Restrictive calorie-counting diets can make you feel worse. Why? Because if anything, we are eating too less calories to facilitate mood-enhancing chemicals in the brain such as serotonin, dopamine and endorphins to name just a few. In most cases, diets make people feel like crap, because they’re restricting the intake of food in a way that lowers their mood state.
The alternative to calorie diets is low GI / carbohydrate, but again, it’s essential not to go overboard and completely cut out carbs all together. Your brain needs sugar, in the form of L-glutamine, which you receive from carbs. The key is to find the RIGHT carbs in the form of whole grains and starchy vegetables like sweet potato and carrot.
In any eating program it’s essential to maintain a BALANCED diet. Balance seems to be the bit that gets missed, yet it’s the most important part. People often go real hard, and completely cut out carbs (don’t EVER do this, it is bad for your blood sugar and your mood), or they go on 500 calorie detox programs that are simply not sustainable.
I believe it’s important to eat, drink and be merry – enjoy the odd cake, have your coffee if you love it, but consume food in a balanced way. Find enjoyment in what you eat and savour every mouthful instead of shovelling it in whilst driving/texting/watching TV etc. Mindfully eating will make you enjoy your food more and eat less of it.