For the first time in my life I got called a health nut the other day. This happened on the Hungry Girl Facebook wall when somebody got upset at me because I told them that what they were eating was unhealthy. It seems like some people are proud that they are eating artificial sweeteners and overly processed foods and feel that they are eating healthy by doing so. I am never going to dictate how, and how not, a person should eat, but you should never assume that you are being healthy by consuming such products.
People have been brainwashed by the diet and food industry into thinking that not having any real sugar or fat is a good thing, that only eating the kind of products that contain neither of those ingredients will make you more healthy and lose weight. If that is a fact then why are people getting more and more obese in this country? Walk into any fast food restaurant and you will see somebody gulping down a burger then taking dainty sips from their diet soda. As if drinking the diet soda is going to help them lose weight when they are eating something that has almost their entire daily recommended caloric intake contained in it!
I am not saying that I am perfect when it comes to eating the right foods, and I do not eat only organic products. What I try to do is avoid certain ingredients and additives such as high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), tertiary butylhydroquinone (TBHQ), and artificial sweeteners. Do I goof up and accidentally buy products with these ingredients in them? Of course I do because I’m human, but I always try to remember to read food labels and put back on the shelf anything that is overly offensive nutrition wise. Once in a while I’ll even have a slice of pizza or something else similar, but I do it in moderation. People who are even more health conscious than I am would say that I am not trying hard enough to eat healthy. What I say to them is that I am trying my best and that is what counts.
I really feel that people who fall for the hype of diet and fake health products are trying their best, because that is all they can do with the information that they are given. If you take one hour out of your day and go to some websites online to look up the nutritional stats of those products you will find that many of them are very unhealthy for you and may even harm you in the long run. The companies that make those products really don’t care about your health, all they care about are profits. I can understand why people get defensive when they are told that these products really aren’t good for them, but sticking your head in the sand or putting your fingers in your ears isn’t going to do you much good. What is going to help you is getting out of your comfort zone and maybe trying to change the food that you eat. Take baby steps, like buying organic milk or meat, or buying cookies that are made out of real sugar instead of HFCS.
More important than all this is to take what foods people recommend with a grain of salt because many food companies send bloggers, big and small, free products. When the blogger gives the product a glowing review they will get even more free products. So the person, or blog in question, just becomes a walking billboard and really nothing else. Personally, I have decided to refuse food if it is offered to me because I don’t want people to think that I am shilling products on purpose. When it comes down to it no blogger is perfect and following all the advice they give without stopping to think about it for a second is a bad thing. Thinking for yourself when it comes to your health will make you a happier and healthier person. *
So, am I a ‘health nut’? If being a health nut means that I try to eat as best as I can and care about what I put in my body then I fully embrace the word and will own it from this moment forward.
Here is great blog about nutrition that I have learned a lot from.
Here is a great site that actually lists all the foods that you eat and rates them based on the ingredients they contain. They even have apps so that you can scan products while in the store to see how they rate! Nifty!
*Wait…you should always listen to me because it would be awfully nifty to have my very own rabid horde of fans. *coughs*