Australian’s Obesity

I just heard on the news it confirmed that over 60% of Australian’s are now classified as overweight or obese….this scares me so much. Enough in fact to write about it.

obesity-epidemic-chartThe percentage of the Australian Population between 2011-2012 considered overweight or obese. Source: entwellbeing

Now, I am no expert on nutrition or obesity, let me make that very clear. These are purely my beliefs or my desire to shake a few people enough that they also become passionate about this issue. I am in no way trying to push my lifestyle of eating Paleo on anyone, though I seriously believe as a nation we need to look at what is on our dinner plates.

I’d like you to ask yourself 2 questions:

Q: Why do I eat meat, fruit and vegetables?

Q: Why do I eat bread and pasta?

A: Now, aside from answering “they taste good” you might have mentioned you eat meats, fruit and vegetables as they are full of vitamins, protein, or minerals. “They are good for me”. Maybe “they fuel my body”. Can you say the same for bread and pasta? I’m sure some would again say “they taste good”, but what else? You might say “they fill me up”.

Do you want to be filled up OR do you want to fuel your body? I think we need to take a look at why we eat certain foods and change the balance or ratio’s in our diets. Convenience has been a big factor in our argument against lapses in a healthy diet. It can simply be as quick to steam some vegetables or cook a piece of meat as it is to boil some pasta.

I read this article earlier today titled Top 13 Nutrition Lies That Made The World Sick & Fat. In particular I found the ‘Food Pyramid’ image very hard to look at. Who remembers this from their school years?

food-pyramid

The balance of this image to me appears all wrong. Look at all that bread, pasta, rice and grains.

What I do remember from growing up some 30+ years ago was a lot of meat and veg dinners, casseroles (more meat and veggies), oh and roasts. I did eat wheat based food, but not three heavy meals a day of them. Cakes were a treat, my lunchbox wasn’t full of packets and take aways were exciting because they were rare and not a regular occurrence.

The fibre and carbohydrates that I would consume from eating wheat based products can be found in vegetables and fruit. There are alternatives. There are options that you can eat and will fill you up.

Our children are already fighting the statistics, with 25% of kids between 2-16 classed as overweight or obese. If we don’t make a change now, then the overall rate of 60% can only continue to rise as our kids grow if we don’t change something. They are also finding statics linking our current eating habits with increases to diabetes, cancer and heart conditions.

All I ask is that you consider not picking up a prepared meal (processed) for dinner and cook something fresh. Decrease the amount of meals you include pasta or rice in for the week, and instead of packing that ‘healthy’ salad sandwich, leave it as a salad. You may be surprised at how good you feel.

Brooke

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