Terms like “healthy” or “diet” or “natural” mean little more than the start of controversy these days. We heard them when we were young and in school and we learned of the food pyramid, but as time has gone by, these words are tricky. Natural is little more than a battle of semantics because there are naturally derived foods that are probably no better for your body than illegal substances. What does “no msg added” mean? Does that mean there is already msg, but the current company who is preparing my food didn’t add any additional msg? Maybe I need a law degree to decipher what to eat.
As I am deep in my thoughts while reading Michael Pollan’s book, The Omnivore’s Dilemma, I can very much agree with his description of the way many of us eat in America: having a national eating disorder. One expert tells us kale is amazing and everyone clears the shelves of their pantries and fridges and runs to the supermarket to get it. Acai, gogi berries, olive oil, and whatever else was a trend is often forgotten about and the next new thing is what is marketed to us. I know business is business, but I hate to see people capitalizing on the gullibility of the masses. There’s no way one single power food can sustain us, so why does this keep happening? Does anyone actually care about our long term health?
In social media there are visible trends for health as well, and I believe this is where the snobbery comes in. Can people just post their lunches and leave the snotty comments out? Example:
“Here’s my lunch! Low carb, gluten free, fat free, high fiber, high protein, and I added flaxseed meal to it! I just don’t understand how ANYONE can eat junk food! I eat NOTHING but pure ingredients!”
Do these people seriously not know how they sound?? They sound like someone I would not want to have lunch with, if you ask me! I don’t need a running commentary about what’s happening in your GI tract because you chose to buy your ingredients at Whole Foods! Okay, calming down now…promise. At some point we have a realization that we can eat healthier, work out more, sleep more, etc. That realization isn’t a cartoon light bulb that comes on. Someone has to teach us and we have to be willing to be taught. Therefore, those of us who get it, could be a little kinder to those who haven’t arrived yet. If I had more prankster in me I’d scroll through people’s profile photos and remind them of yesteryear when they were photographed diving into bacon infused pancakes and drinking diet Coke like it was water, but I won’t.
I want you to know what my philosophy is: flexibility and moderation. I can occasionally enjoy a doughnut, and I also don’t have to go on a carrot flush, or a green food diet, or any other trend, though I do believe in cleanses. I simply live well and eat well. There are times when I have to modify, so if I’m in a place where I cannot get the nutrients I prefer, I will just choose the best option I can. I believe in giving the body a chance to have the shape it was designed to be, the strength it was designed to have, and the chance to live a very long time.
You will never hear me tell you the key to weight loss is to simply “get off your @$$ and workout!” because it isn’t. Just like when a person has financial struggles– there is always more to the story. Being over weight or having ailments are just symptoms. I am compassionate for others and their situation and I know it’s a life long journey. While we are on the topic of compassion– my vegetarianism is not about animal cruelty (though I really really love animals and do feel that animal cruelty is awful), but instead it is the diet that works for me as of now. I wear leather and I still eat cheese, and I often wonder if the term “vegan leather” is a great marketing term to get people to feel better about their overpriced fake leather.
I don’t judge people that come to dine with me and have bacon on their plates. Moderation is my logic when deciding what to eat and what not to eat. If I eat too much one day, I load up on the cleanest foods I can find to make up for it. I believe my quality of life has improved just by making more intentional choices– by planning.
So, that’s my philosophy.