I was watching the cooking channel as I was working on a project. Commercial after commercial used the word “heathy” in their ads. What manufacturers want us to believe: a product will make you healthy.
Here’s how it really works: move your body, eat real food, move your body, eat real food, move your body, eat real food. Yep, it’s that simple. However, it is not EASY. It just isn’t. Its hard to take care of ourselves. Its hard to make choices that lead to improving our longevity. Its hard to leave the processed foods out of our cart. Its hard to choose fresh vegetables and fruits that might need prep work.
Confession #1: I recently broke one of my long standing food rules. Did I ever mention I love BBQ potato chips? You probably know where this is going. With a lot of foods I can have just a few. I can walk by my hall stand treat bowl without even noticing the Rolos and dark chocolate mini bars. However, when it comes to potato chips I CANNOT MODERATE. I will eat a whole bag one handful at a time.
Clarification: I will eat a whole bag of BBQ potato chips. Plain chips can stay open in the pantry for a week, I have a few and I am satisfied. Salt & Vinegar, my girl’s favorite, I don’t even open that bag. BBQ, though, I cannot stop thinking about them till the bag is chip dust and my fingers are stained a little orange and my breath smells like, hmmm, something not good. My general rule is I don’t buy them unless I have a group to help me eat them. We were having people over for the 4th, a week away, the chips were 2 for 1 and in my cart they went, the family size. Honey was out of town. I knew better.
And what about moving our bodies? That can take a back seat to so many others things in life. I have an ongoing to-do list and moving more is not on it. It should be at the top. Again, its hard to do the simple thing like take a walk, take the stairs, park in the back of the lot.
Baby steps. Make one small change you can stick with today, tomorrow and most other days. A few years ago I stopped putting sugar on my shredded wheat. It was hard. It just did not taste the same. Honey might even say this cereal tastes like cardboard. The first change I made was to simply measure out the sugar, every single breakfast. It was shocking to realize I was adding tablespoons of sugar to my morning meal. Then slowly I cut back the amount. Again, with the idea that I was to start small and stick with the plan. Finally, I quit the sugar habit all together. It took months.
Confession #2: I did the math. No, I can’t do it my head like Honey and my daughter. The calculator showed I was consuming 39 cups of processed sugar a year. Thinking I had made a mistake, I ran the numbers again. Thats a confession thats harder to admit than 1 bag of chips: 39 cups of sugar. On purpose.
I am wondering now, as I write this, if adding up those numbers in the beginning would have made a difference in my breakfast choice. It feels good to have the sugar bowl a part of my past. One small change you can stick with can make a bigger difference than a ‘healthy’ product.
Those chips though? Even knowing a large, family size is thousands of calories and a week’s worth of fat grams, I just have to stay away.
Move your body, eat real food.
What small change can you make?