Super-foods and shame-mongering

Is it just me or is anyone else sick and tired of all of the shame-mongering attached to recent food trends and diets? Personally I am over hearing about the next fad diet, and all of the unsubstantiated promises attached to it. I don’t think it is right that the average person now feels guilty that they are not spending $25 on cold pressed extra virgin coconut oil and $40 on organic cacao nibs, thinking that these ‘super-foods” are going to give them magical benefits.

In reality, there are no super health benefits attached to these products. You won’t find a superhero cape on the packets, because they are just regular foods, often overpriced and slapped with a catchy claim to persuade you to think it’s amazing. 

I’m not saying that some foods claiming to be super-foods aren’t nutritious, I’m simply pointing out that there are plenty of regular foods, that have been available in supermarkets probably since your parents were young, that are just as nutritious. I don’t think anyone should feel pushed into forking out ridiculous amounts of cash on foods  just because the latest celebrity endorses them.

I have lost count of people asking me for advice, telling me that they are trying to eat healthier (great), but feel compelled to take all manner of supplements and green powders, while also removing sugar, alcohol and dairy just because their friends said they should, or because they heard it will make them one hundred times healthier. I ask what is wrong with their health now, what symptoms do they have; often the answer is that their health is fine, they just feel concerned that they should be following the pack.

My question is then why would you need to remove whole food groups (Eg. dairy and grains) from your diet if you feel fine to begin with? I think the internet, including social-media, combined with the proliferation of celebrity-endorsed diets have given rise to an epidemic of shame-mongering and guilt.

Has the world gone crazy? I don’t think so, yet. I encourage everyone though to start applying a little bit of critical thinking to anything food related. Remember, our grandparents all had a simple approach to food because they had to. War and the Depression led to alternative thinking with food, resilience and a no-nonsense approach to eating. Granted there was no internet to spread fad diets, and no drive-thru convenience food, however I think we could all take something from that era.

Don’t dwell too much on food.

Eat for hunger, eat for enjoyment, and eat with family and friends.

Don’t obsess.

These are simple messages, perhaps we need to come back to these every once in a while when faced with another fad diet.

Have you ever been shamed into following a particular way of eating? I would love to hear from you.

Thanks for stopping by,

Madeleine (THG).

 This post was written by Madeleine Fleming and appeared first on That Healthy Girl http://www.thathealthygirlau.wordpress.com

One Comment Add yours

  1. Such a fantastic article Madeleine! The number of people following crazy food fads and diets because they think they have to is just RIDICULOUS! It’s wonderful to hear from an expert who is actually qualified to pass judgement and make a call on this issue. Well done!

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