Monday, January 26, 2015

Image Distortion: How Fitness Pictures May be Telling the Wrong Story

Warning:  I didn't pull any punches with this post.  I've been stewing on this topic for awhile, listening to One Direction and Taylor Swift all day, and now I'm all riled up.  

We've all heard this saying before:
"A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words."
But, what if all of those words were a lie?

Specifically, what if those pictures in that email you received from your favorite diet guru were not from clients he/she actually worked with?  Or the pictures on the advertisement for your gym were not created within those four walls?

In an age where we have endless access to "free" images ranging from inspirational to inappropriate, a single click of the mouse can send a picture to every time zone and latitude in the world.

Which is great for people who are looking to start a brand, spread a message, or share an idea.

But on the other side of the coin, we see people looking to get InstaFamous or take credit where credit is not due.

I have to tell you- I see this all the time in the realm of health and fitness.

A gym puts images of muscle bound beasts and beast-ettes they have not programmed, trained, or produced.  A diet program swipes a video of someone who has not used or endorsed their program and posts it on Facebook, implying an endorsement.  A magazine uses a stock image of  a fitness model, but then suggestively infers results that are not typical in the fine print.

It happens.  All.  The.  Time.

And it hacks me off.

Sometimes Karma gets even...

To be clear, I firmly believe that using someone's image as your own is a form of plagiarism.  You know, plagiarism- that thing that gets people kicked out of college and ruins their future.  Even if it's done accidentally, it's still considered plagiarism.

Unfortunately, in the school of life,  there is no professor to keep us honest.  But sometimes Karma catches up.  

Are you familiar with Rich Froning?  He is the four time CrossFit Games champion and trains specifically to CrossFit modalities.  While "be ready for the unknown and unknowable" is a common mantra used by many Crossfitters, Rich Froning has not spent his time figuring out how to train for a triathlon.

Needless to say, this image is no longer on Outside Magazine's Twitter feed.

Do you follow Jason Sieb?  If not, you should.  His approach to weight loss is anti-starvation and anti-body hatred.  An image of one of his most famous clients was used in an email blast from trainer recommending the exact opposite of what he teaches.  And not only that, but this trainer watermarked the image as her own.  Um, what?

There was an apology issued on Facebook, but that apology is no longer posted on the newsfeed of said trainer.

But not all that glitters is gold.  

Those were examples of images that were used without permission.  The other side of this is when stock images of fitness professionals are used to represent an outcome of a process, methodology, or plan that flat out did not produce those results.  This applies to both fitness models and professional athletes who are compensated for the way their body looks or performs.

While these images are used with permission, they are often misleading:

  • This is most often their full time job.  If they don't look or perform a certain way, they don't get paid.  Just like if you don't turn in that spreadsheet on time, you don't get paid.  
  • I would argue that most fitness models and professional athletes are genetically pre-disposed to a certain body composition.  I'm not saying that these folks don't work hard, I'm saying they have a body that has an easier time looking and moving a certain way.
  • Fitness models usually only look their best for a set number of hours and that will be timed with their photo shoot.  Mean they are usually dehydrated, carb depleated, and undernourished when that photo captures every muscle and vein in their abs.
  • Testing for performance enhancing drugs is good, but it's not that good.  Comparing yourself to a professional athlete without being willing to at least entertain the thought of taking under the table supplements is short sighted.  

To be clear, I am not degrading or lessening the work of these professional athletes and fitness models.  They've gotten to where they are because they have mastered their field.  I am calling out fitness and nutrition "experts" peddling a result they did not produce.

This frustrates me because I think most of the general population understands (or would if it was explained to them) that both performance and aesthetic goals are impacted by everything else they have going on in life.

But we all know sex sells.  The image of a size two fitness model will get more hits than a mom of four who is well rested, happy, mobile, healthy, and living a balanced life.

The Power of Discernment 

So how do you know if the person you are seeking for advice, programming, or gym space is being completely honest about what they can do for you?

Below are three questions to you can ask before signing a contract or giving away any of your hard earned money.  As with most things, there are shades of gray, so just be sure to listen to your BS meter.  

1. Is that person on your advertisement one of your clients?  Ideally you would want them to say "Heck yeah!  That person is the pride and joy of my program!"  But even if they aren't, it may not be all bad.  For example, professional photos are expensive and stock photos are not, so maybe they are a start-up and need something visual (hey, I've done this when I needed some pictures of zombies).

