Recently someone directed me to a video series called, The Weight of the Nation. How can we as a nation be so low fat/no fat conscious and yet have statistics that show the indices of obesity keep growing? Indeed, we have a problem - it is the problem of obesity.
While most people look to "quick fixes" such as switching from regular soft drinks to diet soft drinks, eating foods that are purported to be "no fat" or "low fat" instead of controlling portion sizes of what would be considered "normal" food, grabbing for a quick carb-filled snack instead of fresh fruit or some nuts, raisins, carrot sticks, celery, etc. Few people want to pay the price in lifestyle changes that would be required to control the problem of obesity.
I have never had a weight problem. There have been a few times in my life in which I put on a few extra pounds but for the most part I didn't have trouble taking them back off again and maintaining a trim, healthy figure. The hardest was getting the weight back off after baby number 3. But it eventually happened, much to my relief.
I truly believe that several factors contributed to my lack of a weight problem and to the fact that I have never had to deal with the problem of obesity.
1. Portion control. This was part of my upbringing. And it's something I have managed to pass on to my children and my grandchild. Just because something is available doesn't mean it needs to be eaten. I literally can have a chocolate bar in my possession and have it last days or even weeks, breaking off a tiny little piece to nibble on upon rare occasions. Probably one of the reasons I learned portion control was that food was not plentiful at our table when I was growing up. Portions were automatically controlled by outward circumstances. I lived within those limits.
2. No soft drinks. As a child and young adult, I grew up on water, milk and Kool-aid (made with real sugar). Soft drinks simply were not a part of our diets. Even on rare occasions they were a very special treat. As I recall my favorite was "Cream Soda" and we got it in real glass bottles. But I never drank it often enough to develop an addiction to it. Nor did I ever crave it or any other soft drink.
3. Healthy snacks. We always had what we called, "bed lunch." I'm not sure whether this was unique to our family or if there were other families who carried on the same tradition. Bed lunch might have been a bowl of popcorn, a cookie, a couple of crackers, a bowl of ice cream, a malted milk, an apple, a peach or something similar. Even though we now eat quite late and "bed lunch" would be superfluous, I usually have a cup of herbal tea in the evening after supper. Occasionally popcorn (air popped with olive oil and a little salt) - never the microwave popcorn that is not good for anyone, except the companies who sell it.
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Here's to a thinner, healthier you!
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