Many of you have shared your personal health journeys with me, so I’ve decided that it’s time I finally share mine… I was an overweight teen. I wasn’t always that way though. As a young girl, I was very healthy, because all I ate was my parents’ home-cooked Asian meals. It was when I entered adolescence that I started gaining excessive weight. As a teen, I didn’t have to bring lunch to school everyday and I didn’t have to have dinner with my family every night. I often ate out with friends at fast food places or ordered take-out. I did notice my weight increasing, but it didn’t really bother me oddly enough. I was too busy with my studies to be self-conscious and to worry about my body. Ask anyone who knew me in high school and he/she would tell you that I was your stereotypical “Asian nerd”, lol.
Looking back, I now realize that my poor dietary habits affected me more on the inside than out. For instance, I had terrible sleeping patterns. I was tired and had very low energy in the afternoons, but then I was wide awake in the evenings. I also ran out of breath everytime I walked up a flight or two of stairs. I felt stressed all the time too. Compared to how I feel today, I was a mess and I felt absolutely miserable, but I never once considered changing my diet.
It wasn’t until I took an elective Nutritional Science course in university during my freshman year that I became fascinated with the huge impact of nutrition on well-being. Being a total Science geek growing up, I loved learning about how the different nutrients in food affect people on a cellular level. It made me look at my own diet and encouraged me to make healthy lifestyle changes. Within a few weeks, I started noticing major improvements in my health. I had so much more energy throughout the day, my skin and hair became healthier-looking, my mood was much happier, and I went from XL to XS in clothing. When I saw how just nutrition alone healed so many of my own health issues, I decided to switch career paths from medicine to nutrition. I wanted to show others how nutrition can be their medicine, as it was mine. Fast forward to today, I am a Registered/Certified Nutritionist.
Since leaving my unhealthy teenage habits behind, I’ve gone back to my healthy childhood habits. The picture above is of me and my younger brother picking strawberries at a farm. We ate more strawberries than we picked for our basket, lol. Even though I was so little in this picture, I remember those Ontario strawberries being so fresh and juicy. I didn’t know it then, but the vitamin C and many phytonutrients in strawberries were providing me with many cardiovascular benefits at that age.
For those wondering exactly what I did to become healthier, I just made sure that I was getting the right nutrients in the right amounts from my diet everyday and I was always trying to stay as active as possible. There were no fad diets, extreme cleanses, food deprivation, or crazy workouts. It was all about eating real whole foods (none of that processed/refined junk) and about nourishing my body with nutrients from food.
When you’re well-nourished, you will no longer crave the junk, because your body will be in balance biochemically. You will also be more in tune with your body (which means no more emotional eating!). For those asking for more recipes on my blog, I’m on it! Stay tuned. I hope this blog post helped/encouraged at least one person to make healthy lifestyle changes.
P.S. I know I said a few blog posts back that I would update my blog daily, but I’m getting very busy. I will definitely still try to update it daily, but it may be every other day or so. Sorry about that!