Friday, February 12, 2010
Hope, Religion and Nutrition
I've just discovered that our moving date has been pushed back another week and as I've been so popular lately (lol!), I thought I'd keep blogging for another week before I set off into the sunset. Plus, I despise moving, so a small opportunity to procrastinate is one that I'll take.
This morning I taught RPM and picked tracks with the theme of "love" - for example, I played "I Could Have Loved You More", "Young Hearts Run Free" and "Heaven", which was great fun. I'm thinking of adding in the remix of a song called "True Faith" tomorrow morning for the Hi-Performance crew.
The concept of "true faith" is something that has been resonating with me over the course of the last few days, faith in my ability to live a fulfilled life, which for me spills over into the area of health and fitness. I believe that there is a strong correlation between religion and the pursuit of health and fitness.
My definition of religion in the broadest sense is how you choose to live your life. For me, Jesus' greatest commandment, "love one another as I have loved you", is the direction in which I try to travel. For me, I find comfort in my faith - that no matter what you do or what happens, that God's love and forgiveness is unconditional ie it's never to late to start becoming what you might have been.... You can substitute the word God with "Universe", "Buddha", "Allah", "Spirit" but the general concept is the same. As we all know, with the practice of religion, there's a huge scope - from the more traditional Religions that we all know to newer branches of religion with different and sometimes extreme ideals - the more radical versions are also known as "cults" - which to me is a pretty extreme word.
I believe it to be the same way with transforming your relationship with health and fitness. So many of us want to cling to a shred of hope when it comes to changing your physique. We can then latch onto anything that sounds good or anything that sounds like we will finally have "the answer". We can look for anything that promises us the hope and care we are after. Often with nutrition and health practices, devotion can escalate to cultish levels, where extreme results are often promoted - remember that woman that claimed to live on air a few years back? More often than not, long term success is based on the less exciting cornerstone of "moderation in all things".
Marketing types have recognized these characteristics for years and have used the notion of giving hope and a fast result to many a hapless subject. Like religious zealots, supplement marketers will use evocative language to promote their own products/ideals. The woman living on air - from memory, was either promoting a book or health camp where people spent thousands of dollars to learn the "secret".
The latest trend from what I can see is terming foods "living" or "dead" - the language is again evocative - what are you going to do if you pick up something that is "dead" or you don't have time to eat "living" food? Surprise, surprise, the answer is in a supplement that (surprise, surprise) the person who coined the phrased is associated with. I must say that from what I've read "living" food seems to reflect healthy, whole food choices whereas "dead" food reflects highly processed "junk" foods that have little or if any nutritional value. It's actually quite a fun way of differentiating between food that is likely to help vs food that is likely to harm - the concept is pretty clever - however the emotions that it possibly invokes if you happen to eat something that is "dead" makes me wonder if this is the continuum:
Eat something dead-> feel guilty for eating dead food --> look for an answer/antidote to stop feeling bad ---> Supplement offered claiming to "fill in the gaps" or whatever ---->consumer buys supplement ---> company profits from consumer's lack of self confidence/belief.
Bottom line is that the power of the dollar rules!
And as for the "Secret", well the truth is that its contents aren't particularly mind blowing - you eat well (and if you're not sure of this, sourcing your info from credible sources), you make training as something natural as brushing your teeth and the hardest component - you learnto equate your choices with honouring yourself and your beliefs as much as you can (this is the lifelong process in learning to live lean and love life - the other two pieces are the easier parts).
My belief is that if I'm buying eggs, I'm for the chooks!
Au revoir for today.