It seems that on a daily basis there is a new, viral article posted about nutrition or health that surfaces on social media sites. The latest I saw was about a woman who was extremely sick, was showing signs of Multiple Sclerosis, stopped drinking diet soda, and was cured. If this woman’s story is true, it does not surprise me in the least, as these types of anecdotal accounts are not uncommon. Stop poisoning oneself, start healing, seems obvious right? On a different note, “breakthrough” studies come out with the headline, “Individuals who eat more vegetables get sick less”, according to a 10-year $50 million study. No shit.
How did humans get so lost when it comes to nutrition? According to The Center for Disease Control and Prevention, childhood obesity has doubled in the last 30 years, while adolescent obesity has tripled. One-third of children aged 6-18 are overweight in this country. This current trend is projecting lean healthy adults to be in a sparse minority within the next 20 years. My point is that many Americans have lost their way when it comes to their diets, and are now passing this ignorance down to their children.
Technology advances in shipping and mass producing food can go both ways when it comes to our health: we now have access to pretty much every processed, chemicalized food known to man. A quick peak in the middle aisles of a grocery store illustrates this. But, now more than ever, we also have access to wonderful and healthy foods from all over the world. With this access we can create our own perfect diet from so many healthy foods to choose from.
We now know we have access to amazing foods. The second piece is our daily workouts : we have a regular and consistent platform to test how our body feels under a large array of health variables. In other words, we can experiment on ourselves to find what foods and food combos work best for us. For example, I know that if I consume dairy, I will wake up the following morning and have a stuffed up nose. My workouts will suffer because breathing is hindered, due to excess mucous. Through trial and error, I know that my workouts are more optimal if I don’t consume dairy. I also know my body runs better if I eat more fats, take fish oil, and drink my super smoothies.
CrossFit workouts create a heightened body awareness. You truly know and can describe the suffering in the final minutes of a 20-minute AMRAP. When we consistently go to the threshold of our physical limits, we learn a whole lot about our body’s capabilities. My proposal is to use this heightened awareness in other areas of our lives, more specifically, how every food we pass through our mouths effects us. If we can do this, no amount of studies or breakthroughs in nutrition will ever surprise us. We already know that diet coke makes us feel crappy and eating clean makes us feel incredible. If we can slowly learn which foods promote our health and which hinder it, we can begin to customize our very own, perfect dietary blueprint for life. To me, there is nothing more valuable.
CrossFit Redondo | 1206 S. Pacific Coast Highway, Redondo Beach, CA 90277