Health – what does it mean to you?

You know what I’m really tired of hearing?
”If you are studying nutrition, are you really gonna eat that?”

One thing people have to understand is that everyone sees health differently.
For some people health is looking good. For others it is going on the newest diet, being vegan, living dairy and gluten free, being as strong as possible, and for some people it is, sadly, not to eat at all.
We are all different.
I am studying nutrition and I promise you that when I graduate, my mates and I, we are not going to have the same opinions about health, even though we’ve studied the exact same thing.

For me health is moderation, in all its definitions, shapes and colors.

I’ve come such a long way to actually accept the fact that it is okay for me to eat that ice cream without guilt.
Before I had to call my mum just to get it approved that it was okay for me to have potato chips.

Since then, now, to me – all of me matter. My entire being. Not just my looks. I eat that ice cream because it makes me feel good, but then you should also see my fridge because it’s full of all this awesomeness that I like to call veggies! I eat very well to me, I may not be super healthy to you.

Instead of thinking ”this is going to make me fat”, I think ”how is this contributing to my health today?”. If it makes me happy/satisfied, yes, it will contribute to my well-being. And some days I just ask myself ”Am I in the mood for something sweet today?” No, then I won’t eat it – at that point they’re just empty calories that are not giving me any nutrients that my body needs, or contributing to my well-being.
Without this relationship with myself I might end up binge eating, as I am restricting myself from having something that I really want.

I attended a lecture a couple of months ago where a dietitian was talking about Health at Every Size, or the non-diet approach, which you know that I strongly support.
Anyhow, he said:
”One day you really want chocolate. But no, you’re not allowed to eat it as it is unhealthy. So you eat some almonds. The next day you are still craving that chocolate, but you have some more almonds and an apple. The third day you eat some almonds, an apple, and then some more almonds, then you end up eating the entire chocolate bar.”
This was a very clever thing for him to point out.
It is not as equally easy for everyone to stay ”healthy”, to ”hide” themselves from what they’re craving (I just picture myself running around in the grocery store with chocolate bars chasing me).
So imagine if you would have eaten that chocolate the first day? Maybe then you only would have had a little piece, instead of the entire thing. Then you wouldn’t have eaten those Extra calories that the almonds and the apples contributed with.
I wouldn’t say it works like this for everyone, but think about. Isn’t the things you restrict yourself from the ones you want so badly?

Just have in mind what health is to you, to your best friend or to your partner. It’s probably not the same.

To be honest, I’m ALWAYS eating when someone asks me what I’m studying (often sweets). Cause let’s face it, food is life.
So let me eat my God damn crepe!

Picture: Sara Ismar

By giving to someone else you are giving to yourself

Last month I started doing volunteer work for Meals on Wheels in Coolum and I am loving it!
When I came home on Monday after a couple of hours in a car visiting cute elderly people (with even cuter dogs!!) I was in so much pain in my neck, but I was in such a happy state of mind because I gave something to someone else – food, a talk, some cuddles with a dog. It was absolutely a lovely feeling.

I spoke to my aunt a couple of weeks ago and I asked her what she wanted to do now when she had retired, and she said she might wanted to volunteer at an animal rescue but she seemed a little bit too insecure to actually understand that she can do it! Organisations are always looking for more people to help out – animals, op-shops, Meals on Wheels, mentors. And if you have the option to go overseas to do volunteer work, do it! You get so much from giving to someone else.

I watched this Ted talk the other day that really inspired me to do give a helping hand to the society.
Earlier this week I was going to my friend’s place, a walk for about 15 minutes, and I decided to pick up trash along the way. So I walked on one side of the road on my way there, and then the other side of the road on my way home. So much glass, plastic, and strings that can hurt our planet and the creatures living here. (PROCRASTINATION AT ITS FINEST!)

The other day I bought a coffee token at Scandic Café in Maroochydore, which will go to a person that might not be that fortunate to afford all the things that you and I might afford every day – a coffee.

So look around you. How can you give to someone else today? Or how can you help the environment? It might not be something big. A smile at that neighbor that you never see talking to anyone, clean out your closet and give to an op-shop. A person might only have a $50 bill to pay for their bus trip, and the bus driver won’t accept it. Is it possible that you can provide this person with $3 so that they can go on with their day like they planned?
There are so any ways we can help each other, and why not start today 🙂

365 Give

Your body is capable of amazing things

Since I was 12 years old I’ve hated my body. Much like every other person.
I’m too fat – my love handles are too big, my hair is too fragile, my legs are too short. The only thing I’ve liked is my boobs. Well, at least since the age of 18.

I remember in sixth grade when my mum and I had a meeting with my teacher and I said that I was feeling left out by the other girls and she asked me why. My answer was “I am too fat”. WTF?!
I don’t even know if I believed it or not, but back then – I knew that if I was fat, there was a reason for me to be left out. Because I didn’t look like everyone else. And that was easier to face than the fact that I was weird. (Which I’m totally okay with now by the way). But where did I get this from? First of all, that I was overweight? And second of all, that there was something wrong with being overweight? Like that was an okay reason for being left out?

I study nutrition, and even if I’ve been taught the information to why the body needs the food we eat – all this information blows out the window that one second my brain starts to go on and on about how “I am too fat.”
But now I say I’ve had enough!
My body is a freaking powerful machine. I got hit by a car in 40km/h and here I am! I’m like freaking wonder woman or something. I’m not saying that I’m immortal. But why do I put all my energy into feeding my body with negative thoughts about how it looks instead of loving it?
My body is awesome.
It’s been there for me through my 27 years here on earth. It walks, swims, breathes, smiles, cries, and beats, “plays the guitar” (at least that’s my intention), lifts, kicks, dance.
When did I start let my looks define who I am?

From now on I’m treating You with love, kindness, respect and gratitude. Everything that You deserve. Everything that I deserve.
I am a soul, I have a body. But the body is one of our biggest supporters through life. So I will support You.


Photo: Isabelle Thelning 

My second year at Uni.

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Tomorrow it’s time – after a break of almost four months, my second year at uni starts!!
I can’t believe I’ve been here for over a year now, and it feels really good.

I’m feeling so freaking motivated about going back to Uni. I even got my motivating pens. My friend asked me; Penny, what exactly is a motivating pen?
Well, wouldn’t you like to know.
This year we’re gonna go more in to the nutrition part, finally. When people have asked me what we’ve learned this last year I haven’t really known what to answer. The periodic table? Cause it was mostly science my first year.
This semester I’m doing Food studies, Principles of nutrition, Introduction to behavioral health and Challenges to mental health. So exciting!!

And I’m gonna keep my motivating attitude throughout this semester. And I do this by surrounding me with an awesome group of people, planning my timetable wisely (well, let’s see how that goes), focusing on things that makes me happy. And of course, my motivating pens.

I’m gonna keep you posted about how everything goes.
Until then, do what makes you happy. Why else would you do it?