National Nutrition Month
That’s right, a whole month dedicated to improving our nation’s focus on nutrition and making healthier choices. Developed by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, this awareness month celebrates its 40th year in 2013.
They’re celebrating with an even greater focus on their two goals of encouraging folks to be active and eat healthfully as well as make informed choices.
National Nutrition Month couldn’t come at a better time. Right after the indulgences of the holidays and the bleakest part of winter, weight gain typically shoots up over these months. Activity levels and commitments to new years’ resolutions slump as the scales climb.
Unfortunately, in its latest reports, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have determined that over one third of adults in the United States are obese. In addition to increases in the rate of obesity, preventable diseases which are exacerbated by obesity such as diabetes, high blood pressure and the like have also increased.
One might assume after reading this that Americans just sit on the couch all day and eat nothing but packaged foods. While this may be true of some, it’s certainly not true of everyone. Weight loss plans, gym memberships and the like are going up, and the health and fitness industry has never boomed greater. But in spite of this, folks are still not losing weight. Trust for America’s Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation state that over 50% of adults in the United States will be obese by the year 2030.
Obviously, something isn’t working. And it’s not that people aren’t aware of the problem. Believe me. As someone who has struggled with weight problems, I can promise you that it’s not that folks don’t see the fat. Almost every time you turn on the TV or browse the internet, you’re going to run across some advertisement for a weight loss program or another notice of how dangerous fat is. The Surgeon General released another call to action in which citizens were encouraged to both prevent and decrease weight levels and obesity. Awareness is not the issue here.
What is not working is the typical diet of choice, even when you look at the healthy diets. Many of the promoted diet plans focus on low fats and high carbohydrate consumptions. Unfortunately, such diet plans can lead to significant health problems as well and do not take into consideration the drastic effect which wheat, gluten, and sugar can have on the body.
Wheat alone is filled with amylopectic A. This translates into potent sugar concentrations within the blood stream. In addition to this, sugar consumption increases likelihood of insulin problems in addition to the waistline fat percentage and more. Sugar also inflames the body, and while it may not seem like a big deal, chances are that you’re used to it, and you don’t realize what you should feel like without the inflammation.
Proteins and fat, however, do not turn into sugar when digested. Instead, they become a more efficient energy source. In addition to this, proteins and fats contribute to greater feelings of satiety unlike sugar and wheat which can actually stimulate hunger sensations even when you aren’t hungry in the slightest. The contrast between a low fat high carbohydrate and a high protein low carbohydrate diet are significant.
So for National Nutrition Month, take the time to evaluate your diet. How do you feel? Could you be feeling better? Cutting out these common food sources may seem drastic, but you will be amazed at how much better you feel.
Try it for a month, and you’ll see what it can do for you! You can check this out for even more tips to make National Nutrition Month a month dedicated to improving your health.
“Obesity Rates,” Center for Disease Control and Prevention, http://www.cdc.gov/obesity/data/adult.html (2012).
“Fat and Getting Fatter: U.S. Obesity Rates to Soar by 2030,” Reuters, http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/09/18/us-obesity-us-idUSBRE88HoRA20120918 (2012).