490 kcal for a chicken-avocado sandwich. Jogging for losing weight. Want to be thin? Healthy recipes for weight loss. New drink with 0 kcal. Boost your metabolism. Reduce fat immediately. Size 0. Revolutionary diet. Less fat, more protein.
Do you recognise some of the sentences above? I do for sure and I am fed up with it!
Before I will go on with criticising this trend I will explain my point of view regarding fitness and healthy eating. I was not always happy with my weight. During puberty, I gained a few kilos. I was never overweight at that time but having a bit too much is not helping at all if you already have self-confidence problems. Therefore, I tried to lose a healthy amount with just cutting back with sweets and do more sports. This sounds really easy, but I also had my struggles and was frustrated. However, I can say that I am now confident about my weight and my body. But to maintain this I go to the gym once or twice a week and I try to eat healthy. I am not dieting at all. I just try to eat healthy. And for me this means to eat whatever you desire but to pay a little bit attention to the unhealthy food. In other words, I eat sweets, carbs, fat and meat because I do not like the thought of restricting myself.
There are several situations regarding this topic that really worried me:
– As I went one day to the gym there was a young woman. She was slim and had a sporty figure. I overheard a conversation between her and a fitness instructor: “I am looking forward to going to your gym. You have great exercise machines. Oh, I see that you even have a scale, that is wonderful! I really do not want to gain weight. I want to lose more”, she told the instructor. He was a bit stunned and explained: “I am sorry, but when you lift weights regularly you will gain weight. Of course, it will be muscle mass and not fat. But the number on the scale will probably be higher.” The young woman looked shocked: “But I am so happy with my 50 kilos.” I for myself just thought – OMG… It is unbelievable! I do not understand how somebody who has a healthy weight puts so many thoughts into the number the scale reveals. It is not about the number, it is about your own perception of your body and your physical well-being. It is worrying how numbers affect us. There are also several sites which tell you allegedly the weight, height and even the bra size of celebrities. As if Jennifer Lawrence, Charlize Theron and Co. are running to every journalist or paparazzi and stating their figures. The numbers given on these sites are misleading and I am very concerned about all the young teenage girls who are looking them up and comparing them to their own weight just in order to be more like them.
– During my holiday in London, I went a lot to a food store called Pret a Manger. I can highly recommend it as they focus on fresh and organic food and most important they have really tasty stuff, like sandwiches, salads or porridge. However, I was irritated as I saw that they indicated all nutrition facts right beside the price tag of every product they sell. My first thought was: Oh how helpful! But two day later I was frightened of my own behaviour. When I had to choose between two or three meals I most of the time went for the one with fewer calories, even if I probably would have preferred another one. Normally I do not watch out for calories or nutrition facts but as soon as I got the opportunity I took it. It was scary to see my behaviour changing to a one which I never had. I was watching the carbs and because I ate often breakfast and lunch there I was able to calculate my calorie intake very easily.
How could this even happen? I was indeed concerned. I talked to a friend of mine and he also admitted that he was tempted as well although he is the last person who would count calories. This just simply showed me that if you have the chance to look that easy the nutrition facts up you will definitely start watching your intake more. For me, this is just a step further into an abnormal eating habit. It promotes counting calories which in my eyes is a thing people with an eating disorder do. Do not get me wrong, if you count your daily intake because you want to reduce weight in order to be healthier and this is the only way how you are able to control it than it is okay. But if you are already at a healthy weight or even a little bit underweight and you are starting to count calories then this is very unhealthy and might push you into an eating disorder.
– The other thing which upsets me is magazines, filled with recipes, promoting a healthy lifestyle. They advertise low carb menus and low-fat breakfast. And even the free daily newspaper you can get at any station is stuffed with diet tips. Let me tell you something: Every diet works the same – the paleo diet, low or no carb diet, baby food diet, gluten free diet and even the chocolate diet (yes this exists, although it sounds really silly). Each of this diet will help you to lose weight. Yes, you read correctly. Under one requirement: your intake is lower than your energy consumption. Life is complicated but behind losing weight there is this simple formula: eat less than you burn. But sticking to this formula can be hard and it often seems that the implementation of it fails. However, I am so not looking forward to the month of January when every newspaper and magazine is full of diets just because losing weight is a common New Year’s resolution. This last paragraph may appear a little bit aggressive and inapprehensible but all this articles can lead young people to a wrong direction and, therefore, I want to make a strict statement.
These are some of my experiences which I find alarming. How could I better end the post with this sentence: And for all these reasons I am just fed up with this hypocritical healthy lifestyle trend!