Tuesday, April 09, 2013
There are days where I really struggle to stick to my program. Yesterday, someone at the office brought donuts. There were also some Red Vines in the lunch room. The pastries at the coffee shop looked delectable. And when I picked up catfood last night, I walked past some ready-made BBQ chicken that was to die for.
I will proudly say I said, "NO" to all these foods. Most of them really didn't tempt me that much (minus the BBQ chicken - for whatever reason, that one made me pause for a moment). The donuts were ridiculously easy - before, I would have easily succumbed and snagged one. This time, I glanced in their direction and moved on to fill up my water bottle. I didn't even hover over to smell them.
The food industry is just like any business - they want to make money. One way they make money is by cutting back on the quality of ingredients in their foods. That's why you see hydrogenated soybean oil and a lot of iffy "Red#9" in the ingredients list on the backs of some foods.
The other way the food industry makes money is to get us to eat more. That's why food advertising is EVERYWHERE. Strip malls have several food places; Target sells grocery items like milk (not necessarily bad) and candy; and practically anywhere you look, you see an advertisement for some type of food that will taste oh, so good.
The food industry doesn't care if you are diabetic and have high blood pressure; they just want to make sure you went to Burger King for lunch and Red Robin for dinner. The food industry doesn't care about how many medications you are on; they want you to pick up a pint of ice cream on your way home from work.
Now, I'm not necessarily saying that the food industry is evil or corrupt or involved in a government conspiracy - though I wouldn't put it past ANY big business to do so. But I am saying that as a business they have one thought in mind: making profits. If their product is for a healthy food like wheat bran, then their goals (making profits by selling more) and your goals (eating healthier foods) do align. Unfortunately, most big businesses are concerned with making cheap food quickly. Fortunately, in recent years due to media like "Fast Food Nation", businesses are making an attempt to be more health conscious.
Before I lost weight, I was a pawn to the food industry - to food. My life revolved around it - what I was going to eat, where I wanted to go. I tried to make attempts at being healthier - ordering nonfat milk in my latte, eating a sandwich instead of a burger, having a salad instead of fries. But these small things once in a blue moon when I was eating thousands of calories a day weren't going to help me lose weight.
I am learning gradually that my life is more than my next meal. I want to enjoy the outdoors, to have fun with my friends and sister, to be able to walk up stairs and get a good night's rest! I would much rather have the freedom to live my life than a package of Oreo Double-Stuf cookies.
But the Oreos will always be there. And if it isn't Oreos, it's Krispy Kreme or the coffee shop pastries or any of the millions of items that I see every day begging me to eat them. I know they aren't going away; but I am gathering the skills, the confidence to say "No" to them more and more. I am regaining control over my life, taking it away from my food temptations.