Thursday, September 1, 2011

It's All About the Hair, but Don't Forget About the BODY

I have been fortunate enough to have never struggled with weight.  The problem with that is I never really concerned myself with what I ate because I associated diets and meal planning with the need to lose weight.  I never thought of it as being something I needed to be conscious of for health reasons.  I ate out a lot, but I tried to select healthy options . . . at least half of the time :-)  I knew it was better to cook at home, but I had every excuse in the book why I couldn't do it.

"I Don't Have Time"
I have a productively busy schedule and so I'm always on the go, but in spite of that, somehow I manage to have time to take very good care of my hair, which is extremely time consuming.  With my schedule, healthy eating would require advance planning and I honestly believed that I couldn't plan ahead for more than a day or two.  However, whenever I knew my schedule would be ridiculous, I managed to plan ahead to put my hair up in twists so my hair would be protected while I dealt with my hectic schedule.  So I had to be honest with myself and ask if I can make time for my hair, why can't I make time for my health?

"It's Too Expensive"
It's true that it's more expensive to eat natural and healthy foods, but is that a valid reason for me to continue to eat crap? Although I don't like paying more money for my natural hair products, I know that I get better results when using them and I know that it's better for my hair so I don't question it.  I've also rationalized that I'm actually saving money since I do my own hair and don't have to pay a hairstylist and I don't wear weaves and braids (you know how expensive that stuff is!).  However, it's interesting how I never rationalized that healthy food is better for my body and therefore worth the cost.  I didn't apply the same logic realizing that eating healthy food is less costly than medication or doctor bills, so technically I would be saving money while enjoying a healthier life.

"I Don't Know How"
I don't know a lot about nutrition and I really never took the time to learn how to cook.  On the other hand, I didn't know anything about natural hair either, but I learned.  Not only did I learn, but now I'm doctoring up my leave-in conditioners, mixing up my own moisturizing spritz, using essential oils appropriately diluted with carrier oils and testing pH balances.  If I can do all that . . .well, you see where I'm going :-)

Recently, I began learning how to cook and focusing on making meals made with fresh vegetables. Also, since I have been having some blood pressure issues, I eliminated salt from any meal that I cook and I've been religiously checking the sodium content of everything I buy and make.  It's amazing how much sodium is in most of the things I was eating!  I was reading the ingredient list of every hair product I purchased, but I really wasn't paying a lot of attention to the nutritional value of the food that I was eating although it was clearly labeled.

Benefits are internal & external 
I have even incorporated some vegetarian dishes into my meal plan.  I can't say that I will definitely become a vegetarian, but I was pleasantly surprised that many of the items I prepared were healthy and actually tasted good too.  The results?  My blood pressure has been slowly dropping and my energy level has dramatically increased and I feel great! Now when I hit the gym, I have more energy to get the most out of my hour.

If I keep this up, I can only imagine how I will feel and what I would look like by this time next year!

~Loving Me Naturally (mind, body and soul)


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  2. I like! I recently came to the same realization. It is refreshing to see someone writing about taking care of the inside as well as the outside. :)

  3. Thanks for commenting! @tcaesar - I think it's easy to focus on the outside because that's what everyone sees, what people will comment on and what they will react to. I've fallen into that trap over the years too. However, I think it's a beautiful thing to realize that they're both connected. If you take care of the inside, it shows on the outside in multiple ways.

  4. I like your blog and believe me, you are lucky to not have to worry about your weight, because I stuggle with mine since 20 years now. I also started a blog, it is something that I always wanted to do but I was too afraid because I think that maybe nobody will interest of what I have to say. I am also not ready to put my own pictures cause I always hated to see myself, I am not really photogenic like you. So in my blog it is only my you can see cause it the only part of my body that I like.

  5. @Minasek - Thanks for commenting and I'm sooo sorry for the long delay. Life got hectic for a minute! Thanks for the compliment, but I have to admit I've always have had some issues with my physical appearance (and I still do). I think it's human nature to look at ourselves and focus on the flaws rather than the positive things. I am very fortunate to have never struggled with weight. I've struggled with other things and I've tried to change what I can and accept what I cannot change. I think a big part of what you see in my pictures is a level of confidence I never had before. I believe it starts within and overflows outwards. All the best to you. I'm going to follow your blog so I can be there to see the first pics you post showing more than your hair ;-)