One of the most popular statements which we are bombarded with from a young is ‘’everything in moderation.’’ Really, the sentiment is lovely and in the right context it can be applicable – but then again, not. The beef I find myself developing with this saying is this – most people do not need to be told twice it is ‘’OK’’ to do something they want to do, and quite frankly everything in moderation is not OK. Whether this coincides with your beliefs or makes you hot under the collar, stay with me.
Without delving into the obvious choices to make a case for debunking such a statement, let’s just stick with food. There are undeniably certain foods which are best left untouched and serve no physiological value to use, which we couldn’t otherwise get from better food sources. Does this mean I am saying become a food Nazi and never enjoy chocolate, fast food and pizza? Absolutely not, that would be unrealistic but just know that when you eat those foods (ideally very occasionally) they are not part of a ‘’balanced lifestyle’’ they are instead just additions to your diet for pleasure, nothing else.
Don’t take this the wrong way, I am not saying we cannot or should not enjoy our diet. In fact, I am saying the complete opposite. If you are going to make a go of living a healthy lifestyle rather than ‘’diet’’ then this is of paramount importance. Certain food groups I would suggest are never needed are sugars (bar some naturally occurring sugars from certain fruits – there are many sugars) and hydrogenated fat. Never, ever have I seen or heard a ‘’real’’ expert tell somebody they NEED more sugar or hydrogenated fat (yes, with diabetics sugar is relevant but we are talking everyday people here with no conditions).
To bring this article to a close, I think the take home message of this rather brash statement is wrong. It tells people it is ‘’OK’’ to do things which quite frankly it isn’t. There is a massive difference between something being ‘’absolutely fine’’ and a ‘’necessary evil’’ which is exactly what so many junk foods have become to every day society. What we should be doing is looking to live healthy every single day, with the odd exception where you can let your hair down a little and enjoy yourself. Of course, the popularity of somebody in my position would be multiplied if I sat here I typed it is ‘’OK to eat junk in moderation’’ but in regards to healthy, it can’t be optimal.
Remember, body composition and health are two very different things – sometimes there is correlation, other times there is not.