Personalised nutrition is the key to future health. Our bodies are so different on a genetic level. Nutrition will gradually become personalised through greater understanding of genetic and environmental interactions with food.
Why everybody’s diet should be different…
Now I don’t know about you, but I get confused about all these new fads and trying to figure out which diet is best for me, and I bet you feel the same! Have you thought about going Gluten Free or Dairy Free? Tried to be Vegan or follow the Paleo Diet? Have you considered The Blood Type Diet? or pondered over the 5:2 diet?
We live in a world that is obsessed with food and dieting. We are constantly being told to look a certain way, and every week the media tells us about a new diet to follow. Society tells us what to do; we are told to follow specific trends. This is particularly true for diets that have either been endorsed by a celebrity or promoted by big marketing companies. I’m going to explain why no one particular diet is suitable for everyone. Simply, there is a no one-size-fits-all diet.
Why our bodies react differently to different foods and diets?
We are all so different in so many ways; our hair colour, our skin tone, our likes, and our dislikes, and it is fair to say the same about our metabolism; body composition, anatomy, and our muscle make up and cell structure.
All these factors influence us in many ways, such as our overall health, ability to move and exercise, and how certain foods affect how we feel. No one single way of eating works for everyone. Even at different stages of our lives, different diets affect us in different ways. Some diets will work for some people, at one point in their lives, and will not for others, ever.
Be aware of the conflicting advice out there.
When it comes to nutrition advice, there is so much conflicting advice. We all have different physiological makeups with different dietary needs. No single diet can offer a quick fix.
No one single way of eating works for everyone. Even at different stages of our lives, different diets affect us in different ways.
Just like our bodies are made up of a series of different cells tissues and muscles, our bodies, are also made up of a series of different biochemical makeups.
Different foods are made up of different chemicals, and when we digest these foods, a chemical reaction takes place. These chemical reactions differ from person to person, and I see this with myself and my own twin sister on a daily basis! Food that I like and gives me energy to get through my day causes her to have an upset stomach and cause fatigue.
How to find the right eating regime – for you
We know it’s important to eat a healthy and balanced diet, which includes a variety of nutrients, vitamins and minerals. I know with my own personal experience, and experience I have had with my clients, being given a meal plan and told to follow it for a number of weeks does not work. Changes to our diets need to be sustainable, and more importantly easily understood. If they are not achievable, we will just fall back into our old habits.
So here are my tips to tailor your own perfect diet:
1 .Listen to your body. (Even if it is just for a couple of weeks) This is to help you note exactly what you eat, and how much you eat.
Filling out a food diary can help you tune into your body. By noting how you feel after you eat every meal, how you feel during the day, and how you feel at the end of the day. You may love your dried fruit but they might not love you back. If a certain food causes an abnormal or uncommon reaction such as diarrhoea, it could be a sign to stay away from that food. The way our bodies react to food is your body’s way of telling you that something you are eating isn’t sitting well with you.
2. Forget the rules. (This is different to suggested eating guidelines from The Eatwell Guide UK, for example)
Most diets usually have a ‘do’ and ‘don’t’ list, which usually results in cutting out a major food group. Not every aspect of a diet will be right for you as an individual. By sticking to specific rules, we stop listening to our bod-ies. A specific diet plan such as going vegan might be deemed as healthy by some, but it won’t work for everyone.
Changes to our diets need to be sustainable, and more importantly easily understood. If they are not achievable, we will just fall back into our old habits.
3. Don’t be scared to experiment. Finding which foods your body absorbs and thrives off is very individual. When it comes to diet, we need to be patient and consider trial and error.
Our bodies are personal and very individual. It is important to fuel your body with what works for you. Be flexible with your diet and learn to listen to your own body. Ignore the fads, and I can guarantee you, you will not want to, or need to follow another fad diet regime again!
Tammy is a registered Associate Nutritionist (AU), registered with the Nutrition Society of Australia (NSA). Tammynutrition.wordpress.com