Tuesday, July 30, 2013

The World We Live In

We hear and read a lot about how our food industry and eating habits in America have taken a turn for the worst over the past few decades, and that our food choices were healthier in our grandparents’ days than now. I’ve written about it myself. In contrast, it occurred to me this morning how fortunate we are to be living in these times we’re in now.

I have loved ones who are in their late 60s and 70s and dealing with health problems. They came up
in the age where it was believed that smoking cigarettes wasn’t harmful (although I can’t fathom why common sense wouldn’t trump popular culture on that one!). The no-fat diet fad gave permission to load up on carbs and refined sugar, processed foods and fast food restaurants became more easily accessible (without the warnings of it's harmful effects we have now), and exercising wasn’t trendy, especially for women.

Today we have more information available to us than we know what to do with. Of course, information overload can result in confusion, but our current culture encourages us to be proactive in taking charge of our own health. We’ve come so far in even just the past two decades in what we know. Even if the food industry is more concerned with revenue than the health safety of their consumers, we have enough information to be able to actively make wiser choices.

In addition, like many other things, the fields of sports and fitness have opened up to women more than any time in history. It’s not just okay, but in fact popular for women to compete in everything from bodybuilding competitions, to contact sports, to marathons. If I were my age during the time my mother was my age, I wouldn’t have the option of feeling comfortable training in the weight room with the guys or participating in an obstacle course style competition on a coed team.  I believe that my active lifestyle during my early and mid-life years gives me a better chance for a higher quality of living in my later years than my grandmothers have.

I’m grateful for the progress that’s been made before and in my lifetime. I love that we have the resources to be in control of our own health and fitness choices and the encouragement to make good ones.

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