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Why Your Nutrition Probably Isn’t Working and What you Can do to Fix It

Updated: Aug 30, 2023

Part 01 of 02: Unpacking the Nutrition Mystery

I always get lots of questions from clients, friends and people generally, about nutrition ideas and nutrition philosophies – things they’ve read about on the internet or seen on their Instagram, new fad diets or belief systems they’ve seen on late night television heard about from their friends or even just stuff they’ve come up with themselves while lying in bed awake at night.

Read along if you want to learn why your nutrition probably isn’t working and what you can do to fix it.

What you Can do to Fix Your Nutrition

There is one trend I’ve noticed over the past 25 years about the questions I am being asked – they’re getting more ridiculous… it seems people are worse informed and more confused now, about the basics of nutrition, than they have ever been. And this is despite there being more solid, well researched scientific facts about what people need to be doing to attain a good healthy well balanced diet.

I think the following words by Dr John Berardi (Precision Nutrition) really illustrate what I’m talking about…

Nowadays, it seems like people are starting to think of nutrition as a "belief system" vs. a legitimate science. In other words, the answer to "What should I eat?" is determined by faith, magical thinking, emotional attachments, or what feels "truthy"... ...rather than on real evidence or the scientific method. And until we fix this, nutrition will only get more confusing, not less. The big problem: Most people start with the Internet. You don't have to look far on Facebook or Instagram to find a charismatic person with a great body and sales pitch offering their own beliefs as a "protocol" or "system". Plus, a quick search on Google for "healthy eating", "healthy diet", or "good nutrition" turns up hundreds of millions of results. Each person or website has its own story: A story about which diet, supplement, food, or nutrition practice someone *believes* is best. Yet nutrition is NOT a belief system. Nutrition is a *science*. Like chemistry and physics, it follows certain principles. And, when you understand these principles, you're able to make the best decisions for yourself (and/or recommendations for others). Base your nutrition choices on FACT, not feelings.

To be clear: We're not "bad" for wanting to follow belief systems. Following a clear set of rules can be a huge relief to those of us that find nutrition confusing or overwhelming. The people who start or share a belief system aren't "bad" either. Most of them are good, genuine, positive people just trying to make other people's lives better. But the problem happens when we base our own health decisions on emotional bias or the rules of a certain philosophy... ...and either ignore what science has to say about the facts, or perhaps have no idea whether such facts even exist. In the end, nutrition science is a big field. We can't know everything, and certainly not all at once. But we CAN start to put the biased beliefs away -- and embrace learning, critical thinking, and evidence-based analysis to every eating decision we make.

Look, the truth is there is no magic bullet when it comes to healthy nutrition, but there are plenty of well-known scientific nutrition facts based on biochemistry and how people react to foods and their environment; and these facts are used to determine sound nutrition principles that if applied well, will help anyone who choses to put in the hard work, yes HARD WORK, (I can hear people slamming their laptops closed or scrolling to the next screen as soon as they read this) achieve their physical success.

In part 02 of this article series I will outline some principles that will no doubt help you along the journey.



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