2.  Are these results typical?  One plan or exercise will not work the same way for everyone, but all other things being equal, we should expect to see a common result.  If I were asking this question, I would be looking for someone to be able to explain factors that impact results.

3.  Am I able to customize or modify your program?  There is a fine line between modifying and flying off the rails while expecting certain results.  For example, if I put you on a meal plan and told you that you could expect results while enjoying one splurge meal per week and you were pretty sure I MEANT once per day...  welllllll.....

We're visual creatures, so using pictures to convey a message is incredibly effective and powerful.  There is nothing wrong with using an image to send a message... as long as that message is one that the disseminator can claim as their own.

I understand that things happen and images can be shared with the best of intentions, but incorrectly.  Regardless, if someone is showcasing someone else's hard work, they should have the decency to give credit where credit is due.

Don't let the image of your goals be distorted by someone looking to make a quick buck.  Those results may be anything but typical.


What do you think?  Is this practice a party foul or no big deal?  Have you seen this yourself?

Monday, January 19, 2015

The One Habit of Highly Healthy People

Ok, I'm going to start today's post on a negative note, but it will get better.  I promise.

Did you know that experts estimate only 8% of people who set a New Year's resolution will achieve it?  

That means there is a 92% failure rate for New Year's Resolutions.  Now, I'm not a betting person, but I would never take those odds.  Ever.  

So what if there was one habit that if you developed and stuck to, could keep you in the 8% this year?

But I'm doing a group challenge....

I'm not trying to rain on your parade, especially if you are part of a 7/21/30 day fix/detox/challenge (and if you're not, I bet someone on your Facebook feed is).  Don't misunderstand me- I think it's great that you've joined a community of like-minded people to help you get started.

But I'm going to call a Spade a Spade today, so consider what I have to say advice for when your event ends. 

I would bet you dollars to grain-free, gluten-free donuts that there is one habit that you have neglected, failed to develop, or will let fall off the radar once you've lost your motivation:

Meal Planning

How do I know this?  From experience.

Most people who I meet that feel like they are not making progress towards their goals or tell me that eating healthy is too expensive are not meal planning.  

Meal planning is the act of writing out a menu for a set period of time, with a grocery list, while taking your schedule into account.  I recommend weekly meal planning, but depending on your schedule and the number of mouths to feed, it may work for you to plan twice per week or even every other week.

You may have followed someone else's meal plans in the past and that is a great starting point.  But what I'm referring to is developing the ability to write your own meal plans.

And quite frankly, not meal planning rips the control of your healthy right out of your hands and gives it to your boss, kids, and schedule.  All of which, if we're being honest, do not consider your health their priority.  


A 2007 study from Mintel found the top five reasons people do not eat healthy as:
  1. Availability
  2. Cost
  3. Confusion
  4. Time Constraints
  5. Taste Concerns
Meal planning addresses all five of these reasons:
  1. Availability:  I recognize that food deserts do exist in this country.  But for most of my readership, I believe availability refers to vending machines and fast food restaurants.  If you know that your cubicle sits in the middle of a fast food jungle, planning lunches and snacks will create a ready-to-eat nutrient oasis.
  2. Cost:  This one is major on multiple levels.  First of all, feeding a family of four from restaurants and take-out may cause you to take out a second mortgage.  But more importantly, consider this: According to the NRDC, the average American throws away 25% of the food and beverages they buy.  This costs families between $1300 and $2200 annually.  In fact, Americans throw away 10 times as much food as the average southeast Asian.  Seriously.  These statistics make me want to sit down and punch myself in the face.  Meal planning accounts for what is already in your fridge and keeps you from letting food go bad.  
  3. Confusion:  The grocery store can be an overwhelming and unforgiving place.  Especially if you go in hungry or without a game plan.  Walking into the grocery store without a list is akin to driving across the country without a map.  You may get to where you need to be, but it will take twice as long and be three times as expensive.
  4. Time Constraints:  It may seem counter intuitive to have to carve out 2 hours every Sunday to meal plan and grocery shop.  However, what you're losing on the front end, you'll save on the back end.  What if you didn't have to make three different stops at the grocery store throughout the week.  Or spend 20 minutes sitting in the drive thru every night.  It adds up.  
  5. Taste Concerns:  The best thing about meal planning is that you get to create the menu.  So if you don't like steamed asparagus because it tastes like a wet tree (true story), you don't have to buy or cook steamed asparagus.  

If you're not currently a meal planner, the thought of writing it out may be overwhelming.  No worries...

