Monday, July 4, 2011

Independence From Average

by Kris Pitcher

I recently heard a statistic stating the average American consumes 570 more calories per day today, than in 1977. We certainly have more access to more food. Our portion sizes have grown and it's no wonder we have an epidemic on our hands.

The USDA, according to their general survey, claims the average American consumes 4,270 calories per day. Now, I know most of us are not average.

An extra 570 calories per day will run you just shy of 4,000 extra calories in a week. One flabby pound per week my friends. I know I'm capable of doing that on a vacation, or even a long weekend...I've done it!

When I go to the grocery store, I'm reminded how very not average I am. Looking into shopping carts around me, I see a world of items that never make it into my home. A sea of choices I haven't made for years. I also realize I am the minority.

The numbers are staggering though, and if we think about the number of calories a typical active woman in her 40's should eat - between 1,600 to 2,000 depending on how active she is - that is way below "average". It's no wonder we are struggling.

Journaling where you are is a great place to start. You can't make a plan if you don't know where you are starting from. Once you know how many calories you are taking in on average, you can make changes. The reality is most people are moving through their lives blind to it. Numb to it. For a lot of different reasons.

Now that restaurants are required to provide nutrient information, it's certainly more clear and easy to make choices. Hopefully this is a step in the right direction. Education is key, as is having the presence of mind to care about what you're putting in your body is a major leap too.

Find Independence from average in this area of your life. I know I have, and one by one...maybe we'll make a difference.

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