So You’ve Taken On “Diet X”? That’s Awesome.

balanced-diet-image

There has obviously been an uproar in the world of nutrition when it comes to elimination strategies and self-diagnosis’ of intolerances. People are cutting dairy, becoming soy-free, slashing gluten, and going Paleo all over the place. Even restaurants are making an effort to place specific guidelines on their menus to pinpoint which items are most diet-friendly for their customers.

And let me tell you, people are actually mad about this. PLENTY of parodies and responses to these diets, gluten free especially, have been released as a result of these popular diet modifications. People say that they’re unnecessary, that a good portion of the population don’t actually have gluten intolerance, that eliminations only lead to decreased enzyme production, and plenty of other lovely spouts of inputs.

Now, I will say that some of these, hell most of these claims, are probably true.

But, let me ask this question, is it really our business what people are doing with their eating habits?

Specifically, if people are trying to make an effort to eat healthier, why do we need to come down on their efforts? Even if they aren’t based on solid evidence… why?

Note on the Effort, Not the Details

If these people that are tweaking, contorting, and molding their diets into a gluten free, dairy-free, hypoallergenic formula of green juice are STILL managing to meet their daily micro and macro intake, let them. AND EVEN if they aren’t, it’s not like everyone else that doesn’t cut certain things out are taking in all that they need. Behind each and every effort to make a change in one’s diet is care. There is concern being placed in their nutrition enough to initiate a step in the right direction, even if it isn’t supported by science or any knowledge. The point is that they are trying.

And no, it’s not going to be perfect with everyone. Given that most people don’t have the knowledge that a Registered Dietician possesses, people trying to modify their diet won’t initially know what their intake for everything should be. They might not even know of some of the possible health implications that can result from these diets if done incorrectly.

Let People Be

But you know what? They can figure it out, and they can make it work. Who are we as a society in severe need of a makeover when it comes to our eating habits as a whole to criticize those that are trying to make a change. If they are eating better, feeling better, and happy about it, don’t crush them in their strides by telling them that it’s all for nothing. If someone feels crappy when they eat gluten and start to feel better after they cut it, let them. If someone says that eating all their carbs in the form of fruit makes them feel leaner, let them. If someone even says that drinking a green shake on the second Tuesday of every-other month at 8am makes them feel more energized, by god let them do so. Unless someone is showing the signs of an eating disorder or seems to be declining in health, stay out of the way or leave it to the professionals.

Yeah, it’s probably mental. And yes, it probably doesn’t make sense to anyone else but that person, but who the hell cares?

Eat what you want, how you want, and when you want. As long as your eating enough and getting in all your necessary nutrients, do what ever you want to with your meals. Sprinkle fairy dust on that plate and call it “the Peter Pan effect.” If it’s helping you make wiser decisions with food and makes you happy, do it.

Comments

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Rachel Jimenez

An Exercise Science major at USF with a love for dance, food, and sarcastic banter. Oh, and she was gluten free before it was cool. instagram: @sassycalves twitter: @itsraayy

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