6 Simple Steps to Pain Free Meal Planning

1.  Block time every week to write out a meal plan.  For me, it's Sunday afternoon.  For you, it might be Tuesday night or Thursday evening.

2.  Review your schedule for the week.  Do you have a work function Monday night and soccer games Wednesday night?  Plan for those.  It may mean cooking extra so you have leftovers or reviewing a restaurant menu ahead of time so there are no surprises.

3.  Inventory your fridge and pantry.  Check all the drawers for any veggies that may go bad or hidden leftovers to use for lunch.  Incorporate those in your meal plan.  

4.  Write it out.  Find your favorite recipes, a few new ones, and write out a meal plan.  You can use paper, a white board, or a chalk board.  Keep it simple or make it fun.  Either way, just do it.

This is Eleanor, our meal planning pig.  Isn't she fun??

5.  Make a shopping list.  While you're writing out recipes, write down what you need so you don't forget anything once you get to the store.  

6.  Execute.  You've done the hard work, now follow through.  Don't let the lure of an unexpected office lunch derail your planning.  

And that's it.

I won't lie- it's a commitment and it may be very painful at first.  And it may require a mindset shift.  But if you really are serious about big changes this year, commit to making meal planning a priority. 

If you 're still struggling with what to put in that meal plan, check out my eBook, Fuel or contact me to learn more about personal health coaching!



So what about you.  Do you meal plan?  Do you wish you did?  Can you commit to this for 2015?

Friday, January 9, 2015

Food Friday: Brussels Sprouts

Food Friday is my weekly homage to my favorite thing on Earth- FOOD!  I haven't always felt this way.  I used to view food as the enemy.  But no longer!  I love food- it helps me meet my performance goals, nourishes my body, and most importantly keeps me healthy so I can make a difference in this crazy world.  So every Friday I will be posting about one of my favorite foods.  It may be a plant or animal, single ingredient or recipe, or whatever I feel like (hey- it's my blog afterall).
If there is a particular food you would like me to talk about, recommend it in the comments! 

 Brussels Sprouts

Hold it.  How many of us rallied against our parents to keep Brussels Sprouts off our plate?  Because really, cabbage is suspect all by itself... but mini smelly cabbages are downright offensive.  In fact, a 2008 Heinz survey ranked Brussels Sprouts as the most hated vegetable in America.

I get it.  I hated Brussels Sprouts before I even tried them.  What kind of Regina George vegetable has a reputation like that?

Well, Brussels Sprouts are very, ah, fragrant when overcooked.  The traditional method of cooking was to boil them- assuring they were mushy and smelly.

But just like thick rimmed glasses and baggy sweaters, what's old is new again.  Brussels Sprouts are back in a big way.  Restaurants are making a name by making them tasty.  Hipster foodies buy them locally.  And of course, they're Paleo.

Brussels Sprouts pack a punch of nutrients and are super easy to make.  So if you haven't already, get daring and add some to your meal plan today!

P.S.  Does anyone else say Brussel Sprouts??  I did... until about two days ago.  It's really Brussels Sprouts.... because modern versions were cultivated in Belgium!


  • Super high levels of Vitamin C and K
  • A good source of Folate, Manganese, Fiber, and Vitamin B6   
  • Provides protection against cancer because of a compound called glucosinolate.  All cruciferous veggies contain this compound, but Brussels Sprouts have the most.  
  • Low carbohydrate- one gram per serving


Readily available in most grocery stores, Brussels Sprouts are usually located by the big cabbage.  Do you think that makes them feel inadequate?

But really, buy and cook them fresh.  Frozen Brussels Sprouts tend to be bitter and slimy.


I typically cut the sprouts in half or even quarter them.  Be sure to chop off the hard white stem portion at the bottom.  If the outer leaves are looking a little yellow, you can peel them away.  And with all veggies, wash them well.


Let me say this once...

Roasting Brussels Sprouts is the way to go.

Some people like them steamed, but I think that makes them taste like mini-cabbage mush balls.  So if that's your jam, go for it.  A good roast gives them crispy outer leaves and well cooked inside.  You can also peel the leaves and make chips.  

You could also skip the cooking and slice them to make a winter slaw!


Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Ham

These sprouts have just the right about of crisp and are a great side dish for anything from ribs to chicken to hamburgers.  Or by themselves as a snack!


