Become the Bruce Lee in your health world
I think by now most people know what they should be eating, there are so many articles online, TV programmes, and alternative media outlining what natural food looks like, that it’s no longer a surprise. From my perspective it’s not that you don’t know the type of food to eat for great health, the more important point for me is that you do not want to eat them regularly enough to leave you being healthy all the time.
We live in a world that tells us we are worth it, and we deserve it, but the things we deserve are linked to eating confectionary and other junk food products. Are you really worth giving yourself heart disease, IBS, or even potentially cancer? Of course, that’s the long-term picture, and at this moment that sensual, sugar rushing chocolate bar is looking far more appealing than the less sexy apple you brought with you and have been carrying around in your bag for the past week.
So if I put fruit, vegetables, lean proteins, fish, nuts, beans, lentils, seeds and oils in front of you I reckon you would be winning the bet to identify them as healthy foods hands down. It’s not rocket science to identify good food, if it comes from the garden it’s good, if it has an extensive shelf life it’s not so good for you. It’s that simple, and I like simplicity.
Bruce Lee has a great quote which I think really applies well to tailoring a diet for yourself. “Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is specifically your own.” Tailoring a diet for yourself starts with giving yourself a good grounding in the techniques of food preparation and natural ingredients, much like practising for martial arts you have to practise and become disciplined in the art of food if you want to truly enable yourself to use food to be and stay healthy. Only by practising the techniques, can you then make them your own, and signature dishes for breakfast, lunch and dinner will start to be a staple in your diet.
Really this is just about preparing a variety of meals with a variety of food ingredients, having a kitchen full of ingredients, and a creating great environment to do this work in. It’s all very well knowing what you should be eating, watching or reading about it, for me it’s all about putting that knowledge into action. I have clients that arrive who have been through a number of different dietary methods, they feel they have failed, I feel that they have succeeded in finding what doesn’t work for them as part of a lifestyle, because so much of these dietary plans are for the short term, and if we don’t integrate them into our life then we will never really become proficient at them. We learn when we play, my mother told me not to play with my food, but I’m in favour of playing with food techniques and types to learn about what you do and don’t like to eat. That’s the way you learn to truly feed yourself, and find out which foods work well for you and which don’t. All the dietary plans are the same underneath, it’s the implementation of them that you need to work on to find out which works for you.
I heard a great analogy from Edward Norton recently and he talked ‘about how in tennis terms a forehand, a backhand, a volley and a serve are to a tennis player the basis of a multitude of methods which just use these very techniques’. It’s no more complicated than that, but knowing those techniques well and which techniques work for you in daily life is what makes the difference.
Can I ask you to remove the belief that any one methodology of diet or health holds the key to resolving your health issues or that any one thing is the panacea of them, there are so many things that will and could make a difference and often they are using the same key things. A clean diet, which is balanced to suit you and that could be different season to season, from day to day, from month to month, doing what you love and have a passion for, relaxation, laughter recuperation, meditation or taking time for simplicity, breathing exercises, and the right exercise. These are the equivalent of your tennis techniques. Become familiar with a range of the ‘tennis shots’ to use a metaphor that you practise and enjoy having in your life, we use that which we enjoy.