Overly ‘healthy’ eating

This is not my usual sort of post, but when I read it in my university’s alumnae/i magazine thought it was worth sharing.

http://www.bu.edu/bostonia/2013/when-healthy-eating-becomes-an-obsession/

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10 thoughts on “Overly ‘healthy’ eating

  1. I am a very health conscious eater. I think the article was a bit over simplified because as I quote, I would qualify.

    What are the warning signs that might indicate someone has orthorexia?

    I think that the biggest warning sign is when you notice that your friend is no longer participating in his or her life fully, that they’re not going to dinner with you any more, that they’re unable to consume a meal that is prepared by someone else, or even have a meal at home with their family. It gets to that extreme. Someone with orthorexia often gets to the point where they can only consume food that they themselves have prepared.

    Honestly, I fit most of this. I don’t enjoy many restaurant meals, I don’t enjoy, for example the boxes of frozen veggie burgers. I live in a remote area and few restaurants cater to vegans. I would never reccomend for someone to eat a diet of the mega farm beef, chicken, pork, GMO soy /corn fed animals and I wouldn’t support one even if I ate meat. She doesn’t mention how the lean meat is grown.
    For most of the restaurants around here I might be lucky to get a veggie burger but if it’s not house made im not interested. Following the link, she reccomends shrimp, frozen, and there’s no way would I consider eating farmed seafood. Ugh

    But, I’m not worried about my diet, I consume homemade bread with avocados, fresh fruit, veggies, beans, hummus, homemade museli, dried fruit, nuts,seeds, beans, olive oil, homemade salad dressings.

    So, if I’m suffering from a mental illness so be it. It’s mine. Lol
    Honestly, I prefer my own food, love my homemade food and am sorry for my restaurant aversions only because of the difficulties it creates for my friends and family. Often times, now a days, we just go to the market and buy food and eat in the car or at a park. I’m not into putting rubbish in my body even if I’m borderline nuts and I’m also on protest against the way the food is grown or produced. I do organic garden and belong to a CSA and I’m a food snob. So there..

    I have my quirks, no doubt. I will for as long as I can try not to put my money into things I don’t want to see grow in this world. I hope I’m not sounding preachy it’s just where I’m at consciously at this point in my life and I would hate to see folks go, ooh what nut case because of my eating habits. I don’t think she makes a stong enough case. And don’t ask about my healthy appetite for my homemade ale. Haha

    I hope this is taken well, being my first post here and all

    • Sorry this did not post when I approved your comment. My internet was acting up.

      I only posted this because it is an interesting perspective on one aspect of the whole fraught and challenging spectrum is issues around how and what we eat. It is not meant by me as any sort of critique of those who make informed and reasoned choices about their diet and food options.

      Keeping the conversation going is what is important. I make different choices from the ones you make regarding my diet and the food I eat. Each of us is free to do this. I am not evangelistic about any diet option.

      I have noticed, however, and to my distress that much of the time one of the most contentious issues for Druids/Pagans is the whole matter of diet. There have been times when I feel a pariah in my spiritual community in its broadest sense because I am neither a vegetarian nor vegan. Times when I felt that I was being judged for choices I make based on what I know is best for my body. Times when I felt I would not be welcomed if I admitted to eating flesh. Now I no longer feel that way. So you see I am in no way making a judgement in posting this article. It is grist for the mill. Food for thought, as it were.

      Thank you for diving in and contributing your perspective, and do keep posting.

      • Thank you for your welcome. I was wondering if I was too much. Too open.
        I have no problems with people eating meat as long as they are conscious. Also, I am a fledgling in the Druid world. I don’t have a pagan Druid community but I would be surprised to find out anyone labeling themselves as Druid would not be fairly conscious to their relationship to the world. I outline my personal choice based on my logic.

        A matter of finance and a determination to not support unethical practices that are bad for the environment. To buy a small ethically raised chicken around here is 20 US dollars. My partner thrives on meat, I cook it for him, make a soup out of the carcass and I thank the birds spirit. I can’t afford to eat meat that’s organic and raised by conscious humans. He is working and really craves meat. I can stretch that chicken to many meals for him.

        A matter of being blessed with the gene that causes high cholesterol. I Lost my sister to her untimely death from a massive coronary at her age of 56 while she was cleaning her sheep barn and my mother also suffering from heart disease at a young age. As a sign that a vegan diet is good for me I have been able to stay off pharmaceutical drugs.

        I need to keep my weight down due to some structural flaws, dislocated hip, crushing knee injury. Every pound I don’t carry is four pounds my aching hip doesn’t carry. 10 pounds lighter overall is forty pounds on my aching hip with every step.

