We live in a tremendously hectic society dictated by long days that often don’t coincide with the schedule of our stomachs. With work weeks becoming longer and our daily lives being crunched by meetings, dates, classes and soon to be long summer nights, less thought than ever is given to what we put in our mouths at lunch time.
This has to stop.
More than ever, it’s becoming intrinsically important to monitor what we’re putting into our bodies. What you put in, you get out. Shoveling fast food and grubbing on TV dinners may be expedient and cheap, but it’s going to contribute to how you feel in a big way. Psychological aspects aside, the food you eat is one of the biggest contributors to how you actually feel throughout the day.
The human body is remarkably complex, but in many ways is also exceedingly simple. Think of it for a moment as a car. If you put in a very low quality fuel, you’re going to get bad mileage, a gunked up engine and ultimately shorten the lifespan of all its working parts. Your body is no different. Feeding yourself at the drive thru might be fast but it’s going to cost you in both the short and long term.
Your body is the only place you have to live, and it is most definitely NOT a garbage disposal, so quit treating it like one. Studies show that those who eat home cooked meals versus eating out have more effective days at work, more clarity in the classroom and even get better sleep.
Rid yourself of the archaic notion that eating healthy is a time consuming and overtly expensive endeavor. Some circumstances, depending on the frequency of which you eat out, can see you even saving money by buying more wholesome foods in bulk versus being friends with the guy working the drive thru. In the grand scheme of things, eating out even one less time a week than the average American may very well add years to your life.
Changing your diet can have immense physiological effects. Eating complex carbohydrates like whole grains instead of simple carbohydrates helps the brain produce serotonin production to stabilize your blood pressure as a way to reduce stress. Eating healthier fats like Omega-3’s versus the fats found in processed foods have been shown to reduce surges in stress hormones and protect against heart disease and depression.
Simple changes like switching a high caffeine energy drink to a vitamin filled fruit for a snack has been shown to reduce the amount of times a person falls ill in a given year due to Vitamin C. It’s not about some huge change to feel better, with food it’s all about the little changes.
People who eat better, feel better. Science has drawn a very distinct correlation between managing what passes into your stomach and how you feel throughout the day. There’s no rush to give up the weekend ice cream, and it’s okay to splurge for special occasions. Just pay a visit to the produce section instead of the frozen food section next time you’re at the grocery store and see if it doesn’t make you feel a bit better.