1 lb Brussels Sprouts
1/2 Cup Chopped Ham (or sub 4 pieces of chopped bacon)
2 TBS Coconut Oil (melted)
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp sea salt


1. Pre-heat the oven to 400 Degrees F.

2. Cut the white stalk off of the Brussels Sprouts and cut in half

3.  Mix Brussels Sprouts with chopped ham, coconut oil, sea salt, and pepper.

4. Spread evenly on a baking sheet.

5.  Bake for 35-40 minutes until crisp on the outside.

6.  Serve immediately and enjoy!




What do you think?  Do you like Brussesls Sprouts or would you rather put your head through a wall?  If you love them, share your favorite recipes in the comments below!

Friday, December 26, 2014

Seven Simple Steps to Cure a Food Hangover

  The food hangover.  We've all experienced one.  Too much YOLOing with cookies, ice cream, chocolate, chips, ice cream, candy, cheese, bread, ice cream and blah blah blah.  Beyond the guilt of over indulging and your jeggings feeling a little tighter, you feel like complete C.R.A.P.

  Food hangovers can come in the form of bloating, stomach aches, gastrointestinal distress, fatigue, headaches, and mental incoherence.  Our bodies aren't used to digesting certain foods (aka Highly Digestive Foods) in such high amounts, so our entire system goes haywire.  

  The key to recovering from a food hangover is to replenish critical systems and give your digestive tract a break.  These remedies are real food approaches.  You could always take an antacid, but we in the holistic community think they do more harm than good.    

  1. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate:  If you hopped off the whole food bandwagon for the sugar express, you are probably dehydrated at some level.  Aim for at least an ounce of water per pound of body weight.  I always feel so much better after a few glasses of water!
  2. Broth:  Broth, specifically homemade from animal bones, contains gelatin.  Gelatin aids and helps repair digestion.  You can use broth to make soup, cook veggies, or just drink it straight.
  3. Ginger or Peppermint Tea:  Both Ginger and Peppermint are known for stomach relief, specifically for pain or distress.
  4. Well Cooked Starchy Veggies: Such as sweet potatoes or squash.  The soluble fiber will help things move through a bit easier.  
  5. Meditation: If we are stressed out, digestion will be one of the first systems to be put on the back burner.  Highly Offensive Foods stress our body.  Being intentional about not stressing out, even if it's just for ten minutes, will help our digestion get back on track.  
  6. Avoid even more offensive foods:  This includes sugar, alcohol, and caffeine, including coffee.  Remember, we want to give our body a break, so a little hair of the dog may do more harm than good.  
  7. Time:  The old saying goes "Don't do the crime if you can't do the time."  You've worked hard to get rid of the toxic garbage in your life.  But now your body considers certain food toxic and it takes time to get it out.  
  Regular probiotics will help build a bullet proof stomach so bad food doesn't hit you quite as hard.  Of course I am a fan of whole food sources of probiotics such as kombucha, raw sauerkraut, or kimchee.  But if you do not have access to these foods or they gross you out, you can find a good supplement from your local health food store.  

  Remember that the best way to avoid a food hangover is to avoid the food in the first place.  But you and I live in the real world and ice cream is just so gosh darn good.  When you do find cause to induldge, do it and move on.

  Because ya know, YOLO and all that.



I'd love to hear about your real food remedies for a toxic food hangover!  Please share in the comments!

Monday, December 8, 2014

Why I Oppose the Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2014

Have you heard of the Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2014?  You may have heard it by it's alter ego name- the Denying Americans the Right to Know Act, or otherwise shortened to the DARK Act.  No matter what you call it, it refers to a piece of legislation introduced in April 2014 by Rep. Mike Pompeo of Kansas.  The bill (H.R. 4432) was created to amend the existing Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act pertaining to foods that have been in some way bio-engineered (OR food that would be considered GMO by most people).  

My goal when sharing information with all of you is to avoid playing off your fears and give you a thoroughly researched overview.  For that reason, I have gone directly to the source and read the bill.  Before you form an opinion about any of this, I encourage you do do the same.  You can find both a summary and a full text version at or just by clicking here.  


At the surface, a bill called the Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act sounds awesome.  Who doesn't want accurate labeling to keep us all safe?  However, after reviewing the H.R. 4432, I cannot justify support for such a far reaching and imposing piece of legislation.  

To be clear, this law would specifically pertain to plant matter with altered DNA (Section 101, 1-3).  This has nothing to do with the crossbreeding argument, my friends.  

