I know that I normally keep it light on my blog, but today’s topic is too serious not to address. I saw this article shared on Facebook several times,
https://highline.huffingtonpost.com/articles/en/everything-you-know-about-obesity-is-wrong/. I will warn you that it is quite lengthy, very intense and could be triggering, but it is SO worth the read and the knowledge gained from the perspective and information given. Please take the twenty minutes it requires to read it. (Pretty please.) There is SO much I could expand upon, but I think this post would turn into a novel instead of a blog. So I want to focus on one quote in particular that stood out to me as a nutrition coach living in America.
“Diet is the leading cause of death in the United States, responsible for more than five times the fatalities of gun violence and car accidents combined. But it’s not how much we’re eating--Americans actually consume fewer calories now than we did in 2003.”
Guys, this really hits home a hard truth. It’s not HOW we’re eating, it’s WHAT we are eating.
This is what is causing a national health crisis and this is what is literally killing us. I don’t mean to sound dramatic. I don’t mean to use scare tactics. But, the fact of the matter is most Americans are eating food that isn’t food. It is so processed that it has been stripped of its nutritional value and, therefore, cannot sustain our day-to-day life. Empty calories leave us feeling a hunger that is insatiable and causes our bodies to cling to extra weight because we feel deprived of viable fuel.
This being said, ironically, the thing I really love most about macro-tracking is that it doesn’t vilify any food. When you track macros, there are no individual foods or food groups that are “off-limits.” In fact, IIFYM is an acronym synonymous among folks who track macros and it stands for “if it fits your macros.” Meaning, so long as it fits your macros, eat it! Macro-tracking is all about learning how to fuel your body, find balance and eat the proper ratio of proteins, carbs and fats to sustain your daily activity.
This also means being able to eat whatever food you want, including Cheetos or Twizzlers, etc. But people who do my program quickly learn that eating nutrient-dense food (not highly processed food) is what is optimal to keep up with their workouts and life in general. Tracking intake of protein, carbs and fats helps my clients learn moderation when it comes to treats...which, let’s be real are almost always highly processed. Many tell me how much better they feel eating this way because it is a well-rounded lifestyle and they are able to really taste and savor treats when they do choose to have them.
Lastly, hands down, the most rewarding part of teaching people how to track their macros is that SO many of my clients lose weight eating MORE calories. Yes, you read that right. I generally coach my clients on how to eat MORE calories. Calories that are not empty, but rather, important macronutrients filled with much-needed micronutrients (think vitamins and minerals). Most of my participants tell me they never even realized how hungry they always were and how life-changing it is to finally feel “full.”
This is why I do what I do. I want all of you to have a full life. Not a heavy life. There is a difference. Heaviness is burdensome and, as this article denotes, misunderstood and shamed. I don’t give a flip about your weight, I care about helping you to rid yourself of that feeling of heaviness that can infiltrate your whole being and potentially cause death. I want you to feel full, whole and empowered. I want your life to be full. Of nutritious foods, strength, positive habits and self-love. Let’s get busy living. Not dying. We can do better, America.