Monday, February 20, 2012

Is Your Diet Healthy?

by Kris Pitcher

Here's something interesting. In a recent consumer survey, 90% of Americans reported eating a "healthy diet". Yet close to 64% of Americans are obese.

So, 9 out of 10 people think they are eating healthy. And 6 of those 10 people would be considered over weight or obese by American standards. Quite a disconnect.

The disconnect, in my opinion (and I'm always good about telling you when something is my opinion), is about education around food choices, portion distortion, and eating to heal.

First, and this really is a politically charged issue, we've been educated to eat around the governmentally provided food guide pyramid. I've written a blog about the history of the guide which you might want to read for reference.

The food guide really has set us up for an insulin charged, carbohydrate heavy lifestyle which hasn't served us well. Telling the average American they should consume 10 servings of grains per day was not smart. My opinion.

We supersize everything in America. More is better, the bigger the better! If I'm not getting a huge portion at a restaurant, well I'm getting ripped off. Right? We've filled our plates and over time our portions have grown out of sight.

Finally, we eat to heal. We don't have the mindset of eating to fuel, we eat to fix things, to celebrate things, and to fill voids. We blindly fill our bodies with foods we hope will fill our saddness, fears, lonliness and longings. It never does. We are left feeling out of control, and guilt ridden.

So, it's a slow process by which we've fooled ourselves into thinking we are eating "healthy". We don't know what we don't know. If we learn our nutritional information from marketers we're in for bad news. If we learn it from the multi billion dollar diet industry and every diet book that turns out we are also left confused.

Go back to my recent blog about eating clean. Eating clean is eating healthy. Most Americans do not eat clean. It's hard, it takes planning, preparation, and comittment to a certain set of values. It takes going the extra mile to make sure you're fueling to meet your goals.

But there is no fooling ourselves if we simply look around during a trip to the grocery store. If we look in the grocery carts at the items people have's no wonder they are in the 64% of obese Americans.

Pay attention to your choices. Look at your portions and don't feel like you have to eat to keep up with others or to finish what's put in front of you. Find ways to deal with your emotions and to confront your emotional eating. Truly be part of the 90% and eat a healthy diet.

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