I've pulled out the specific details that I feel create cause for concern and paraphrased for those of you short on time.  I also included the section of the H.R. 4432 where the specifics can be found:

  • The entire process of pre-market (before it's available for sale) GMO labeling would take place at one of the highest levels of our government.  Meaning that the manufacturer of said product would present its' case to the Secretary of Health and Human Services through the USDA's voluntary consultation process. (Section 102, B).  
Why this is an Issue:  Excuse my skepticism, but I've yet to be amazed by any government controlled entity or process.  Especially when it comes to the food system or my health.  Through this new process, the Secretary of Health and Human Services would have direct control in determining if the end product is genetically different enough from the organic form to be considered genetically altered.

  • The individual rights of the states would have NO authority to mandate individual labeling pertaining to GMOs (Section 104, B).  
Why this is an Issue: The idea of centralized control of our food system is incredibly frightening.  One office in our entire nation would have complete control as to whether or not you are allowed to know if a product was genetically modified... or more accurately, genetically modified ENOUGH to be labeled.

  • If the Secretary of Health and Human Services decides that the product is not genetically modified enough to to warrant a GMO label, the product can be labeled as "Natural" (Section 201).  
Why this is an Issue:  Sorry, but.... WHAT?  Ok, let's think of it this way...  the only reason a food would go through this entire process is because the DNA has been altered in the first place.  So if it's not TOO generically modified, it is totally acceptable to slap a "Natural" label on the food.  Hmpf.  

  • Individual states would have NO authority to say a manufacturer cannot market these products as "Natural" (Section 202).  
Why this is an Issue:  Again, this is allowing one office of the government to control a label that, at a glance, implies that a product is healthy.  I just can't understand why this is a good idea...

Guys, this is an issue.  I can assure you that no matter what you think is the healthiest way to live our lives, the answer does not lie with giving total control of labeling to the federal government.

My typical response to the GMO argument is to stop buying processed food and go straight to your farmer.  However, someone could write an entire book on the amount of damage that has been done by USDA policy being dictated by personal and corporate agendas.  Ohhhhhh wait... Nina Teicholz already has

In my humble opinion, this policy is another misstep in the long line government oversight into our health and wellness.  

What Can You Do:

There is a hearing on H.R. 4332 on Wednesday, December 8th.  Below is a list of congressmen and women who will be sitting in on this hearing.  Please note this is not up for a vote... YET.  But your voice NOW can set the tone for the entire trajectory.  If you have an opinion on GMO labeling and the rights of individual states, please call before Wednesday.  

A note to the haters:  

Before the haters jump in to claim that I am an ignoramus for not knowing that there have been no clinical trials proving any danger in GMOs.... I KNOW.  The point of this write-up is not to tell you that GMOs are dangerous.  Besides enough anecdotal evidence to fill the internet, the is quite frankly no hard scientific evidence to support that assertion.  

My case is that I have no interest in consuming Genetically Modified Organisms.  And as an American consumer, I have a right to know how a food product has been manufactured before I put it in my body.  Because, ya know, 'Murica and all that.  


Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Own It (Don't Earn It)

Let me ask you a question....

Are you planning a Day-Before-Thanksgiving-Killer-Workout?  Maybe you've already done one?

That's awesome- I think in as far as recovery days, Thanksgiving is probably one of the best strategies.  All the protein and carbs will repair your fatigued body and will probably set you up for some massive progress in the days following.

But here's the thing....  did you tell yourself you're doing this workout so you can earn your feast?  You want pumpkin pie, so you're going to log an extra 20 minutes on the treadmill.  Gluten free rolls?  That's an extra 50 burpees.  And the mashed potatoes and gravy.... those are totally worth starving yourself leading up to the meal.

In fact, you've planned your dinner mitigating workouts down to the calorie.  That turkey doesn't stand a chance against you.

You've earned it.

Whoa.  Whoa  Whoa.  Let's slow down a minute.

From where I'm standing, you've turned your feast into a one way ticket to crazy town.

You probably know from experience that one meal will not make you fat, just like one meal will not make you lean.  Your body composition is directly related to long term habits, not a mega meal with your friends and family.

Approaching Thanksgiving, or any holiday for that matter, with the "I've earned it" mentality inevitably creates guilt and anxiety.  This is supposed to be a meal filled with joy, love, and thanks.

Additionally, the "earning it" mentality is a slippery slope.  Today you're trading pie for burpees.  Tomorrow you're trading ice cream for stationary bike sprints, bread for kettlebell swings, and cake for miles on the trail.  Before you know it, you're on a never ending treadmill with a pay-to-play mentality for nutritionally devoid food.

