There are so many diet possibilities these days. You can be vegetarian or vegan. You can eat a gluten-free or sugar-free diet or a no flour, no sugar, nothing white diet. You can give up dairy or eggs. And for each and every one of these diets, you can find information about how it is the best diet.
And the word “diet” has changed. It was used to describe a way to eat to lose weight. Like the beet diet. Yes, I think I tried that diet once. I think I actually ate canned beets for every meal for a week somewhere in my twenties. Scary. But now, diet is about a style of eating. Sure, you might lose weight from following a specific diet, but the emphasis is usually put on health benefits other than weight loss.
With so many options, what are we supposed to eat? I have said before that we should eat whole foods. Stuff that grows. Food that is produced from nature. Not man-made food. And then I started thinking that maybe I should try to cut out meat or cut out dairy or cut out all white things, meaning flour and sugar. And then my head started to explode!
It’s as though “diet” has become some kind of trend. Like it’s trendy to be vegan or to eliminate dairy or sugar. And it is making me skeptical about the whole thing.
It’s kind of like the same issue I have about religion. Why, oh, why, do we have to pick one specific religion or diet and then we are committed to the tenements of that one specific religion or diet or we either go to Hell or die of cancer? I can’t take it.
So, here’s what I am going to do. I am going to eat a balanced diet, made up of mostly whole foods. I am going to enjoy my yogurt and I am going to eat cheese, because I really, really like cheese. In moderation, because we know that already. Moderation is a key to diet success. And for the white stuff, well, I don’t eat much refined sugar at all anyway, so I am good with that. And I don’t eat a lot of meat, but my body often craves protein and I think that is related to my running schedule. And I won’t deprive myself of that because I need protein for muscle recovery.
I will buy organic foods and free range meat. That way I am hopefully eliminating chemicals and cruelty. But, I can’t join a food religion. Food is a basic need for survival, not a basis for a belief system!