Saturday, February 11, 2012

Eating Healthy vs Dieting

Brian and I have recently been making an effort to eat healthier.  Although we have been motivated by our wedding, that wasn't the only reason that we've been changing our habits.  Every day it seems like some new study comes out that brings to light a direct link between a disease and unhealthy eating.  I think that the choices we make now are an investment in our future - and we control whether or not we make a good investment, or a bad investment.

With that being said, I would never say that I am on a diet.  Sara over at Running In Pink recently wrote a great post asking readers to think about what they consider to be "healthy". Brian and I are trying to change our habits for the long-term, and more for the health benefits than anything else.  When I think of being healthy, I think of overall wellness - and thinking through the foods I choose because of the benefits that they bring my body and mind.  When I think of a diet, I think of something short-term, a quick fix. I know so many people who have tried one diet or another only to fail, and to finally succeed when they decided to commit to taking small steps towards being healthy.  But, I also know that sometimes sticking to a set diet is the only thing that keeps people focused and committed, so to each their own.

That brings me to another topic - judging people for their food choices. For example, I know someone who will always make a comment when I order a salad at a restaurant.  I know that no matter what I say, this person will assume that I'm dieting in order to lose weight for my wedding.  I shouldn't have to defend my choices and justify why I am making a healthy choice.  On the opposite end of the spectrum, I know someone who always comments on unhealthy choices.  Again, I shouldn't have to justify the fact that sometimes a girl just needs a brownie! 

Eating healthy is a really hard choice to make - trust me.  We live in a world that values quick fixes and fast food, so doing the opposite of that is always a struggle.  The next time someone tells you that they are trying to eat healthier, or orders a salad at lunch, try not to judge them.  Maybe they are on a "diet" - and maybe that's what it will take for them to finally start on the path to getting healthy.  Maybe they aren't on a diet, and they are just trying to make the right choices.  Support your friends, and maybe you'll find that you can learn something from one another.

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