And if you're feeling pretty bad about yourself now, I am just going to kick you while you're down....  Watch your daughters, because they are watching you.  It's totally acceptable to teach your children to eat right and move well, but this behavior will associate food with guilt and anxiety, which has a high probability of turning into disordered eating down the road.

So, now that I've ruined your entire season, what to do?

Here's a thought....

Own It.

Instead of excusing away every bite you take, approach it as if you have complete control of what you are putting in your mouth.  Because newsflash....  you do.

Recognize that every forkful you eat of ANY food has a serious implication on your body.  It could turn you into a super hero or a trench dwelling fun sucker.  Appreciate the good food for the nutritive value.  Respect the bad food for keeping you sane.

You know how your body works better than anyone.  I know I need a high fat, high protein breakfast or else I run out of energy by 11am.  I know that my homemade Kombucha is like deploying reinforcements for my immune system.  And a sweet potato for dinner helps me kick it into high gear for a 5:30am workout.

I also know that sometimes I need some frozen custard to nourish my soul.  I can promise you that I am under no illusion that I've earned it.  Even if I do 50 extra burpees, the spike in insulin is still going to keep me from my goals.  And exactly how have I earned my place is a super wealthy, free country with frozen custard stands on every corner?  And down the slippery slope I go...

Nourishing your body can come from nutrients from food, regeneration from sleep, and the (occasional) indulgence of frozen custard.  But feeling guilty about it can block that benefit.  And then we're none the better.

Own It.

You can approaching Thanksgiving one of three ways.

You can follow a strict set of rules to make sure you don't feel guilty meanwhile making yourself crazy and everyone around you feel bad.

You can go gangbusters and eat every yummy morsel in sight, but hit the hay that night feeling defeated.  Only to get up the next day and kill yourself at the gym trying to work it off.

Or you can respect your food.  Give thanks to the farmer who raised it, your mother-in-law who cooked it, and your nieces who fill the whole day with smiles.  Give thanks that you are off work, with family, in warm house with a table full of food.  Stop balancing your caloric checkbook and enjoy the moment.  Then the next day, get back on your plan and hit it hard at the gym to make progress towards becoming a better person.

Stop Earning It.


Own It.  


Tuesday, November 4, 2014

What Are You Voting For?

In case you missed all the mailers, calls, and yard signs, election day has come and gone.

Did you vote?  I did.  I even have the super cool sticker to prove it.

I love the fact that I get to vote.  But even so, watching another round of campaigns has me thinking...

Do you sometimes feel like the act of voting creates disengaged citizens?  

Hear me out on this.  

When I vote, I contribute to the democratic machine.  If something goes wrong, it’s not my fault because I cast my ballot for a minuscule percentage of the population to own my well-being.  And when things get messed up, it’s their fault.  Not mine. 

Does this line of thinking sound familiar?  I don’t want to admit it, but I’ve thought it and I would bet you have too.  It's embarrassing because the democratic machine only operates optimally when citizens regularly engage, not just once every one, two, or four years.

So here's my question.

Does this sound like something you've done with your health? 

I think if we’re being honest, the answer is yes.  

At some point, we have relied on a pill to regulate blood sugar or manage inflammation.  We put our health into the hands of food marketers and fry cooks for the sake of time.  We drank countless diet drinks, slim down shakes, or protein sugar bombs in the name of getting skinny. 

Inevitably, it’s “leaked” that those things are all bad for us.  And we get angry.  We get angry at Big Pharma.  We get angry at the food industry.  We get angry at lobbyists, CEOs, and politicians lining their pockets. 

But don’t you think we should take some of the blame? 

Make no mistake, I am not making excuses for these folks.  I think the current state of our food system is appalling and the groups listed above are a big cause. 

I’m all for calling them to the carpet to take responsibility.  But even more so, I am for personal responsibility. 

Any time we give up control and rely on a product or service we do not or cannot source, we are essentially releasing liability for our own well being. 

I recognize we don’t all have the ability to raise chickens or cultivate an organic veggie farm in our backyard.  I've shared my thoughts in the past on how to be good at being local, but don't get overwhelmed.  You most likely know your biggest opportunity for taking your health into your own hands.  It could be cooking more of your own meals, buying some more organic fare, or cutting out sugary drinks.  

If everyone makes small changes, the food industry will respond.  Change doesn't have to be drastic.  Progress. even when slow, is still progress.  

Let’s pick up our forks, our favorite recipe, and carve out some time in the kitchen.  Don’t worry about who else is doing what.  Forget about miracle products and shortcuts.  We all know that the places worth being are the hardest to get to.