Wednesday, September 14, 2011

How to Eat (Really)

I'm a Dr. Oz fan, and not because Oprah told me to be one. I like him because of YOU: On a Diet, the book that opened my eyes to the simplicity of clean eating and helped me realize that if I just ate fruit, veggies, lean meats, and whole grains with simple ingredients (and as few as possible) I would never have to worry about whether to eat low fat, low carb, low protein, according to my blood type or my ancestry or my aura or any of the rest of it.  I had clogged my brain with so much confusing mumbo jumbo that I actually thought that fruit made me fat. For real, y'all, I thought that eating apples and pears was making me fat.  

That's nuts. 

When the latest issue of Time landed in my mailbox touting an article by Dr. Oz called, "What to Eat Now," I opened it with apprehension. I didn't want to find that he had somehow managed to turn plain old healthy eating into a new "diet," reducing the concept of healthy eating to packaged meal plans and a quick-slim gimmick.

"Clean eating" has become a buzzword these days, but it's really just eating. It's tempting to package it like a diet, but it's not one. It's just healthy eating, the way we should have been doing all this time!  Then it dawned on me: clean eating is a simple concept, but in the world we live in today, it's not always simple to employ. Mixed up in all of the weight loss messages that swirl around us each day, the simple concept of eating natural foods seems almost too simple. 

"Just eating," is easier said than done, I know. We've been conditioned to stop thinking about what we eat and robotically follow a plan that someone else has created for us. That's what makes clean eating so hard - it relies on us actually learning how to eat. I've been traveling that road for a long time, and while I've made great strides in portion control, learning about healthier ingredients, dumping processed foods, and understanding cravings, I still struggle with things like moderation.  It's a simple concept, but not simple to do.

Luckily, he didn't go all Hollywood with clean eating, he kept it real, nice and boring. :) I've searched the internet to find a link to the article that I can share with you but apparently they want you to buy it for yourself. It's worth it!  A healthier life is within your reach, you just have to take the initiative to remind yourself how simple it can really be.

Check it out and make some clean-eating swaps this week.  And, whether you're a simple eater or simply eating, get out there and get healthy!


Ellen said...

"That's what makes clean eating so hard - it relies on us actually learning how to eat."

This is true. However, clean eating also relies on us actually learning how to COOK, too.

Despite the rampant success of the Food Network and Cooking Channel TV, a vast number of Americans don't know how to cook even a simple meal (e.g., preparing beans from scratch and making a pot of brown rice to accompany them).

I never took Home Ec in school because I figured my mom could (and did) teach me how to cook.

However, maybe we should consider making Home Ec mandatory so the next generation can master the basics and have a foundation for their clean eating....?

Anonymous said...

I think we've also forgotten what REAL food tastes like. We're so used to the sugared and salted up, processed versions! And, I agree with Ellen. I'm a pretty pathetic cook. My plan was to marry for money and HIRE a cook so I didn't need to know how. That didn't exactly pan out for me... LOL

Healthy Heather said...

Both right on the mark! I have no idea what the current state of Home Ec is but I suspect the syllabus is just a folder of take-out menus. LOL