Sounds stupid, right? Delicious food is delicious. But it’s an important point to make because I, like many other people, mistakenly believed that in order to eat healthy, I had to get used to bland foods. That was not only my greatest fear, but honestly, led to most of my failures in the past when I tried to adopt a healthy lifestyle. Mostly, it was due to my own lack of knowledge; healthy foods don’t have to be bland, yet most Western diets that focused on weight loss tended to be very bland which led to palate fatigue and failure to maintain a healthier lifestyle.
The popularity of the Mediterranean Diet helped change some people’s minds about what a healthy diet could be: delicious and healthy at the same time. I never fully adopted it as my daily lifestyle, but I did eat a lot of Mediterranean food, and yes, it’s delicious, filling, and best of all, healthy. It’s this exposure to healthy food that enabled me to consider a healthier diet, and to convince my wife that she should give it a try with me.
It’s interesting to me that we can’t eat the same thing, day in and day out, without getting tired of it. My dad told me a story about when he first came to the United States, and his aunt asked him what he wanted to eat. My dad told her, “Chicken! I love chicken! I could eat it every day!” He said that because he hadn’t had many opportunities to eat chicken as a refugee in Austria after fleeing the Hungarian Revolution in 1956. You can guess what my great-aunt made for my dad: chicken. The problem was that she not only made it for him that night, but for every lunch and dinner for the following six months. He got so tired of chicken that for the rest of his life, unless it was every great once in a while, he avoided chicken like the plague.
My current diet is the Paleo Diet, but I have been incredibly successful with Whole30 and Keto diets. Right now, I’ve introduced intermittent fasting, but that’s more to combat my holiday eating than anything else. What I love about Paleo is that the foods are varied, delicious, and healthy. As long as I eat regular portions, I will either maintain my weight or even lose weight. The only problem I have is that so much Paleo food is amazing that it’s easy to over-eat.
One thing that doesn’t happen anymore, however, is being tempted by foods like breads, pizza, pasta, or other grains. It took a while for those foods to lose their luster for me, but while I did have some pizza last month with my soldiers, and yes, it was delicious, it doesn’t hold a candle to my wife’s Paleo Ropa Vieja, or even her Chorizo and Beef Meatloaf. It became easy to get away from the bad foods and to embrace the good ones when they taste so darned good.
Don’t get stuck in the baked chicken breast rut. Take a look at Whole30 and Paleo. Look at Keto. Look at Atkins. There are lots of options out there that fit your taste and lifestyle, and they will be much more effective at you being successful in the long-term.