Back in the days when we were responsible for our own food, and it was really our only job (think cavemen, for example), people ate what was there. No store to wander into, no home delivery or online service. Food was what you could find that day.
People started to get creative with food choices when the luxury to do so became an option.
One of the earliest (fad) diets was developed by a minister in 1829 after he invented Graham crackers.
A late 19th-century casket maker’s eating style offers a peek into the origins of the low carbohydrate diet.
Let’s shift from “recreational eating” to eating when you have a health condition that is impacted by your food choice. There’s loads of stories here, but for sake of length and so forth, we’ll take a look at diabetes.
The diet for people with diabetes has been evolving as we learn more about diabetes and food. Food recommendations for diabetes have been around since about 1152 BC. It wasn’t until 1950 that a meal planner was devised based on the components of foods, including calories, carbohydrate, protein, and fat. We learn, we update, we shift.
If you look at how the recommendations have changed as research continues to uncover more information for us, it’s a bit mind boggling. New information continues to expand our knowledge about food, and oftentimes, frustratingly, what we thought was right for our health changes.
Isn’t it a different mind set when something is optional versus a “must”? If you were told you HAD to do some of the odd things that many fad diets recommend, you wouldn’t. How come you want to try them when you don’t have to, especially if they can have the opposite impact of what you want to happen?
So what, you ask?
Our journey as people on this earth has changed drastically.
What we know about food and caring for ourselves is ever evolving.
Many people have access to food that would have been unimaginable to our early ancestors.
Who we listen to and what we do matters to our quality and quantity of life.
You don’t have to wait to be unhealthy or diagnosed with something to change habits.
What if we started doing some pretty basic but impactful things every week?
Celebrities or reality stars who look glamorous live their lives and experience things most of us won’t. We imagine them doing really unique things all the time, not mundane things like eating balanced meals and getting in daily activity. Can you imagine (insert your favorite celebrity name here) sitting around munching a plain old fruit or vegetable, or lacing up their sneaks to go for a walk or run? It’s more likely that we think they are doing some really weird or nearly impossible to be who they are. If they say they do whatever seemingly bizarre thing, we think that sounds “normal” since their life seems so untouchable to most of us.
Every once in a while you get a story about someone like JLo, Sophia Loren, or Hugh Jackman getting enough sleep, exercising, and/or paying attention to their lifestyle choices in a somewhat more relatable (and thankfully, realistic) manner.
Being a registered dietitian and certified personal trainer (I am both) can be rewarding, really fun and useful-to-society. Just like almost every other profession, there are many ways trained health professionals can help people. How you need us to help you is as diverse as people are. So find one of us who actually has training in the topic at hand and that is a good fit for your style and approach.
There are visual learners, numbers people, rule followers, rule breakers. How you like to talk and think about things matters, and your choices will put you on the journey that will literally last a lifetime.
Something to consider next time you choose who will be “the boss” of your food and lifestyle choices, because ultimately, it’s you.