the diet and if you feel any different after it. I’d be interested to know…

            – Razwana

  6. I still have trouble keeping a good control on what I eat. I have some trouble with that and though I am working hard on exercise and fitness; food control is one area that I fall short on. I like the way you present it as every time an opportunity to be healthy..

    • Hi Hajra,

      me too! That’s why I need very simple rules to follow otherwise without boundaries… well, you can guess the rest. But I’m pretty good with rules I set myself as long as they make sense to me. For the moment this thing is an experiment, but the Interesting thing is more the effect it is having on my thinking than on my body.

      I also finally posted the first vid as promised & thanks again for your feedback on my list of business models – I’m going to bear that in mind as I do the next ones…

      take care & best wishes,

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