Wednesday, April 2, 2014

FoodSanity(2.0)

For decades of my adult life I engaged in regular physical exercise. Still do, for that matter.  During almost all those years I told myself that one compelling reason to do so was to allow myself to “eat whatever I wanted.”  

And, eat I did.  Sweets galore, soft drinks by the case, breads and pastas to no end.  It probably doesn’t say much for my intelligence that I continually struggled to manage my weight even though I was running miles on end and lifting weights regularly. 

Mostly, I wrote those deteriorating physical conditions off to advancing age.  Old guys are supposed to develop large girths, right? Middle-aged guys aren’t supposed to be strong, are they?  We’re expected to get stiff and inflexible as we age, correct?  Blood pressure issues come with age, don't they?

To ameliorate those presumed age-related physical diminishments I would eat margarine instead of butter, consume vegetable oils instead of natural fats, drink diet sodas instead of the sugared ones, and consume every conceivable kind of “whole wheat” or “whole grain” product that I could.  I followed the standard line that a low fat diet was the way to fight off unwanted weight and diseases of the vessels (e.g., cardiovascular, diabetes, and hypertension).  

I am now convinced that I was acting in direct opposition to my own best interests.  I must now admit that I was living in ignorance for most of those years.  

From my most recent learning about wellness and fitness (physical, mental, and emotional), I believe I was being sold, and was buying, a bill of goods that were simply NOT working in my best interest.  Rather, those approaches were in fact hastening me in the direction of the vessel-hardening diseases.  I feel like an idiot.

One of the physicians I pay attention to now, Dr. Robert Lustig, puts it this way, "No amount of exercise can overcome a poor diet."

I'm now doing everything I can to remedy that poor diet problem.  And seeing real and startling positive health benefits.

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