By Christie Pool
I can’t take it anymore.
There was a day not so long ago when fat made you fat and eating carbs would prevent you from losing weight. Now, fatty avocados are great for us, containing a “good” fat that we need, and a no-carb diet prevents you from losing weight.
What? That’s not what we were told last year - or even last week.
Nutrition is a maze. One day we hear coffee is bad for us then we hear it’s loaded with essential antioxidants and beneficial nutrients. And eggs? They used to have too much cholesterol and caused heart disease. Now we’re told a whole egg is a nutritional powerhouse filled with all kinds of things we need to be healthy, and that all that nutrition comes in an inexpensive 77 calories. Why wouldn’t we eat them every day?
Nutrition is confusing and, to be completely honest, exhausting. We all want to do the best for our bodies but the information filtering down to us - whether it be from WebMd or Khloe Kardashian - is ever changing. Khloe’s sister Kim leaves out all sugar and carbs but eats meat and dairy, while Khloe won’t touch dairy or red meat. I’m pretty sure I don’t want to live in a world without cheese, so I’ll have to ax Khloe’s philosophy from my list of potential diets.
Nutrition science and the food industry have been changing their minds about what Americans should eat for years. Low fat, no fat, low carb, high protein - and the likes of Dr. Oz doesn’t help. While he seemingly has good intentions, Dr. Oz. - just like a 24-hour news show - has a lot of time to fill on his television show. While his audience looks to him for advice on everything from supplements to diet trends, the content he presents is often contradictory. One day he may tell us we’ll lose weight and be healthy if we take certain supplements (think green tea and caffeine supplements) then the next day tout the necessity of even more supplements like Forskolin, raspberry ketones and Yakon syrup, which he says is a “metabolism game-changer.”
Really? By the end of a week filled with his shows, we'd all be throwing down a handful of supplements each day expecting a miracle in a bottle.
Personally, I think it would just be easier - and more fun - to eat a bowl of Cap’n Crunch every night. I mean, the box says it’s filled with nutrients.
Every day someone comes out with something new - we can lose weight by eating rice cakes or we can be healthier eating an all kale diet. We get our information from media outlets who need a fun and exciting new story every day - or, ahem, weekly - to grab attention. Let’s face it, “Eat your fruits and veggies” isn’t as exciting as, “Blueberries new superfood.” The word ‘superfood’ is a good one for the age we are living in - a potential quick fix always gets our attention. We hear ‘superfood’ and think, “If I can eat that one thing every day I’ll live forever.” But guess what? That won’t happen, just like a high protein, low carb, low fat diet won’t make us happy or immune to Alzheimer’s and a few supplements won’t magically burn away fat.
Personally, I think I’ll just go back to author Michael Pollan’s advice from a decade ago: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.”
Basically his premise is: Eat the stuff you find on the outside of your grocery aisles, eat nothing whose ingredient list is longer than Pinocchio’s nose after a day of fibbing, and certainly don’t ever eat anything your grandmother wouldn’t recognize as food.
And maybe a small bowl of ice cream every now and then. Vanilla, of course.