Healthful Eating. Healthy Lifestyle

Wow! Those are two concepts that are difficult to grasp.  If you’ve been following my recent posts you know I’ve been teaching a weight loss and healthy eating class.  It started last September and ended in February.  The class was timed to help get them through the most difficult eating time of the year…from Halloween to Super Bowl.  We had 20 people start the class and 10 have finished.  I feel good about this completion rate.   For those that have taught classes like this you know it’s hard to keep people coming back and “staying on track” especially over such a long and hectic time span.

Listening to the discussion in class, I know that a couple of the folks had that  “aha moment” when they switched from being “on a diet”  to the healthy lifestyle.  It’s hard.  If I had the prescription for making that happen or the motivational trick that would work for everyone I could be rich. But I don’t.

One of the ladies in the class had asked earlier about a weight loss supplement she had heard about on one of those television doctor shows.  After looking at some of the research she decided that it wasn’t worth it. She said to me as we were walking out, “I think I’ll keep going like I am, steady but sure.  I get it.”  SMILE.

Since the class ended just before the Super Bowl… one of the biggest junk food days of the year… I asked the group to answer a question about going to a party or being a guest in someone’s home… what would you take?  I was pleased with their answers, comments and the thinking process that they went through to get to these responses.

  • Hummus with wheat thins—“get some fiber in those snacks”
  • Homemade cereal snack mix-“if you make it yourself you know what’s in it”
  • Steamed Shrimp—“low fat, healthy and always a treat”
  • Smoked salmon –“put the on whole-wheat crackers”
  • Spritzer—“to add to the wine to make it go further”
  • Air-popped (or skinny microwave) popcorn—“don’t need to add the butter…but maybe a little grated cheese”
  • Baby carrots— “I can eat lots of them and it makes me feel like I’m eating junk food.”
  • Cut-up fruit—“cutting the apple in 16 pieces vs. 12 makes me think I’m getting more”

They know that there will be temptations at parties and social events (and life). There will be lots of foods that are high in fats and sugars and low in nutrients. But they know that there are other options. They don’t need to completely avoid everything. But they also know that they can also be the person who brings something healthier for themselves and others.

They get it.

Cheryle Jones Syracuse, MS
Professor Emeritus, The Ohio State University


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updated on 05-20-2024