We are still in the honeymoon stage of 2013, and because of this, there are countless posts from people I know (and don’t know) in cyberspace about drastically changing their diet. If you are one of these people, do not be offended! I very, very much admire your tenacity, because I don’t have it. I can’t become a 100% clean eater at this point in my life, but boy, am I trying.
I was browsing blogs last night and came across one that is relatively new and has thousands of followers already. The blog’s author is very passionate about what he/she does, and it shows! However, I myself don’t see the appeal. If I were the average American, switching from chicken nuggets to mung beans would turn me off from health foods pretty quickly. We are marketed so many processed, easy-to-stick-in-the-microwave foods… why would we want to change to something that seems less appealing, seems so drastic?
I’ve been eating gluten free for almost five years now (has it really been that long? Wow) and, man, it sucked in the beginning. I hated it. Gluten surrounds us, and it was so much easier to feel crummy and eat pizza than stick it out for a less obvious alternative. This relates to our culture: it is much easier to eat less healthy than we should. There are bar specials on fried appetizers, not so much a romaine salad. Drastic diets/eating habits are wonderful in theory, but they won’t hold your hand when you are stressed beyond belief and find yourself in a fast food drive-thru line.
Which brings me back to the idea of gradual change. I will openly admit, I was not as much of a clean eater one year ago from today. This process of gradual change began over last summer for me. It only has kicked into high gear in the past three months or so, and I’m absolutely not perfect about it yet. But when I fall off the horse, little or largely, I try to re-focus and not guilt trip myself about it. Because changing a lifetime of eating habits is not an overnight transformation. If it is for you, then pat yourself on the back, because that is a skill I admire and do not possess. If you are anything like me, then taking your life, your health, and your habits into your own hands can be a day-by-day process. But once you have your habits in line, you may find that your mistakes are less frequent and less severe… until you truly do prefer those healthy mung beans.You will find your own favorite health foods, and you will be the master of your habits and your life. 🙂
If you would like more inspiring ideas for gradual food changes, check out this article from Whole Foods Market’s website. It inspired me to write this blog article!