How to Eat like a Yogi #2: Go at your own pace

meditation-428382_960_720

Source: Pixabay

Hope you all liked the previous post from the new ‘How to Eat like a Yogi’ posts! If you haven’t seen it, have a look here.

Our second little tip relates closely to the first, because it is still about listening to your body.

#2: Go at your own pace

We are all constructed differently, which means  we learn at different speeds and some may be able to achieve more while others less.

Important thing is to understand there’s no problem with learning faster or slower than others, it doesn’t make you worse or more special either way.

Sometimes we might not be aware, but certain words can make children anxious about what they eat, for example…

When little Tommy hears Aunt Sally say: “My girl started eating cabbage when she was two and

9259372650_4491fcd013_b

Source: Flickr

now she eats all kinds of vegetables”, he might feel that he is worse off by not liking cabbage even though he’s already 4 years old.

Focus on the positives and the improvements. For example, talk about how little Tommy originally was scared of fruits but now strawberries and apples are his best friend.

OR, talk about something else (such as school, friends, their favourite TV show). Remember, we don’t want to make too much of a big deal out of food.

Let children develop at their own pace, and try to refrain from comparing two children. Every child is unique and should be treasured for who they are 🙂

-R.L.

How to Eat like a Yogi #1: Listen to your body

5567042224_e87cd87d9e_b

Source: Flickr

Firstly, I must state that this is not a ‘detox’ or ‘diet’ blog post. I’m trying to share a way of approaching food which I have learned from my yoga practice.

What is a yogi? 

A yogi is a person who practices yoga.

So, how do you eat like a yogi? 

In short, eating like a yogi means approaching food in a relaxed and positive manner.

No strict guidelines like you MUST NOT eat something, or HAVE TO eat something.

I’ll be splitting some main points into several posts, so you can slowly think about them and maybe apply them in your family to see if they work out.

#1 Listen to your body

In yoga, there is no right or wrong. Because the person next to you can do a handstand, it

child-903455_960_720

Source: Pixabay

doesn’t mean you should be pressured to do so in any way.

Teach your children to listen to their internal cues, such as how hungry they are, when they are full, whether they are ready for a new food. If Max, whose sitting next to your child likes to eat carrots and beans, he/she by no means needs to be pressured to eat those foods too.

Everyone is unique and will feel different everyday. Maybe today you can do the splits, but tomorrow your muscles might not feel comfortable to do so, and that is OK.

Today, little Tommy may feel like potatoes, and tomorrow he may not even want to see them. Tell your child that it’s OK and it’s good that he is learning to listen to his body.

Remember that it’s alright if your child’s preferences change around and their hungry today and not tomorrow. The best skill they can learn is to listen to their body and do what they feel is right.

-R.L.

[Video] What’s the best diet?

ANSWER: One that you and your kids enjoy

The truth is that every person is different. We all have different preferences, needs, likes and dislikes.

What’s the point if I cut carbs and then crave them badly everyday, feeling guilty every time I eat spaghetti?

Pressure, anxiety and guilt is your worst enemy.

There’s no need to ban anything from your diet or your child’s diet. Just remember ‘everything in moderation‘.

If your kids want to eat cake or ice-cream once it a while, that’s completely fine! Enjoy it! It’s all part of a healthy lifestyle.

Being healthy is not just about diet and exercise, it’s also about being happy and loving yourself for who you are.

 

Teach your kids to love themselves by loving yourself.

-R.L.

Stop ‘Weight Talk’

pexels-photo-139106-large

Source: Pexels

“She’s so skinny, is she not eating enough?”

“I’ve been gaining weight, I probably need to start dieting”

“My thighs are massive!”

Have you ever said something like this to yourself or someone else? 

Any comments, to yourself or to others, to suggest problems with weight are considered ‘weight talk‘.

When we say these things, those little ears are listening and those observant eyes are watching. This is how they developing standards of ‘good’ and ‘bad’.

If their mother or aunt constantly talks about dieting and how huge her arms are, children will begin to realise that huge arms are ‘bad’.

If their mum comments on a skinny friend on how good they look, they will grow up thinking that being ‘thin’ is good and will try to live up to those (unrealistic) standards (possibly using unhealthy methods).

young people [are]…overexposed to unrealistic body shapes

Dr Newton

What are the facts of weight obsession?

  • Body dissatisfaction – 7 out of 10 preschool aged children are unhappy with how they look, preferring a ‘thin’ body. 
  • Eating disorderskids with parents that talk about dieting or diet are more likely to diet in the future and develop eating disorders.
  • Fear of food – kids can end up trying to avoid food groups and developing anxiety. This reduction in variety can cause selective eating (or increase the severity).

The problem is we focus too much on WEIGHT and APPEARANCE and too little on MENTAL and PHYSICAL health.

If your child is eating happily, developing a good relationship with food, and your family doctor has no concerns about their health, it doesn’t really matter if they look slightly thinner or fatter than other children.

They are MENTALLY and PHYSICALLY healthy!

What do we need to do?

What’s important is that we teach children about ‘mindful eating’ and listening to their internal cues.

They need to learn how to enjoy eating and consume all foods in moderation. NOT judging their self-worth by their weight or how they look.

To everyone out there: try to be more conscious of what you are saying around children. It’s not easy, but if we make the effort, we can minimise the long-term impacts on our children.

*If you’re interested in more tips on developing a mindful eater, check out Baby Guru Nutrition, I just love their values on eating and nutrition!