        I had a cow once that I co-owned named SweetPea. I raised her and could ride her. When the time came, I begged, pleaded and lost the battle and couldn’t swallow meat. I went 5 years that time, no meat. I ate meat again during my pregnancy as I craved it. That suggests to me that if I can’t raise an animal kindly and than eat it than I should not eat farmed meat no matter how humanely raised.

        I hunt with my partner for venison. I am the scout, find the scrapes, rubs, bedding areas. He sits. I circle. We have had only one success. I ate the heart the first night and the liver the next night to honor the deer. No meat was wasted. He ate the whole deer that year. We started hunting after a doe was killed by a car in our yard. He ate all of her except one blood shattered leg. He loves meat and he looks healthy. The deer where I live suffer from many car auto accidents and coyotes. The little deer sleep as close to houses as they can to get away from the coyotes. In my mind a respectful harvest of deer is not really different than vegetable gardening. There are a lot of people that bait with apples. We don’t, but I have developed my opinion that baiting should/could be legal and far kinder than some of these folks taking poor shots at moving animals and having the coyotes tear up these wounded deer. I am a huge woods walker and to come across a deer that’s been devoured makes an impression.

        A while back, not that long ago, I ate a piece of hake fish. In part of respecting it, I decided to read about it and learned it had a life span of 14 years. I felt bad but ate it because I felt I needed it. i was hungry. I would never ever eat a fish that wasn’t wild nor would I without cooking it and honoring it. I stand in protest of the fish farming practice. Life goes on. I would never eat meat or fish in a restaurant because of the lack of honor. This is my way of living my life. I don’t think I am suffering a mental illness and the article in my opinion dosent due honor to my thought out choices. Too mainstream. And I think it gives mainstream folks ammunition to label me as a person suffering from a mental disorder just because I am different and determined to do what I think is right. And God forbid, pagan to boot.

        I was unaware of a controversy in the pagan world but to me I wonder if most of the meat eating people are in denial. A good pagan or person in my opinion thinks about what they are doing at all times. I do try to remain true to my principals. But I am human.

        Thank you for your blog. I have been enjoying readings from like minded people. This diet thing is really only a problem when you are out in public. I think to me I am mostly mortified that she wants to label someone for following a healthy diet and reccomends unhealthy choices that take a lot of resources and are damaging to the enviroment. To me, eating like that you must be nuts. Ha

  2. I think that piece says more about mindsets than actual food problems. As sometimes with these things, a restrictive diet will result in physiological problems. I’m comfortable within myself regarding my omnivore diet.

  3. Hairymare, thank you for sharing so openly and honestly about the reasoned and rational decisions you have made regarding your diet choices. There is nothing, literally, more personal than what and how one chooses to consume that which nourishes one’s body and by extension one’s soul. The way one approaches whatever one eats, whether from a plant of animal source is not only a physical/physiological matter but a spiritual one as well. As long as one gets all the appropriate body building and maintaining nutrients and can consume them with gratitude and joy then that is the most important thing.

    You hunt, you know. You respect and work with the diet choices of your partner. You research sources for your food, your are thoughtful and respectful in your approach . . . it seems to me that there is nothing unsound about that, not mentally and certainly not spiritually. You take care of yourself and those you love. What could be more important.

    Your experience with SweetPea made me weep as I read it. She taught you a powerful lesson and gave you a priceless gift, and perhaps because it you have been able to make your food choices as an adult with an understanding most of us will never have. That experience has not made the choices easy, by any means, but has put them in stark contrast for you. I give thanks to SweetPea for her gifts to you in her living and her dying.

    As an aside . . . when I was 15 my family had to move from Indianapolis to Canton, OH. We came back from the trip that found a place to live and knew we could not take our rescue dog with us. When we opened the door to go into our apartment Daisy charged out and ended up being hit by a car on the busy main street that ran in front of our home. She had to be put down. It was heartbreaking. As a result, because I was volunteering at the Indianapolis Zoo that summer, they allowed me the privilege of leash training the two tiger cubs. I went in early for the next three weeks and took them on strolls through the grounds, I fed and played with them. Just last year, as Tiger came as one of my companion animals, walks on my left side, when I was brushing my teeth I began to weep. I felt Daisy’s presence and the message that if she had not gone I would not have such a personal and powerful connection to Tiger, whose presence with me was/is very needful at this time in my life. One never knows . . .

    You might want to look at TDN’s website, if you have not already done so . . . many like minded Druids there, not a few who have it as their Druid community.

    Again, thank you so much for sharing your story. I look forward to more of your comments. x

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