Where and when did we go so far off the mark when it comes to nutrition? And let’s face it…we ARE off the mark. Obesity is at epidemic levels as are the “lifestyle diseases” like diabetes, heart disease, and even cancer. There are many reasons we are in this mess and yes, the food industry holds much of the blame but that’s a whole story on its own. Let’s look instead at what we can control. Let’s look at our roles in this thing.
In our society, we are enticed and excited about the ideas of taste, convenience, and quantity with little regard for quality. Food labels are pretty frightening these days. A lot of what we eat is full of chemicals, preservatives, and things that have even been proven to be bad for us. Things like trans fats, MSG, high fructose corn syrup, etc. But guess what? We eat it anyway. Many times with the reasoning that “a little bit won’t hurt me” but unfortunately, it is not just a little bit. Instead, it is often at every single meal and snack. Even though many of us love certain fruits and vegetables and eat them frequently, we are more than cancelling them out with the bad stuff we are eating. The scales need to be tipped in the other direction.
It is time to get back to basics, to eat the food that was put on this planet for the purposes of sustaining life. I guarantee this doesn’t include man made fats like margarine, artificial sweeteners, factory manufactured chemicals, flavor enhancers, etc. What we need to focus on is fresh fruits, vegetables, high quality meats, and fats (like olive oil, coconut oil, nuts, seeds, etc).
One of the first things people should do when looking to make dietary changes is to keep a week long food journal. This should be very detailed including not only what you are eating but when and even the feelings associated with eating. This will allow you to see a true picture of what your current diet looks like. You must be honest with yourself and expose your weak areas in order to make change.
After analyzing your food journal, try adding more natural, whole foods. Do the best you can to eliminate pre-packaged, processed foods (man made) and choose fresh, and nature-made foods. Continue to keep your journal and be proud of your successes. If you would like an electronic copy of a food journal, a list of man vs. nature foods, or a food resource guide just contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org I’ve got loads of resources for you.
In the newsletters to come, we will chip away at making the transitions in nutrition easy and painless. I will be including recipes, health tips, and basically things that have worked for my family! Changes won’t happen overnight but keep inspired to make changes not only for yourself but for the people that love and depend on you.