Lifestyle at the Cost of Health

Don’t you just love when things you’re learning in one area of your life agree and compliment things you’re learning in another area of your life?

Well, I do, anyway!

It’s always nice when two completely separate books come at the same lesson from different angles and then relate to something I’m learning at church. That is awesome.

Today I had one of those moments.

I’ve been a bit obsessed lately with the blog 100 Days of Real Food. This blog is about a family who pledged to eat only natural, non-processed foods for 100 days in response to Michael Pollan’s In Defense of Food. That was two years ago, and they’re still sticking with it. I’m intrigued by their dedication and the efforts they had to take for it. And I’m seriously considering trying it – probably for less than 100 days, but still. My life has been moving this direction for over a year with the help of my chiropractor, who firmly believes in natural eating, and several other books and films that scared me to death about our food supply. Food, Inc, anyone? In response to that, I started reading food labels and cut out meat nearly completely. When I can afford it, I buy organic which unfortunately isn’t nearly often enough.

There are a few things that concern me: mostly the cost, time, and the availability of local foods. The author of this blog, Lisa Leake, is a stay-at-home mom. Well, I work 40+ hours a week, which puts me at a bit of a disadvantage there. I do not have the time to make all the things she talks about. So I’m going to be scouring her blog for her answer to that question because I’m sure I’m not the only person to ask it in the last two years! As a follow up to their 100-day pledge, they did another 100-days on a budget. I haven’t read that one yet, but will soon so hopefully I will have all the answers to my questions before I try this. Oh, and I ordered In Defense of Food tonight and will start reading it shortly!

My roommate and I are planning to move soon, which seems like a great time to clean on my cabinets of things that don’t follow the rules. Plus, we’ll have more space (a pantry! What a novelty!) so I can make and store things or buy them in bulk if necessary, to help with the time issue. We might even get an extra freezer!

All of this is percolating in my head while I’m browsing Facebook and catching up on people’s lives. I ran across a post talking about how the doctor says this person are pre-diabetic. They go on to say that they knew it was coming but there won’t be any lifestyle changes.

Wait, what?

You KNOW that diabetes is coming but you won’t be making any lifestyle changes? That doesn’t make any sense to me. Wouldn’t you be in a hurry to make changes so that you can be healthy? Does your lifestyle mean that much to you that it’s more important than your health?

And that’s when it hit me. By eating all the stuff we eat because it’s convenient that is exactly what we are doing. What I am doing. I am living a convenient lifestyle at the expense of my health. There may not be symptoms now, but who knows what is happening in my body. With a family history of cancer and a grandmother who was just diagnosed with Parkinson’s, this should concern me. And it does. Isn’t my health worth the inconvenience and the possible embarrassment? Packing my own food for family gatherings? They already think I’m nuts for not eating meat! What’s a little more?

I may not be ready for the big plunge yet, but I am going to take the steps that I can! Reducing sugar and increasing fruits and veggies are all things I can do now, on my budget, to get ready for the jump. So here goes nothing!

Has anyone else made the switch to real food? How was it?