Healthful & Happy
The diet revolution, or rather, the lie that it it
so thinly hides, needs to stop as soon as possible. This
twenty-year-old trend, designed to sell the idea of healthful living to
a public who had increasingly relied upon technology to do most of
their heavy lifting, who had relegated their lives to televisions,
video game systems, and, now, computers, did very little to stave off
the increasing frequency of obesity in the country.
In fact, the very notion that a person could shave
off pounds just by laying off of fatty foods is a gross
misrepresentation of the whole truth about healthful living.
Yes, it's important to eat a balanced diet, to keep yourself well
hydrated with WATER rather than relying solely on corn-syrup-filled
soft drinks or coffees. It's good to have green stuff on a plate that
you'll actually eat. On the other hand, if you're spending so much time
on a South beach or Jenny Craig or Weight Watchers regimen without
keeping up with regular exercise as well, all the calorie counting in
the world will do you little good.
I had a friend in my early years at college who
had three very palpable and dangerous addictions that she was sure
contributed to her obesity. She had a thing for Reese's Peanut Butter
Cups, Triple Whoppers, and Star Trek: The Next Generation. In the
middle of our sophomore year, she declared that she wanted to lose
weight, and in order to do so she would simply convert to
So she had to give up the Triples. After a few
months of halving her Reese's intake and swapping her habit with the
Triples with falafel, she noticed a drop of about ten pounds. But that
was about where the losses stopped, because while she had made the very
powerful choice to cut meat out of her diet entirely, she still hadn't
given up the TNG habit.
Her days might have lacked the processed
pseudo-beef, but her nights were still filled with holodeck fantasies
of Starfleet jazzmen and their brunette lovers, of unstoppable
half-men, half-machines who constantly reminded the brave crew that
their resistance was futile. Not once did she consider that the change in diet, while a great move and wonderful step in the right direction, was at best only half the battle.
She never gave up the long TNG marathon nights.
She never got a treadmill, never picked up a barbell, never even
decided to go for a walk. So, while her diet was definitely better--
her energy was up, her day-to-day mood was better, and more
importantly, she never broke down and noshed on a handful of triples
behind our backs, at least not to my knowledge-- she never lost the
weight that she'd really wanted to lose.
She remained a healthful, happy, sedentary person who struggled for the longest time with why she hadn't lost more.
Then she bought a bike and started riding it
around instead of driving. About six months after the purchase,
inkeeping with her diet change, the weight came eventually came off.