Thursday, 5 February 2015

The real-life RD has a point

Hey there friendly friends! How's everyone going today?

I've had something that has been on my mind for a while now. When something's on my mind it stays there. So my solution is to learn more about that something, read more, investigate further, get my mind around it. And still it's stuck there on my brain... so my only option is to do a brain spew of everything I've been thinking on this topic.

What I'm talking about is a lesson I learned from The Real Life RD, a fantastic blog written thoughtfully by the amazing blogger Robyn. The lesson her entire blog teaches. The lesson of eating!
Yes, I was confused too, but as I continued reading through her many well-written posts on the topic of restoring a slow metabolism etc. I began to understand. It made sense.

If you've ever read a diet magazine or seen an advertisement for a dieting program/ eating plan or heard about a certain celebrities healthy way of eating... you know that there is a lot of info out there on what's considered healthy. This can mean one of two things.

1. There is so much information and complex things to learn in order to be healthy.
2. Or two, no one truly knows the perfect way to be healthy- no one has the true answer.

So, just like all those diet advertisements and newest research proclaiming some ancient unheard of fruit to be the healthiest food on the planet, my thoughts are just thoughts too- not the answer!

 The biggest thing I take away from Robyn's posts is her urgency at informing readers that eating a diet of 1200 calories (typical weight loss diet) is no where near enough to sustain a healthy life. It is ridiculously low in calories. It isn't healthy. 
She goes on to say that neither 1400, 1600, or even 1800 calories is enough to sustain oneself properly.

'The majority of women need 1,300 to 1,500 calories per day to just maintain LIFE.'

 That's not even taking into account any extra exercising, moving, grocery shopping, cooking, cleaning etc. That's just breathing, making sure your heart is beating and your kidneys are working. Yet for some reason we need to eat 1200 calories a day to lose weight? I feel as though these numbers aren't adding up.

If things don't add up then problems start to occur. Your body isn't in taking enough and it comes as no surprise that what food is does get it stores. Metabolism is slowed. Burning energy doesn't happen as it should. Weight loss becomes very difficult. 
 You know that one girl at school who ate everything and everyone was so jealous because she was still thin? Her metabolism was normal. Everything she was eating her body was using as fuel, not freaking out and storing it as fat because it doesn't know when it will be fed again.

I guess, to all of my friends I am that girl. I come to school with huge lunches (albeit filled with lots of delicious veg, wholegrains, legumes and other good stuff) the one who always packs a snack wherever we go and never misses a meal. And yet the most common solution teenage girls (and I'm sure any other aged girls/ even guys) is not to mimic the behaviour they're seeing right in front of their eyes- oh no, that would be ludicrous! It's to cut down on their already deficient daily caloric intake. 
                                  Typical Steph sandwich- try getting your mouth around that!

 The worst part- they will see results and quickly too! The question is- are these the results they really want. By not feeding your body adequately it still feeds. It feeds on whatever is in your body. Food becomes unavailable? Your muscle because the next best option for your bodies protein needs. Losing wight in the form of muscle mass is not OK.

  After these quick results, your body jumps into action. It's such a smart machine and so to keep you and your vital internal organs surviving, it's got to slow down on the quick, healthy burning of energy. Any food that is consumed is safely stored away and then slowly broken down into energy to make sure it lasts, to make sure you last. 

Results start to slow, you're always tired, you don't have enough energy, your hair is brittle, you don't look healthy and you are lacking in many vital minerals and nutrients all in the name of being thin like that friend of yours who eats everything. It's almost comical that the solution to the problem at hand is to eat. Fuel your body with the nutrients it needs- and a lot of them too, because our bodies are energy burning machines! We're supposed to have healthy metabolisms that burn all the energy we give to our bodies. 

It's time we all developed a trusting relationship with our bodies. To trust that our hunger signals are justified and we should honour them. To trust that our body knows what it's doing and if it's sending you signals (tiredness, fatigue, hunger pangs) we should listen. To trust that our body needs fuel and a lot of it.

It's no coincidence that as the diet and media industry continues to grow and grow, so does the number of over weight people and other food-related diseases. It's time to get back to the time when food was just food, there was no target amount of calories you should/ shouldn't be eating, back to the time when we didn't over think our eating and in turn didn't create even more problems than we started with.

Wow, I've rambled on, haven't I? It just goes to show that this is a topic I am passionate about and if you want to learn more and hear all of this from someone who knows much more about it than me, please head over to The Real Life RD and read about what Robyn has to say because it makes sense. It's so much easier than we think.

This is me just Thinking Out Loud- if you want to see what everyone else is thinking about this week head on over To Running with Spoons for Amanda's awesome link-up!

Any thoughts are definitely encouraged!

Bye for now friendly friends! Have a great day! :D


  1. I love Robyn's blog for that same exact reason -- she encourages people to eat as much as their bodies NEED rather than what popular media tells them to. I went through years of undereating and restricting, and while it worked in the short run, it messed my system up big time in the long run. It took a good long while to restore my metabolism after that, but it's nice to be at a place where I don't have to worry about my body clinging desperately to anything I eat. That and I just feel so much better too. I don't think most people realize that they're really robbing themselves of a lot of life by eating less than they need.

  2. Thank you for sharing this information - great post! I am definitely going to check that out!

  3. I adore Robyn's blog! I think it may be the website I frequent most when I am in need of reading some blogs. She is full of great wisdom. :)

  4. Amanda,
    I feel like I was starting to spiral into that same sort of thinking- restricting because I was starting to see results, yet feeling terrible, tired and irritable (not to mention hurting my metabolism. I am so glad I found Robyn's blog too!
    Erin- that's exactly the reason I wanted to share this post- to get The Real Life RD's message noticed some more and for people to go check out what it's about!
    Julia- I am exactly the same! I'm always scrolling through lots of old posts on there and still finding them so relevant and interesting!
    Thanks for all of your comments!
    Steph 2 chef xxx

  5. You definitely hit this topic beautifully! And summarized the problem and the consequences of eating too few of calories a day. I am going to share this on my blog facebook page in a couple of weeks (already scheduled it).

  6. Kaylin,
    Thank you so much! You don't know how much comments like yours mean to me! I felt really strongly about this post and am glad I got my message across well :)
    Thanks again,
    Steph 2 chef xx


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