But I’m a girl, so it won’t be Bible-preaching.
I’ve got a number of friends and family who, because of the example I set, know that they ought to cut the bad foods out of their diet. Unlike many people on a Standard American Diet, they even have some idea what those bad foods are.
The problem is, I’m the only voice they hear this stuff from, and I lack gravitas. It doesn’t matter that I have taken my body from pudgy and sickly to slender and strong. It doesn’t matter that I can run circles around people half my age. It doesn’t matter that I look hotter than I did when I was 21. (I was never very pretty, but I’m now a solid 9 out of 10, if you’re just comparing today’s me to other mes I’ve been.) It doesn’t matter that I am not aging at anything like the accelerated rate of my age cohort. None of my success can be seen as anything but a fluke, because I’m just a congenital weirdo who does things like having “too many” babies and then homeschooling them. It is certainly not just anybody who can be healthy at the ripe old age of…however old I am now. It takes a special genetic predisposition, aka luck, right?
I’m not a doctor or a certified nutritionist. I don’t even have a YouTube channel. I’ve considered it, since watching videos is apparently what everybody really wants to do. Alas, I have a face fit only for radio, and voice fit only for print, so I won’t be venturing into that world.
What I do have is this little blog and my equally tiny real-life social network. And while I’m over here with no credentials whatsoever, trying to save everybody a lot of self-inflicted grief, every magazine, newspaper, tv show, doctor, nurse, athlete, friend, and neighbor is telling my loved ones to eat ever more seed oils, grains, and sugar. And now they’re trying to turn us on to this bizarre fake meat that is supposed to be better for you than plain old, God-given meat.
Lord, help me fight this giant industry that’s trying to kill my people!
Add to these influences the fact that all those processed foods are nigh-on orgasmic to eat. When the tv is off, and you’re finally listening to your rational self and trying to reject that hyperpalatable food, your traitorous brain will start singing the same tune. Your dopamine-loving brain will tell you anything at all to justify the next hit of sweet-fat-salty bliss. Next thing you know, you’re face down in a bowl of macaroni salad, and your insulin is higher than Hunter Biden after the Chinese dropped the latest payment in his off-shore account.
All the people (but me) say this is perfectly reasonable eating behavior!
You can probably see by now that I’m getting a little frustrated trying to convince the people I love most to just stop.
Stop giving yourself cancer.
Stop giving yourself heart disease.
Stop giving yourself diabetes.
Take responsibility for what you put into your body.
You, my beloved friends and family, are giving yourself these diseases. Every time you open your mouth to put in whatever insane food happens to be in front of you, with no sense of responsibility for the effects that it will have on your body (and your mind, but I’ll get to that later), you are sinning against your own body.
Do I take it too far calling it a sin? But I told you I was going to be preaching, didn’t I?
Is there not a point where intentional self-harm begins to carry moral implications? You be the judge of your own behavior.
There was a time when you truly couldn’t be blamed for your physical condition. There was a time, before I started telling you these things, that you really thought that the food pyramid was science from on high, rather than a marketing ploy to boost grain sales. There was a time when it was still possible to believe that your illnesses were all just genetic, just normal aging, just bad luck. There was a time when you could have no idea that you had caused your own problems in large part by your own choices.
But you can’t be ignorant any longer, because I’m standing out here on my street corner with my (bun-less) sandwich-board sign telling you that you don’t have to go through the Hell of metabolic illness. Salvation is here! (Understand, please, that I am absolutely not equating having a healthy diet with saving your soul. I’m going to keep torturing this metaphor until it confesses…something, anyway.)
Actions come from belief, and belief comes from hearing, and how will you hear if I don’t preach to you?
To my dismay, I’ve discovered that what most people are willing to believe has more to do with how often they hear a thing than whether what they’re hearing makes any sense at all. (Consider this your invitation to throw out your lying tv, also.) If you hear over and over that whole grain bread is a health food and that meat will kill you, you will eat whole grain bread and cut down on meat, even though you can see with your own two eyes that you haven’t gotten healthy by following this advice. Your fat, sickly doctor will look you unabashedly in the eye and tell you to lose weight, and you’ll do the same things to lose weight that your fat, sickly doctor is doing. And guess what? You’ll be fat and sickly, too.
People in authority, people in white coats, people in front of tv cameras, and simply the people from whom you desire social approval just keep repeating the low-fat, anti-meat mantra. They win your mind because they keep repeating the lie. I’ve been remiss in that. I cut back on saying it because I don’t want to bother people, but repetition is the key.
You know that the “healthy” way of eating will kill you; you’re watching it happen in real time. But you still need to hear from the other side daily, kind of like reading your Bible to fight the devil’s incessant tricks. So, for the sake of my loved ones (and you strangers on the internet) I’ll repeat this until it either sinks in or I die trying:
Stop making excuses. Do the emotionally and socially painful work of changing your diet. You have a choice to become sicker or healthier, every single time you eat. I will be tickled pink to give specifics to anybody who asks, and feel free to browse my scanty archives.
If you are interested in hearing more, here are some preachers you may find quite a bit more credible than apparently I have been.
I don’t always agree with everything that all of them say. Some of them are nerdier or meatier or more plant-tolerant than others. They’ll all get to you to a much healthier place than your current advisors can.