Dear Leah Renee,
There are so many diets out there and I’m sick of them. I don’t know what else to say! Help! Thanks. ~Barbara, NM
Diet? No! Who wants to do that?! Want to know a secret? Eating foods that are naturally good for you, and good to eat should be what your “diet” consists of. Diet by definition is “food and drink considered in terms of its qualities, composition, and its effects on health“. If we exist, so does our diet, but we don’t have to look at it in terms of restrictions or define ourselves by what we do or do not eat. It’s quite simple: if it grew from the ground, came from a tree, an animal (if you’re not a vegetarian or vegan) and was not processed with a bunch of chemicals, it’s a good food to eat.
So why did this get complicated or somehow lost in translation? Because we were given so many options. It’s not so simple anymore! Endless options make it tough to choose. Have you ever gone to a buffet or salad bar and seen all the different foods you could choose from and feel overwhelmed? Did you end up filling up on more than you normally would? Yeah, me too. That’s the problem. Our grocery stores are HUGE. Each section of each aisle is packed with variations of products only differing slightly from the next, but promising so much more. I don’t care if it’s beans, hot sauce, eggs, or milk! There are SO MANY TO CHOOSE FROM! This seems to go for the shampoo aisle too. And toothpaste. Bottom line–keep it basic. Know what you like, know what’s good for you. You know if it’s not good for you. Some things are trickier, sure. Labels lie and packages are deceiving–but if you’re buying the bulk of your items NOT in packaging a.k.a. around the parameter of the grocery store–you’re doing well. That’s where the basics are stocked–all around the outer portion of the store: produce, meats, fish, breads, dairy.
Our grandparents didn’t really have this problem. That’s because they didn’t have so much to choose from! Nor did they have ads on television (or maybe a television at all) showing us how good that greasy burger and fries look or how the chips full of chemicals will truly satisfy your hunger. They also cooked at home a lot more which meant less salt, sugar, and ingredients all together. It meant more nutrients, herbs, and beneficial spices.
One of the great parts about sticking to the basics is that when you do decide to have something at a party, go out with your friends on the weekend, indulge a little, it’s not going to make a big dent. When you’re eating and living well 90% of the time, 10% is not going to do anything than make you feel even more happy and alive. 🙂