I have had this thought cloud floating in my head for some time. I know that for some, it won’t be well-received. That’s okay. I have heard my fair share of negativity from so-called friends and well-meaning family members, time and time again. I press on…
Let me preface by saying that I am not without blame here. I make a lot of excuses. Excuses get me (and you) exactly nowhere. Read that again. Post it on the fridge. If my fridge held magnets, I would, too. I am learning and re-learning the concept the hard way. Someone smarter than me once said,
“If it is important to you, you will find a way. If not, you will find an excuse.”
I hear ALL THE TIME what people think are valid excuses for not living a healthy lifestyle. Three of the most common are: no time, it’s too hard/it hurts to exercise, and my personal favorite to debunk, not enough money. So here is where my rant comes from. Time and time again, I shop the grocery store and look into people’s carts with sadness. Please know that I do NOT think I am better than anyone, and I am not judging their choices. I am genuinely saddened at the state of our health in this immediate area, our great State of Alabama, our Southern region, and our amazing country. I have an eagerness to share this awareness and knowledge I have about health, and it takes everything in me to keep my big mouth shut! Hence, this blog and post.
I checked out behind this lady and (who I assumed to be) her children, and I watched as she loaded her items onto the conveyor belt. Frozen “meats” of varying origins, Lunchables, Oreos, Chips-Ahoys, Pop Tarts, 2 bags of potato chips, several soda bottles, Sunny D, Hamburger Helper, Kraft Mac N Cheese. Her total? $73.00.
I step up and load my items. Fresh fruit and vegetables that last my family of 3 for a week (some items even last 2 weeks), various lean meats and fish to last a week, Greek yogurt pops for treats, whole milk, grass-fed cow butter (lasts a month), whole grain chips, green tea, organic apple and spaghetti sauces. My total? $82.00.
NINE DOLLARS MORE than what she spent on JUNK food that will last them 3 or 4 days and will do nothing for their bodies, health, energy levels or longevity – not to mention the waistline. NINE DOLLARS MORE and I could help her feel great, look better, be a better example to her family, and end the trend of obesity. Please know that I am coming from a loving place on this. I see what sickness and low energy and thick waistlines do to families, to marriages and to kids. It breaks my heart. Truly.
So tell me, Friends, is it really too expensive to eat right or are too many of us too lazy or too scared to make a change? Are we as a society too afraid to give up our comfort in order to have a longer and more healthy and fulfilling life? Let me tell you, it’s a hell of a lot more fun to be active than it is to be flipping channels. Are we too stuck to the idea that opening a boxed meal takes less time than preparing a healthy meal?
Here’s a short list of what is really hard in life:
- Poor self-esteem and hating how you look
- Hating how you feel
- Crying in the dressing room
- Beating yourself up mentally when you have a treat
- Marital problems due to fear of intimacy, stemming from the above mentioned
- Not being able to keep up with your kid’s energy level
- Sickness and paying for the ever-rising cost of healthcare
- Anxiety, Depression, Chronic Fatigue
- High Cholesterol, Heart Disease, Cancer, Diabetes
- Having a body part amputated because of the ailments mentioned above
- Being wheelchair-bound or bed-ridden
- Obesity & Childhood Obesity
- Losing a parent or child due to poor health choices
The reality is that every choice we make in life either helps or hurts us. We are either going forward or backward. Up or down. Nothing in life is fixed. Every time we choose something to go into our mouths, it is preventing/killing disease or feeding disease.
No, I am not perfect. Before I was aware of how my choices affected my future, you would find junk food in my cart, too. Even now, you will see me chow down on party foods and tasty southern dishes full of grease. I have cocktails. I make bad food choices when I am emotional. I am by no means the poster child for all things healthy. HOWEVER, I am aware, I make a conscious effort. I live by the 85/15 rule – healthy eating with room for treats. I can teach you how to do it, too.
Why am I telling you this? Because when you know better, you can do better. When you do better, you feel better. When you feel better, you live more fully!
Love and Health,