When I’m out at the doctor’s office, I usually eat out. I have a few favorite haunts, like most folks. That Cesar Salad is a killer if you let the staff dress it for you. That little tub in the photo is 240 calories but 660 mg of sodium (almost 45% of my 1500 mg of daily recommendation due to my high blood pressure). I use half of it. It’s enough.
I had the lunch steak and baked sweet potato. It’s a double portion, but I’m going swimming and not eating again for hours. It’s a treat to eat big sometimes. We just can’t do this all the time. I do it about once a month now. I used to do it two or three times a week. I’m going onto perfection, as we say!
As I was reading a response to a paper written against the American Heart Association’s recommendation to replace saturated animal fats with heart healthy unsaturated plant oils and fats, I came across this wonderful response. While some people carped about “who can you trust?” And “my facts are as good as your facts,” this person had good wisdom to impart. I want to share it!
WISDOM: IMPROVE YOUR DIET
One should focus on improving dietary patterns in a positive way, and, contrary to what is believed, this can be done avoiding controversial and emotional arguments entirely.
EAT MORE FIBER
De-emphasize individual ingredients. For instance, on a population basis, Increasing fiber intake a few grams daily (currently we eat 15g, and the optimum is about double that) would produce significant benefits.
EAT SALAD DAILY
Similarly, eating one medium-large fresh salad (without destroying it with add-ons) daily would do the same. Add one medium fresh fruit salad daily (without added sugar), and three or more portions of beans or lentils per week, and fresh cherry tomatoes as snacks. This is positive dietary advice, not negative.
EAT WHOLE FOODS MADE AT HOME
Another principle that has universal acceptance–eat fresh, home-made, real food, which also has social benefits.
PROCESSED FOODS ARE UNHEALTHY
Processed food is unhealthy for many reasons, and 60% of what Americans eat is ultra-processed.
DRINK MORE WATER
The preferred beverages might be water (unflavored) or home-made green tea.
EAT POSITIVELY FOR HEALTH
There is sufficient flexibility in such a “eat positively for health” philosophy to meet most needs. The major barrier, as in the past, is that people do not accept good advice, blaming others for their own unhealthy choices. Yes, this is hard in our current environment–but possible.
ROME WASN’T BUILT IN A DAY–THE JOURNEY OF A 1,000 STEPS BEGINS WITH ONE.