The Diet Dilemma

Today, we talk about the word diet.

What it means? How it is used?

How to reframe the word diet?

And, as always, in our new season structure, I will be fielding health questions from the week.

Main Segment

Let’s talk about a famous word. It is used all, too often, but is vital to our daily life. The word is diet!

(Sighs) This word. It kills me a lot of the time. I find that it gets used way out of context, way too much. I even find that health and fitness professionals use the word wrong a lot.

Even more of a problem is that the word diet often comes with a negative connotation. It is not used favorably. It is almost as if it brings up hidden emotions or triggers lost feelings…which now that I think of it, can be true.

Well, what is a diet? A diet is the kind of food that a person or a community (society) habitually eats. This is the day-to-day, week-to-week eating habits a person carries. If a person eats fruit every day, that is a part of their diet. If a person eats out twice per week, that is a part of their diet. If a culture eats fast food a lot, in becomes a part of their culture’s habits, and diet. I think you are seeing where I am getting at. I am sure some of you listening may be nodding your head, or some of you may be cocking it to the side perplexed.

Some of you are saying, you are right coach! Some are saying, that is not what I know a diet as. Well, in any case, our (American/Western World) society, a diet is something you go on. It is a change of the norm. Sadly, we often associate diet with unhealthy or poor tasting food.

Why did we develop these thoughts about the word “diet”? I believe It comes from the push on reaching an ideal body type. We can argue that this was media-driven to look like models or pursue an image that is relatively unattainable. It can also be argued that there is an obesity epidemic plaguing the United States (and Western World countries); which there is. The increase in body size, weight gain, and negative biometric readings have caused a big influx of quote-unquote “diets”. People are wanting to achieve health and fitness, and often want it to happen all too quick. Because people cannot reach health and fitness goals quickly (or simply do not know how), they give up, and that negativity of failure sticks with them.

Listen, people want easy. I completely understand! The “thinking” step is what turns most people off, especially when they are stressed. Also, people stay away from the things they are not good at. It avoids failure or looking dumb. There is a huge stigma on failing and looking like a fool. The social criticism seems to be worse that the unhealthy risk factors that are present. Ironically, people would rather lead an unhealthy lifestyle than fail in the pursuit of fitness in front of peers. That is perplexing!

The word diet brings back those negative feelings of failure, and/or a complete change to the lifestyle they lead that they feel it is too difficult a jump.