Whenever you feel mired in the complexities of a topic, often the best course of action is rerouting to square one. By ensuring a solid grasp on cornerstone facts – especially when that topic is riddled with multiple schools of thought and opinionated ‘experts’ – your capacity to make self-serving decisions that operate in your best interest, based on solid ground for critical thinking and accurate analysis, increases significantly.
“Where are you going with this?” you’re probably thinking, “If I wanted a lecture, I would pick up a textbook, not read a blog.” Noted; and, glad you asked!
All that is to say… every one of us eats every day, but how many of us know how to define ‘nutrition’? How comfortable are you with eating for nourishment, and understanding (or explaining, for that matter) the many contributing factors that make something as basic as eating, also somehow so complex?
Maybe you rely on accredited and knowledgeable health practitioners to know this stuff for you, so that you can concern yourself with the nine bazillion other factors that take over your life – effectively, the nutritional equivalent of “Shut up and take my money!” being “Just tell me what to eat and when to eat it it, and I’ll do it!” This approach is, of course, just fine! Know your strengths and let the people who do this for a living give you guidance. After all, if we all had unlimited time to spend in the kitchen each week, meal prep would be a non-existent concept (and we would be out of business 🙂 ).
If, however, you’re partial to a dose of self-education when it comes to healthy eating, then the following may be of interest:
In The Tao of Eating – One Size Doesn’t Fit All, DeShawn Fairbairn gives a brief, foundational overview of the role of macronutrients and micronutrients, fat soluble and water soluble vitamins, major and minor minerals, psychology of eating, factors that influence and contribute to individual nutrition, and more.
“Nutrition, according to the World Health Organization is: ‘the intake of food, considered in relation to the body’s dietary needs. Good nutrition–an adequate, well-balanced diet combined with regular physical activity–is a cornerstone of good health. Poor nutrition can lead to reduced immunity, increased susceptibility to disease, impaired physical and mental development, and reduced productivity.’
Nutrients are: ‘any substance that plants or animals need to grow.’ Why you eat should be based on the nutrients your body needs to survive and thrive, in whatever environment it exists in for the sake of a healthy lifestyle. Nutrition, by this definition, should be adaptive. The what, how, and where is based on what foods are available to you in your community.”
Give it a read, and let us know – what areas or concepts in nutrition baffle you most? Do you have trouble keeping track of your macros, or does emotionally-influenced eating get you down in a rut? Are you metric driven, or do you eat for the joy of it?