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Food Then and Now: Part 4

Posted on 03/09/2016 at 10:58 AM by Lia Bahls, RD

Here we are. The final part in our series discussing how our lifestyle changes have affected how we eat and our ability to lose weight.

 

Let’s take a quick look at the last three major changes:

 

  1. We value inactivity: We sit more, move less, but eat the same, if not more.
  2. We don’t eat at home anymore: Schedules are too busy for home-cooked meals so we turn to fast food and dining out, decreasing our wallets while increasing our waistlines.
  3. We mindlessly eat: We don’t pay attention anymore to what we’re eating and are too easily distracted by electronics.

 

This last major lifestyle change, I believe, is the biggest underlying factor that affects our society’s inability to lose weight.

 

Every meal is not a party: We have this belief that every time we eat it needs to be a “festival in our mouth”. It needs to be exciting, unique, taste amazing . . . it needs to have that “wow” factor. No offense to foodies (who generally do dedicate the time to preparing decent food), but the reality is food is just fuel. It’s great when you are able to really enjoy what you eat, but most of the time we need to free ourselves (and most importantly free those in our household preparing our meals) from this idea that food is supposed to be an exciting event every time our stomach indicates hunger. We need to get away from avoiding nutritious foods such as vegetables because they just aren’t as enticing as, say, an Oreo cookie or burger from the drive-through. Just because we don’t have time to prepare a feast worthy of a Pinterest post doesn’t mean it’s okay to grab the frozen fish sticks! In the same amount of time you’d spend cooking chicken nuggets or a potpie you can grill up some chicken, boil some rice and broccoli and sit down with a nice glass of WATER.  

 

Give yourself a break. Food does not have to be gourmet. It just needs to be simple and healthy. If it happens to look nice, that’s a bonus!

 

As we conclude this series, I want to note that this is not an all-inclusive explanation of why it is harder to lose weight today than it was in the past. I hope that these posts give you an idea of why your weight may not be coming off. I also hope that these points illustrate to you that there are a lot of things you can do in your day-to-day life to help you manage your weight. 

 

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