Friday, May 31, 2013

Low Fat No Fat Made Me Fat!

As child of the 80's, there is no diet that I haven't tried. Okay, except for the Grapefruit Diet because I despise grapefruits! Low fat, no fat, only green foods, no meat, no sweets, diet pills (so not proud of that) and everything else under the sun. I was never really fat fat, but I was chubby.

A little background on how I got that way. First, let me just say that I adore my parents. They are the best and ALWAYS tried to do what was best for me. That being said, I learned a lot of bad habits from them. My mom has a serious sweet tooth and she could live off bread and butter for the rest of her life and be perfectly happy. This, she passed on to me. Thanks mom:(
My dad was gone a lot because of his business and, since it was just me and mom at home, we ate out. A lot. Like more often than not. There was a diner close to our house that we ate at a lot. Of course there were the usual fast food restaurants too.

My dad was, and still is, a very picky eater. He only likes a limited variety of foods so, when he was home, we would have hot dogs, mac and cheese and meatloaf on a regular basis. He only liked corn and peas so that was our only vegetable. So you can probably guess that for the longest time, I was also a very picky eater.

Both of my parents worked so I was home alone after school. It was nothing for me to go through a bag of doritoes in a day or two. Ice cream was always readily available so I ate a lot of that while I waited for someone to come home. My eating habits as a kid, teenager and young adult were awful! I wasn't terribly active but I ate like all my athlete friends did. Pizza joints and McDonalds were our favorite hangouts.

The point of telling you all this is just to show what an influence parents have on their children even when they don't think they are paying attention. My parents never made me eat veggies and fruit because they weren't eating a lot of them. I was never taught about whole foods or nutrition. Our family gatherings always centered around food. Large amounts of heavy or decadent foods. No one told me to stop. No one told me to exercise. No one taught me that what I put into my body matters.

It was last year when I really made the connection that food fuels my body and if I fill it up on cheap fuel, it is going to run bad. But just knowing that fact doesn't necessarily make it easy to change. Change is hard, no matter who you are. After a year of change, I still find myself going through a drive thru when I am pressed for time. Thankfully, those times are getting further apart.

I don't think good health is a destination. I think it is making better choices as much as possible and forgiving yourself when you choose unwisely. You will eat that 2nd piece of cake at times. You will polish off everything on your plate when you should have split it with someone else. You just have to be aware when those things are happening so you can take bigger steps to prevent them next time.

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