Friday, February 19, 2010

Road to Health, Part 2: Health Food vs. Diet Food

Throughout the twists and turns of my journey to health, I hit a fork in my road. Do I want to just be skinny or do I want to be healthy?

A couple of years ago, I joined a weight-loss support group. This certain group also sold their own food in grocery stores. My favorite was their snack cakes. If I ate really well, I could eat two or three snack cakes. One day, I decided to read the ingredients in these tasty morsels and was shocked at what they contained. Sugar, partially hydrogenated oils, enriched, bleached flour, and so on. This seemed to contradict the information they were teaching in their meetings. It also contradicted what a lot of nutritionists were teaching as well.

Too much sugar can lead to diabetes. Partially hydrogenated oils clog arteries and raise cholesterol levels. Enriched, bleached flour has no nutritional value and can also lead to diabetes. Were these little snack cakes worth my health?

That's when I made my decision to be healthy. I've been far from perfect, but now I'm conscious of it. I've been looking at different ways of eating - low-carb, high-protein, vegetarian, and so on. I think I've come across a way of eating that will benefit myself as well as my family. It's called "clean eating." Basically, you eat fruits, veggies, whole grains, nuts, seeds, beans, and lean meats. They should be minimally processed and no artificial anything added. It's a new way of eating and like I said, I'm not perfect. It's a slow process, but I have seen results when I do stick to the clean eating plan. I lost weight and my skin cleared up. I had more energy and was ready to start the day, instead of waking up groggy. Now that I'm feeling better, I plan to resume this plan.

What's your opinion regarding health food and diet food? I'd love to hear it.


Robbie Iobst said...

Jo, this is my daily battle. I have to eat food but I often choose bad foods. I am, too, in a very, very slow process discovering new foods that are healthy for me. Currently I am trying to find a hummus I like that I can eat with carrots. But of course, those evil girl scouts have cookies at my door. :0) Kidding about the evil thing. Sigh. One step forward, two steps back. I am with you girl!

Anonymous said...

I'm using a diet program right now. Its proven itself to me to work - as long as I stick to it. I do feel better, have more energy and my cholesterol dropped phenomenally! My cardiologist was thrilled with that. My blood pressure is lower, although it wasn't high to begin with. I feel much better with myself - which begs me to ask why I occassionally let myself stray from this healthier way of eating.
I lost almost 50 pounds!
It consists of three meals a day - 60% protein, 20% [good] fats, 20% [good] carbs. I suppliment with protein drinks [that taste really, really good!] to keep my sugar levels balanced.
Having lost so much weight definitely makes it MUCH easier to exercise - but I won't go as far as to say that it makes me WANT to exercise. But, since its easier, I do. Before it was like carrying a 50 lb bag of dog food onto the treadmill with me!!! I have a hard time picking up a 40 lb bag into my shopping cart!
So - knowing all of this, I'm now dealing with why I self-sabotage...

I'll be following closely!

Anonymous said...

I have studied and studied to find "the answer" to health and lo and behold, I found it in the Bible. You can read about my philosophy on my blog (which sounds similar to yours).

Also, good job on recognizing how those snack cakes are so unhealthy!



Joanna said...

Thank you all for your comments. I'm sorry you are waging the same battles. I'm sure it's one of the enemy's ways of keeping us from doing the Lord's will. This, of course, only makes me angry and motivated to do more. Let's keep encouraging each other!

Shannon - thank you so much for stopping by my blog. I stopped by yours and look forward to reading more.

Jan Parrish said...

Great post, Joanna. I've also noticed that I don't need to ear as much of the healthy food because it's more filling due to it's nutritional content. :)