Today I read two sentences in the New York Times that sum up perfectly the philosophy of SassyHealthySixty. They come from New York Times writer Tara Parker-Pope’s excellent blog, Well. http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/
Healthy living doesn’t happen at the doctor’s office. The road to better health is paved with the small decisions we make every day.
For the most part, we know what to do: Exercise (and exercise some more), don’t smoke, cut down on saturated fats and sugar, add more whole grains and vegetables, limit animal protein, wear sunscreen, drink lightly, get sleep, and take vitamin D3. We’ve been hearing this advice for years, so why is it so hard to put it into practice? It took me up till my early 50s to begin exercising faithfully and wearing sunscreen, and I still struggle with whole grains. I *heart* good white bread.
I follow the rest of the recommendations reasonably well, but that saturated fat and sugar thing gets me every time. Here are some reasons why:
1. I live in the South, where sugar and fat are two of the 4 basic food groups. I am genetically programmed to never pass up fried chicken, biscuits, layer cake, or pie.
2. I’m a food editor for a magazine devoted to Southern food. If you can resist the incomparable baked goods, barbecued ribs, macaroni and cheese, potato salad, deviled eggs, chicken salad, and brisket that come out of our test kitchen, you are a better woman than I. More to the point, it’s my job to taste these things. I could only take a bite or two, but my will power often fails in the face of such delicious foods, most of which I rarely make at home.
3. I am addicted to ice cream. It’s my cuddly blanket.
So my decisions are not always good, especially where food is concerned, though I try to balance the bad stuff with plenty of salad and a wholesome breakfast. Maybe the balance is what helps keep my weight in check, or maybe it’s just my good metabolism. Also, I work out a lot.
But enough about me.
Tell me what are the best and worst decisions you make about your own health. I’d love to know. What would you do to change them? Maybe we can inspire one another to do better. But don’t even try to make me give up ice cream.