Friday, October 22, 2010

Weekly Weigh-in: 10/22/2010

Weight:  125 lbs
Body Fat: 19.6%
Measurements: 34"-26"-33.5"-17.5"

I finally got around to reading The Hunger Diaries: How Health Writers Could Be Putting You at Risk article on Marie Claire's website.  Yeah, I know, I'm late to the party on this one but here are my two cents.

What in heavens were you thinking Marie Claire editors? You promote an unhealthy female body image ideal every time you release a magazine with images of emaciated models in it and then you publish an article railing "young, educated women hell-bent on achieving sylphlike physiques."


It's quite a load of rubbish. The author clearly had preconceived notions before she decided to write the article, hence her cherry-picking particular habits of the bloggers.  And yet, that's the nature of media. It's up to you, the end user of said media to discard or retain the opinion presented.

While I dislike the mean-spirited tone of the article, I will admit that after poking through the blogs. she might have a point. Most, but not all, of these women are taking healthy to what I would consider an extreme. I couldn't find a reference to pouring salt on a dessert to spoil it and stop oneself from eating it, so I cannot attest to the truth of that particular citation.

I'm of the opinion that several of these bloggers don't necessarily strive for moderation in their eating habits, and have continued to label foods bad or good. 

Food is neither bad nor good, food is simply food.  Some foods (vegetables, lean proteins, whole grains) may be more nutritionally beneficial to you while others (donuts, candy, white bread) don't pack quite the same nutritional punch.  That doesn't make them bad though, and it doesn't mean you should never eat them again. 

If you label a food as bad or verboten, you are only going to increase the desire you have for it.  Instead, give in a little, have something that isn't as nutritionally beneficial once in a while. You'll reduce the stress you are putting on yourself by making it not forbidden.

You will note that I prefaced this post with my vital statistics, which is consistent with the template of a health blogger. You will also notice that I post more than just my height and weight.  This is because health is not just a number on a scale. Health is the big picture and there are several pieces of knowledge one should have to determine if they are healthy.

I encourage anyone who is starting or maintaining a weight loss journey to know their body fat percentage and to take their measurements in addition to weighing themselves.  You wouldn't buy a car based solely upon an advertisement in a newspaper, so why would you just accept your weight as the sole benchmark of your health?