Do I Indulge In Unhealthy Food?

Many people ask me, ” Jess, do you ever indulge. Do you ever just eat an ice-cream? ” I want you all to know… Yes!! Of course I do! I just don’t post the pictures that much because at the end of the day…I am preaching to enjoy healthy foods.

In fact I believe indulging in your favorite foods can actually be helpful to your health.

I believe in the 80/20 approach.  80% of my diet is very clean and the other 20% I indulge in moderation. I believe being truly “healthy” and building a good relationship with your body comes with allowing yourself to indulge in foods- without the guilt and without the counting of carbs/calories. Deprivation only leads to drastic diet habits and will cause you to have a complicated relationship with your body.

BUT my rule is… to indulge in something I love and to only feel GOOD thoughts about it.  I could never have done this in my past. I used to eat something ‘naughty’ and think about it for days. The guilt would eat me up. This is not a way of living. I often go on about how ‘stressing about food’ can actually be worse for your health, than the ‘bad food’ itself.

This weekend I enjoyed 2 glasses of red wine and some real Italian Gelato. I am confident my weight wont creep up and I know I will not suddenly endure a nutrient deficiency.  My body actually enjoys the break from my clean health routine.  I enjoy being able to watch myself eat these foods mindfully and gratefully. I love to be able to eat 3-4 pieces of chocolate and feel it is enough because I know my body does not need more. I now have enough love for my body to LISTEN to when it is enough.  Now, I no longer ‘crave’ foods and I absolutely never feel deprived. I believe this is the key to a good relationship with our bodies.

So does this mean I’m saying we can go crazy and eat all the junk foods we crave. Hell no. Healthy indulgence means being able to eat these foods in limited amounts. If you have enough respect for your body- you won’t want to fill it with too much junk. So it comes down to working on the love for your body.

I often advise to eat 1-2 indulgent MEALS a week.

If you are on a clean life journey- you will start to notice that so many healthy foods and alternatives actually taste better than the traditional unhealthy versions. I am passionate about creating healthier versions of the unhealthy foods so many of us crave.  Such as my carrot cake pancakes J- I believe they taste better than any carrot cake!! But I am also aware than taste buds have to adapt slowly to be able to enjoy and appreciate healthy foods.

So be kind to yourselves. Choose a favorite indulgent meal. Sit and eat it mindfully and give thanks. State positive affirmations like, “This food will be good for me”, “My body knows how to break this food down.” This often really helps because our thoughts manifest physically. Remember stress will cause the blood to divert away from the digestive system and therefore when you stress about the food- it is likely you wont break it down well.

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  • Andrea

    🙂

  • Jessica Shea

    Hey Jess,

    I really like this blog – I really believe it’s true. You really do start to; 1. NOT crave foods and 2. feel satisfied when you do eat junk food that you really want.
    I admittedly eat quite badly on a Saturday or a Sunday and the next day the last thing I feel like is junk food! I can’t think of anything worse! Also, there is nothing worse than one of your friends being a nuisance on the weekend when you all go for a wine because they are “dieting”. Love your work on this site & instagram! Thank you for inspiration and healthy food ideas 🙂

    Jess xx

  • Susan

    Excellent!
    I love the 80/20 approach and I love that you talk about being at peace with indulging in a favorite meal. A healthy relationship with food it so important. So many people suffer to “look” good and are unhappy inside. This article is excellent advise, and it is good to learn that you are not 100% stringent. It makes it easier to believe in what you teach. Thank you, Jessica. I love following you.

  • Marion

    I really love this blog. I used to have real body image issues and I sometimes they still rear their ugly head but I am much better at taming the beast within. I love sweets, not all of them, but I definitely have a sweet tooth. So cutting things out completely is a no go for me because eventually I break and then I scarf down a candy bar or two. Not good. Moderation is my savior. It keeps my sweet-beast at bay. I eat clean most of the time and like you opt for the healthy version of food not because I have to but because I feel sooooo much better eating clean. My problem is still the guilt though. I feel guilty. Even though I know that one indulgence will not undo me. Some days I feel like I sound like an addict. One bite and I turn into a monster. Will that guilt ever o away? I sure hope so, and listening to you I see that it can be done. Thank you for being honest and approachable.
    Namaste,
    Marion

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