I’ve given a considerable amount of thought to my overall health in the last few years, but especially in the last year. It’s partly due to the changes I see occurring in my hair and skin, though more recently because the nutrition class I’m taking has made me aware of a few things. It’s funny, when I was younger I didn’t give a second thought to the foods I ate or the “exercise” I got. Now that I’m in my early 30s, I’ve come to realize the importance of both. Of course, looking back I can see that I got plenty of exercise without realizing it, yet I didn’t always make the best food choices.
Between walking to and from school (approximately a 3-4 mile trek round-trip), rollerblading, or bike riding around town; I was physically fit. My diet was anything but balanced, however. I consumed untold amounts of junk food any time it was available to me (mainly because there wasn’t much of it in my house). That’s not to say I never made good food decisions, but making better decisions has become a way of life since being diagnosed as having Reactive Hypoglycemia about 13 years ago.
During my high school days, I generally ate four and a half meals a day. Breakfast before school, lunch at school, an early dinner after school, dinner with the family, and a bedtime snack; all of which gives testament to my voracious appetite. Since graduating high school, it has been difficult maintaining a balance. I’ve had highs and lows in my blood sugar, plus, fluctuations in my weight (sometimes gaining 30 lbs. before getting things back under control). My goal this year is to reclaim my balance and to continuously remain aware of my eating and activity habits.
Out of curiosity, which breakfast would you choose to eat if you found both of the following 500 calorie meals set before you? The one on the left or the one on the right?
In the few weeks since classes began, I have gleaned some interesting facts from my nutrition class. For instance, 8 out of 10 Americans experience some level of dehydration daily! Dehydration, even just slightly so, affects many of the body’s processes because cells cease to work at their optimal levels. Many people who experience frequent headaches are simply needing to consume larger quantities of water! Reach for a glass of water before the pain reliever and see what happens. Also, the average American consumes too much meat and refined grains, but not enough fruits and vegetables. There are essential nutrients that can only be found in fruits and vegetables. Oh sure, you can take a supplement, but that isn’t as effective as simply eating more whole foods!
Wow! I was on such a roll while typing that before I knew it I had over a thousand words! (I cut it in half for this blog.) And I haven’t even begun to focus on the fitness aspect of things! I think I may end up making nutrition and wellness the topical focus of my blogs. The area of nutrition consumes me a lot of the time. I find it deeply fascinating how intertwined our health is with the foods we consume!