Wednesday, November 1, 2017

To diet or not to diet?

Have you noticed how all conversation, irrespective of the people holding it, the place it is being held at, or the circumstance, revolves around food. Or more precisely the lack or abundance thereof. Food is the veneer, but the bulk underneath that everyone actually talks about is the weight ( no pun intended) - you are either underweight ( rarely) or over weight. If I look back in my week, I have not met a single person who is happy with the way their body is at present. They are working on reducing the inches, eliminating the fat, gaining muscle - basically doing anything and everything to not be the way they are today, including me.
I talk about pre pregnancy weight and post pregnancy weight, I talk about fat deposits and diets, about long term results and short term effects. We have given birth to a new industry - an industry whose occupation is to tell us the good food as against the bad. And who make it a point to never agree on something as basic as that. Ghee is good, ghee is fattening, cheese is good, avoid cheese like the plague, keto and paleo are fancy new names, GM is the old one. 

When did we become so obsessed with weight and not fitness?
When did we become so discontented with our bodies? And what has fuelled this depressing obsession?
We could point to the media that keeps feeding us the image of thin models as ideals, but the most gullible lot is probably over 30 years of age, an age at which you would think the power of common sense starts taking dominance over the power of glossy prints. 

Isn’t there some way we can learn to accept ourselves, work to improve our fitness levels, but not be completely depressed with the way we are? Wasn’t there a time when we were free of these concerns and had bigger ones to occupy our minds? 
There is absolutely nothing wrong in wanting to look better and fitter, there is absolutely nothing wrong in trying out a diet or two, a little weighing and some measuring, a little sighing and some wishful dreaming, a little jealousy and some admiring as long as we can shrug it off and move on. Move on with or day and our life.
I would love to lose some weight, and many more inches too. But I do not want to thinks do calculate  the calorie intake down to the last cup of tea that I have. The best advise I have received regarding this conundrum is to listen to your stomach - “ your tummy knows best”. If it is full and is sending you signals to that effect, respect it. Respect your body and it’s ability to function and keep you alive, to make you breathe and digest. 
Basically follow what babies do - eat exactly the amount you want and then say no to every single morsel of food presented your way - be it an ice cream or some doubtful looking vegetable soup. And then I think we can lay to rest this never ending conversation and finally start focusing in fitness - to being fit for yourself and for your loved ones. 



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