In our modern age, the speed at which we concluded tasks has evolved rapidly, leading to an instant gratification epidemic. With the emerging health crisis leaving many American’s with debilitating life-long injuries, it’s no wonder why people believe that hard work will lead to an ultimate failure. I learned this lesson the hard way while embarking on my entrepreneurial journey in the health and fitness sphere. My in-depth conversations with friends, family, and clients alike have given me a unique perspective regarding the instant gratification philosophy. Put simply, if you believe in the get-rich philosophy of bettering your health, kindly click away, but if you intend to make a positive, long-lasting impact on your health, this column is for you. Below are my keys to combating the instant gratification health philosophy.

I am astounded by their drive and determination level in my experience with clients of all walks of life. Had they been adequately educated on the effects of long-term health improvement rather than the get fit quick way of fitness, their results would mimic their actions. We, as fitness educators, tend to forget that our education systems are not equipped to teach a health-based curriculum past the five food group discussions. For instance, most clients concerned about losing weight are more concerned with exercise than sleep. This points to a deeper issue that leads to once-promising clients turning to dangerous health fads to overcompensate. Instant gratification in the fitness and health profession has become an illusion for both clients and professionals alike. 

One of the biggest illusions that health and fitness educators have been pushing for decades is the Keto Diet. The Keto Diet has been praised for almost 50 years for its quick weight loss results. According to Harvard Health Publishing, we have solid evidence that an extremely low carbohydrate eating diet works for children who have epilepsy. However, the safety of following the Keto Diet remains questionable for hopefuls who are looking for sustainable, long-term weight loss. Taking on the keto mindset creates instant issues with dieters, such as sleep problems, nausea, constipation, and potential worsened kidney issues.

What can be the solution to the instant gratification philosophy that has plagued generation after generation? Mindset and education are the keys to facing this epidemic head-on, and we can start by doing these three things:

  1. Awareness is key. Awareness is always the first step to fixing a problem. Many of us become so habituated where it becomes second nature.
  2. Education is vital. Learn to shift focus on long-term gratification. When there becomes a shift in perspective from short-term to long-term, it is easier to realize that fad diets are not truly sustainable.
  3. Perspective is needed. We need to reframe the idea of control.

Fitness professionals, we are in control of what we teach clients. However, weight-loss hopefuls are also in control of their weight-loss journeys. 

Put simply, remember that instant gratification is an illusion, and we have the power to see behind the smoke screens and mirrors. Lastly, let’s focus more on quality versus quantity. Do we need to eliminate carbohydrates from our daily diets? The answer is no. Let’s focus on incorporating complex carbohydrates into our daily lives instead. Even posing small goals can help with focusing on quality. Instead of having a sugary drink, replace it with water or try to serve vegetables with every meal. Keeping these tips in mind, you too will combat the instant gratification health conception.