Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Somewhere in between 24/7 kale and a bag-a-day Cheetos habit is your sensible diet

I know exactly what I should be eating. You probably do, too.

I own a copy of a book called "The China Study." It's popular with the clean eating crowd, and while some quibble a bit with its science, I don't think anyone would read it and say, "Nah, this guy's wrong. I'm opting for the Bacon Grease Diet."

We know leafy greens are good for us. We know nuts and seeds should be part of our diet, as should fruits, vegetables, "good" fats and complex carbs. We know we should use some common sense when it comes to things like red meat, processed foods, and trans fats.

Yet we Americans still tend to eat in a manner that can only be described as decidedly unhealthy. We eat bad stuff and we eat a lot of it (ask a visitor from another country what strikes them about America, and stunningly often they'll mention the gargantuan portion sizes in our restaurants).

Still, you can't blame anyone for eating what they enjoy. People want to eat what tastes good. Dietitians, physicians and others whose job it is to guide us toward healthier food choices will tell you your palate evolves and that eventually the good stuff will start tasting better, but in my experience, well...that's at best partially true.

I eat pretty healthy, I guess. I get kale and spinach in my daily smoothies, I try to stick to whole grains, I eat a lot of fruit, and my dairy intake is relatively minimal.

But I'm inconsistent with nuts, almost never eat seeds, will drink multiple cups of coffee with half-and-half until the day I die, and don't get nearly as much fish as I should.

On balance, I feel like I'm doing OK, and over the years my blood work has supported that idea. I'm not perfect, but I am intentional about what I eat.

You may be in the same boat. Or maybe you have a much healthier diet than me, in which case kudos to you.

Realistically speaking, though, a lot of us are going to eat Ding Dongs and ice cream, and we're simply not going to stop. The secret, as always, is getting us to do it in some moderation. God bless the people trying to get us there.

No comments:

Post a Comment