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How do I stop being obsessed with how healthy my diet is

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created July 24, 2013 at 9:31 PM

I don't count calories since I switched to paleo, but I'm always going over in my head the things I've ate that day and asking myself things like, did I get enough vegetables, did I eat too much protein, did I take in too much fructose from fruits, how much sodium did I get(because I salt my foods with Himalayan sea salt), I even go over everything I ate and determine my omega6/3 ratio to make sure it's in line, I also haven't eaten anything starchy in months and I could keep going on about things that I stress about in my healthy paleo diet. I basically need some reasons to tell myself why all of this is truly unnecessary, because I have a hard time convincing myself it is because its so easy to have a few more nuts than you should and have a skewered omega6/3 ratio or to have a little more meat than necessary and end up having almost 2g of protein per pound of my body weight. I just feel everything needs to be perfect about my diet and I need some help

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on July 25, 2013
at 10:11 PM

You don't have to worry about olive oil at 350. It has tested stable at 425.

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on July 25, 2013
at 04:42 AM

Finally: Eating disorders are easy to slide into and very difficult to get back out of. Please don't put yourself there for any reason.

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on July 25, 2013
at 04:41 AM

Another perspective: If you keep worrying like this, you run a substantial risk of either undereating (because you can't find the perfect food) or stressing yourself to the point where you snap and give up on the diet completely. Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good.

14b8422e9b449a21e06fa3349953d4f7

(220)

on July 25, 2013
at 01:08 AM

It's really stressing me out, so would I benefit from going 80/20 instead of 100/0 due to cortisol and stuff like that

C45d7e96acd83d3a6f58193dbc140e86

on July 24, 2013
at 10:41 PM

If you enjoy analyzing it, no worries, but if you are stressed about it, then the stress will begin to have a negative effect on your health.

14b8422e9b449a21e06fa3349953d4f7

(220)

on July 24, 2013
at 10:04 PM

I've gotten the results I wanted, I do intense exercise two days a week along with two two hour football practices which is half listening to instructions and other stuff and half running and stuff like that, I'm very lean and the most athletic kid on my football team despite being the second or third biggest, so it's more of a concern with optimal health, I'm always concerned about if I ate too much meat in which I wouldn't think I got enough vegetables and just basically a need to get everything right, and you said it, I am underestimating my body, but I still need input from other people

14b8422e9b449a21e06fa3349953d4f7

(220)

on July 24, 2013
at 09:40 PM

Some other things I ask myself are, did I get enough antioxidants, is the oil i used to cook not at its smoke point( I won't eat this side dish my grandma makes with white potatoes drizzled in olive oil and baked at 350 degrees), did I get too much phytic acid(I eat alot of cocoa powder and coconut and nuts and seeds), I also will not eat a single food that has one perservative in it(I have a can of coconut milk that just sits in my cupboard because it doesn't say BPA free and has pottasium metabisulphite) I also make my parents pay double for unhomogonized milk that's still pasturized

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2 Answers

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F69da86ad5ad986a09c73abd757863a1

(127)

on July 24, 2013
at 09:38 PM

Give your body a little more credit, after all, it's the most advanced machine here on Earth. It's important to pay attention to what you eat, but there's not need to go overboard. As long as your conscience of what you ingest (which it seems you are), I'm sure you are doing alright.

With that said, it seems like you may not be getting the results you would like to see based your concerns.

Are you exercising regularly? If not, maybe you should. If you are, maybe you should think about a periodized program so you see improvements. Equally important as eating paleo and exercise is ingesting the right paleo foods at the right time. Are you focusing on that?

14b8422e9b449a21e06fa3349953d4f7

(220)

on July 24, 2013
at 10:04 PM

I've gotten the results I wanted, I do intense exercise two days a week along with two two hour football practices which is half listening to instructions and other stuff and half running and stuff like that, I'm very lean and the most athletic kid on my football team despite being the second or third biggest, so it's more of a concern with optimal health, I'm always concerned about if I ate too much meat in which I wouldn't think I got enough vegetables and just basically a need to get everything right, and you said it, I am underestimating my body, but I still need input from other people

1
6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on July 25, 2013
at 10:10 PM

Sounds like you've got the orthorexic monkey on your back. Now is the time to shake it off before it turns into an eating disorder. If you can't do it on your own, do not hesitate about asking your parents to help you get in touch with an eating disorder counselor.

Yes, it is time for 80/20, 100% is turning you into a crazy person. Repeat after me, "I am a strong and robust omnivore. That means I can survive, and thrive on a wide variety and quality of foods."

I think one of the best things you could do for yourself right now, to help start shifting your mindset is to read this book, Fear of Food: A History of Why We Worry About What We Eat. I just started reading it this week, and it is fantastic at putting things in perspective.

http://www.amazon.com/Fear-Food-History-Worry-ebook/dp/B007I5N64M/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1374789470&sr=8-1&keywords=fear+of+food+a+history+of+why+we+worry+about+what+we+eat

Google books has a good excerpt of it here. http://books.google.com/books?id=CxKQ2Ak6_p4C&printsec=frontcover&dq=fear+of+food&hl=en&sa=X&ei=85_xUfvMBuaYiAKN8IG4Dg&ved=0CC8Q6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=fear%20of%20food&f=false

An exercise that I want you to start doing at your next meal, instead of analyzing it for nutrient content is to focus on first and foremost gratitude for having enough to eat, then the pleasure of the meal, the pleasure of your company eating the meal. At the same time I want you to be keenly aware of your inner monologue, worries, etc. Every time a voice pops up in there wanting to be critical or worried about what you are about to eat, try to watch the thought move by like you are watching a river flow by in front of you. Pull that anxious feeling out of your chest and observe it without judgement, rather than letting the tightness well up inside of you. If you feel that itch to run and plug your numbers into fitday or cronometer, go do something else not food related that will occupy your mind.

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