One problem I have struggled with much of my life is my weight. Over the past three years, I have made various efforts to lose weight with varying degrees of success. One challenge I have in this quest is that as a result of my dietary choices, my family eats very differently than I do.
Yesterday morning, my wife had an issue with me reading the ingredients on a box of brownies my wife was making for her and the kids. I hadn’t even said anything about the ingredients, yet she freaked out because I have done so about other foods in the recent past. She thinks I’m passing judgement on the food she’s eating.
In a sense, she’s right, but I’m passing judgement for my own personal consumption. Whatever she wants to eat is her business. We agreed that if I wanted to read ingredients on food she was eating, I wouldn’t do it in front of her.
This ended up being an extremely emotional issue for me, even though it was basically my wife’s problem. I felt that because of my dietary choices, I am isolating myself from the rest of the family. Unless we eat out, we almost never eat together as a family. Part of this is because younger children will often eat differently than adults, but part of it is because my wife and I eat so differently. Cooking meals, when they happen, is rare.
I have a problem with food. I eat when I’m not hungry. I eat when I’m anxious (especially when travelling). I eat at plenty of times I shouldn’t. I also have a difficult time resisting certain foods when they are in my presence. Some of those foods I serve to my kids. Some foods are flat-out hard to avoid because they are everywhere.
I’m struggling with this, and I need help. Part of the problem is all the conflicting information about what to eat, when to eat, how to prepare it, and so on. The diet industry has commercialized substantially. There seems to be a profit motive behind nearly every diet method out there in terms of merchandising. Also, there is a certain profit motive in keeping people unhealthy so they can be “treated” with drugs that likely are a cure worse than the “disease.”
The only sensible advise I’ve received lately is to eat as much whole, unprocessed foods as possible. It makes sense because wide-spread obesity in humans is a relatively recent phoenomenon quite likely caused by eating food humans weren’t designed to eat. It is increasingly difficult to find whole, unprocessed food.
I have to read labels carefully, even on supposedly natural food. Labels can proclaim “all natural” yet contain crap like high-fruitcose corn syrup, something clearly not natural. Hydrogenated oils, even partially-hydrogenated oils are another example of things that are everywhere and hard to avoid. The other sensible advise here is “if you read a label and don’t know what an ingredient is, put it back.”