To you, Lord, I call;
you are my Rock
Today I wanted to talk about some ideas put forth by the diet industry that are frankly horribly dumb and simply a means of getting money. I am in no way a professional or doctor but have been studying nutrition on my own for 7 years and have also tried basically every diet out there myself (disclaimer: there is no “diet” out there that will ever make you happy). When I was overweight, it was the result of a mental illness. When I lost weight, it was the result of a mental illness. Amidst the two, my sucked in brain decided to try certain styles of eating– none of which changes my body whatsoever.
Gluten-Free. Did you know that this is officially a “buzz term?” About half of all grocery shoppers believe that buying a product that says “gluten-free” is healthier for them. It’s put on burgers, ice creams, and even sodas. Um, hello? I would be concerned if there was gluten IN any of those products. Gluten is a NATURALLY OCCURING protein found in wheat, barley, and rye. There is nothing wrong with that protein or wheat in its natural form. Of course when it’s stripped into something like a cookie and laden with sugar that isn’t healthy, but gluten itself is not bad and can be very healthily incorporated into meals.
Low-Carb. This one just makes no sense. Our bodies literally LIVE off carbs. If you’re going all day eating chicken and nuts and oils you’re going to be satiated, but also weighed down, tired, and without energy. It also takes much less volume of high-protein and high-fat foods to be filled up.
Only Carb. This is a typical vegan recommended diet (I’m not whatsoever suggesting or putting down vegans or that all vegans eat like this, just that SOME do) and it makes much more sense than low-carb, but still eating 100% carbs, which means JUST raw fruits and vegetables, provides optimal energy, but not all the nutrients one’s body needs. I believe in thriving PRIMARILY off carbs in abundance, but incorporating mono unsaturated fats and lean protein is essential for muscle growth, skin and hair health, and gut health.
5:2. This one actually gets me FIRED UP. “5:2” suggests its victims eat “whatever they want” 5 days of the week, and to fast (500 calories or less, aka starvation) 2 days a week. This literally makes no sense and puts people prone to food thoughts/obsession into a) a place to genuinely overeat and put more emphasis on foods, and b) two days of the week with no energy for daily function, and c) the entire week/life/duration of the pointless diet becomes about the food. AGH.
Raw Till 4. For one thing, the idea that eating after 8pm “will make you gain weight” is completely false. Weight gain is determined by the calories in/calories out module; but that isn’t the whole picture. For example, my weight loss was the result of a debilitating eating disorder in which I ate next to nothing for months straight. Therefore the weight I lost was disproportionate for quite some time, and still is. The foods that one is eating, the type of foods that is, is what actually matters. For health, because if one is eating whole foods from the earth and from our God, the body will just do what it needs to do and even out. It is literally when food is the focus and the enemy turns it into one’s very purpose that not only is his patron miserable, but the body doesn’t do what the enemy promises at all. Making sense? Anyway, beyond the timing of Raw Till 4 (which suggests eating only raw food before 4pm, and then having one cooked meal) again, in my opinion, puts the focus on the food. What if you feel like oatmeal or toast in the morning? Restriction is not just about quantity; cutting out food groups is restrictive, too.
“Intuitive Eating.” Many diets claim to promote intuitive eating– which is what the majority of the world does– eats when their hungry or feels they need food. Stops when they’re satisfied. I have laughed reading some of these diets that promote “intuitive eating” but then list meal plans complete with calorie counts. No words necessary.
MUFA Diet. This one sucked in my 11-year-old brain because it involved peanut butter. Natural monounsaturated fatty acids are supposedly “fat busters,” foods like organic nuts, avocado, coconut oils, seeds. I like that this suggests making sure a little bit of healthy fats are incorporated, but the plan is again laden with just that– DAILY PLANS.
Alcohol Diet. I think the name of this one speaks for itself. The diet that was released in 2015 suggested getting 80% of daily calories from alcohol. Like whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaat
High Protein. Eating and bulking up on protein ingredients, especially synthetic ones, goes straight to the muscles, but vital nutrients from carbs will go amiss.
As a disclaimer, I am extremely interested in nutrition, macros, the optimal way to eat, and truly believe in whole foods eating that isn’t regimented nor consuming. Ultimately, if the fear of food is an overpowering aspect of one’s day, that isn’t healthy or okay. And for those who follow or believe in any of the above eating methods (perhaps besides the alcohol one) that’s great, and if it isn’t consuming your life in way that is beyond a God-given passion, that’s fantastic and I pray that the Lord will show me where he wants me in the way of my passion for food too!