Calling for an end to fad diets!

What if we stopped treating the body like it was defective? What if instead, we began to take care of ourselves, nourish and respect our bodies and allow them to work properly? Hi, I am a Registered Dietician, and I’m calling for an end to fad diets. My proposal:

Start eating real food

Can we start listening to our bodies and give up the idea that there is a universal cure for health issues found in the sea of fad diets? Where did our sense of trust go that we intuitively knew when, how much, and what to eat, as we did when we were children? We have lost touch with how to self-regulate our food choices. The processed foods that have invaded our diets have only lead to a decrease in our ability to trust our bodies and follow their signs in regards to what and how much to eat. Processed foods specifically work on the brain pathways to inhibit our natural satiety signals.

Start cooking real food

There is an excellent documentary on BBC about the healthiest diets in the world. The diets that rated the healthiest were not vegan, paleo or ketogenic, they were based on a variety of whole foods. People in these cultures still valued sitting down with their friends and family to enjoy home cooked meals. If there was one habit that you could start that would have one of the most profound impacts on your health and the health of your family, it would be to start cooking real food.

The fear of carbohydrates

This fear needs to die a short death never to return! How is it that we (Americans) think that somehow if you eat carbohydrates you will immediately gain weight? Travel outside of the U.S. and you see cultures who nearly live solely on whole food carbohydrates, and the people are slender and virtually free of disease. America did not go into an obesity epidemic by eating carbs. 40% of the American diet is unhealthy fats, and we eat, on average, 300 more calories day than we did in the 1970s. So please, stop blaming the carbs!

The truth isn’t sexy

The truth may set you free from a lifetime of dieting. The truth is, we aren’t fat from fat, we aren’t fat from carbs, and protein is not going to magically make you thin.  The truth is that 70% of the calories in the average American’s diet come from processed foods. We consume less than 2 servings of veggies a day and this is counting the ketchup on your burger. Our children are being raised with processed foods, and most of what they eat comes out of a box. No, Poptarts are not a healthy breakfast.

Our disconnection from real food, lack of cooking, and reliance of processed foods is taking a toll on our health. It is estimated that by 2030 30% of Caucasian children will be diabetic and 50% of Ethnic children will be diabetic. On top of that, 50% of children by 2050 will be on the autistic spectrum due to processed (degraded) foods and the added chemicals within them. It is not due to some magical change to our genome.

These statistics make tears well up in my eyes. We are leading our children (and ourselves) down a path of obesity, chronic disease and illness from what we are feeding and not feeding them. We have become so disconnected from real food in this culture and our kids are paying the price. Every cell in our body thrives on the nutrients found in whole foods. IF you remove those nutrients, degradation of the body takes place.

The most powerful change

Take back control and bring an end to fad diets. The most powerful change you can make to your diet this year would be to start eating and cooking real food. Try to minimize packaged and processed foods. Make it a goal to sit down and eat at least one home cooked meal a day. Your body, mind, spirit and family will all benefit from this simple change.

Post by Ariel

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