Tuesday, April 3, 2012

And In Last Place...

Well, shoot.  As I'm logging in to check my email...which I should do more often since I had way too many to actually read (not that I'm popular; that I haven't checked it in probably more than a week...), and I notice the scrolling news from Yahoo:
Michigan's Healthiest Counties
Well, naturally I click on it...I'm from there...and I just know what it's going to say.  Even though the title is "Healthiest" Counties, I scroll down to find that, of course, my county is, in fact, at the bottom of the list representing the most "UNhealthiest" Counties.  Awesome.

Sadly, I knew that was coming.  You always hear about poor Southeast Michigan.  We have the unhealthiest, poorest, most violent people in the country.  Or so the media would have you think.

Well, I beg to differ!  I know plenty of very healthy people!  I teach with very healthy, educated, happy, non-violent people!  I have healthy friends, with healthy families.  I have a healthy family, and I'm pretty darn healthy myself!

In our area in Michigan, you are not going to find a Whole Foods or a Trader Joes.  You've got to drive an hour and spend a fortune on gas to get to one of those stores.  No, instead we go to Kroger, or Meijer and we buy what those chains have to offer.  In my opinion, if you shop smart and look at ingredients, you can make healthy choices at these places too.
Then, I'm looking at my emails, and I find my LIVESTRONG.COM email.  I love getting those, because there is such down-to-earth, easy to follow, in regular people's terms health and fitness advice.
Well, as luck would have it, the email called 5 Dangerous Food Myths is what I see.  So I click it.  
  • It talks about "natural" ingredients:  "Next time you see the word “natural” on the front of a package, remember, it’s just a sales pitch. If a product needs to pitch to you from its package front that it’s healthy, it’s probably not. Turn it over, actually read the ingredients and nutrition facts panel and then decide."
  • The myth that short lists of ingredients and pronounceable words make for an automatic healthy choice:  "Just because you can pronounce it, doesn’t make it good. I can pronounce trans-fat pretty easily; along with its more covert twin brothers hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated vegetable oils. I can also pronounce pepperoni, white flour, bacon double cheeseburger and lollipop, but that doesn’t mean I should make those foods a regular part of my diet."
    And, the fact that just because there are more than 5 ingredients, doesn't automatically make the product a bad choice:  "
    You simply have to take the time to actually read ingredients and nutrition facts panels, then do some critical thinking."
  • Low fat/carb foods mean that you can eat more:  "Here’s a rule that applies to all diets: There’s no plan, regime, or program that will negate the absolute truth that calories are the currency of weight."
  • The quick-fix diet and how it'll bite you in the a@#:  "Whether it’s an exceedingly restrictive all-liquid diet, or the adoption of an eating style that you either don’t like or that leaves you desperately missing what’s gone, the weight you lose living a life you don’t enjoy is weight that will not stay off."
    Basically, live the lifestyle that makes you happy, AND in turn healthy, and you can't go wrong!:  "
    Your real goal? Live the healthiest life you can enjoy, not the healthiest life you can tolerate. Yes, if you have weight to lose, you’ll have to make changes. But if you change so far from who you are and what you enjoy, odds are that it’s not a sustainable plan. Don’t aim for your so-called “ideal” weight; instead aim for what I refer to as your “best” weight, which is the weight you reach when living the healthiest life you can actually enjoy."
All of the above quotes are from LIVESTRONG.COM.  My words are in pink, and much less profound.

I know so many people who are MAKING the changes necessary to just live HAPPIER, HEALTHIER AND SMARTER.  And that's what I think is important.  Making smart choices, doing what is right for you.  There are smart, healthy options out there when it comes to what you eat.  Incorporating them into you everyday life is the key.  See what you like, what your family likes, what makes everyone happy and healthy.
So what you're saying is that I should cut back on these?
Read the ingredients and don't just go for LOW FAT or REDUCED CALORIE.  Read to find out if those options are actually healthier!  I'm a victim of this myself, and I'm really going to take more time to find out what I'm buying and feeding to my family.  (Which means I'm going to have to take a trip to Krogs without the kiddies so that I can actually look at the label instead of throwing it into the cart in a frenzied blur!)

Where do you do your grocery shopping?

Do you shop in separate stores for different items?  like a market for produce and butcher for meat?s


  1. Thanks for the tips!!

    I LOVE Trader Joe's and wish we had one around here. I try to make a trip out to one once a month stock up. I go to Weyands Fish Market for fish once a week. I usually go to Carlos and Joe's or Trentwood for meat/produce. And Meijer or Kroger for the rest...

  2. I shop produce/honey/eggs at our local farmers market as often as possible and the rest at a regular grocery store


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