What should we eat?
Yesterday my mate snuck me into a nutrition seminar series entitled ‘What should we eat?’ Well known speakers from David Gillespie, Sarah Wilson, Dr Ron Ehrlich and Costa Georgiadis as well as farmers, paleo bloggers, and exercise therapists were all pushing a Paleo ‘low-carb diet’.
The message of the day was undoubtedly EAT LOW CARB. Some of the talkers blindly regurgitated facts from the more well known authors on the subject, which highlighted the infancy of this subject. What was missing was a broader discussion or examination on the relationship contemporary society has with food.
The more rehearsed and knowledgable talkers stayed away from saying ‘low-carb’ but talked about the dangers of diets founded in sugars, and necessarily so. The commercialism of health has turned a health movement into a dietary fad. Sceptics are salivating at the mouth, waiting to tear yet another diet apart. We must remember that it is not about eating ‘low-carb’ it is about eating foods we as humans have evolved to eat, and matching your intake to your lifestyle.
Clients and groups in the morning meant i was a few hours late (normal by my social standards), so I missed the headliner flown out from the US, Jimmy Moore. Having lost 180 pounds i was keen to hear what this fella had to say about nutrition. But being a yank and having his cheque signed by ‘low carb down under’ and ‘Nourishing Australia’ meant that i was sceptical as to the commercial message of the day. Never-the-less, I later got to hear him talk and personally met with him. His knowledge surrounding low carb eating was solid, mainly based around a paleo understanding of nutrition. A lovely man.
Two of the talks that i was in time for were the ones i was really excited about. David Gillespie, author of the infamous ‘Sweet Poison’, was the first. Costa Georgiadis, gardening and media personality was the second.
David Gillespie, an ex-lawyer, is know for the meticulous nature in which he has examined sugar and fat based studies. David is leading Australia’s charge against government supported food pyramid eating, and necessarily chronic lifestyle related disease. Highly recommended, easy to understand reading are his books ‘Sweet Poison’ and ‘Big Fat Lies’. His chat was on the dynamic between glucose vs fructose and the resulting metabolic disorders that follow, including Fatty Liver Disease, and Chronic Kidney Disease, responsible for 1 in 7 hospital admissions.
Costas’ talk was more entertaining, less consolidated but with probably the most discrete but important message of the day. Make sense? Probably not. Talking about supermarkets being super-marketing and produce now being products, from the gardeners perspective, he views most peoples diets full of addictive substances embedded in our food supply for the purpose of making money for others – something i couldn’t agree more with. The paradox of convenience in shopping at supermarkets, buying products that are making us not only fat, but more susceptible to illness and early death was tied into our consumerist nature, and the diss-ease of contemporary lifestyles. I will be trying my best to help Costa out at the local community garden in Bondi, and doing anything to spread his message.
I walked out feeling different. I had a new found love of my herb garden, $100 worth of books, including one on a holistic approach to female cycles – i know… FREAK!, a new excitement for what i do, but a nagging feeling. Catylsed by trainer Aaron Mckenzie and Coasta’s talk, was this feeling of despair. Helping clients 1-on-1 is great, but it is largely up to the client as to the results they want. If they want results, they will work closely with me to change aspects of their lifestyle, if they don’t they will show up to training, make a few excuses, get some results, but inevitably old habits will die hard. The stressors of work, failed relationships, a social life revolving around a glass of wine and no time to sit and think, mean that we are battling the bulge feeling isolated and alone. The values of community have largely been forgotten, especially when it comes to health. People want to be part of something, this is why they join gyms or talk about the latest detox they are on. However, for progress to be lasting, for results to stick, we need to surround ourselves with people who want the same thing. Gyms and trainers, nutritionists and doctors need to form communities of education and exercise as well as being examples of excellence. You need to enjoy your healthy routine.
We could start by getting out of bed on a Sunday at 830 and coming to the Marickville Markets with me, I guarantee that not only will you have the best Sunday you’ve had in a while, but your diet will necessarily become healthier and you happier as you meet the farmers that produce the produce.
Just some food for thought. Be happy!