|Moderation-what does it really mean? |
So far this summer there have been a variety of reports telling us what's good and what's bad for us. What works and what doesn't work for us.
* Coffee is good for you-in small amounts (1-2 cups); too much isn't good for you.
* Flavanols are good for you-not only for your heart, but your brain too. These are found in cocoa, tea, grapes, and red wine! But too much can be bad for you. Well okay, let's be real-not one of you is going to over-indulge on the grapes, but the rest is likely! We know dark chocolate is good-but only about the size of a nickel. We know the components of red wine (and grapes) are good for us, but only five ounces of wine. Yes five ounces, that's nowhere near what you pour.
* To get the best abs (abdominals) you need to do more than just sit -ups. More than just one exercise is necessary. Multiple exercises and watching the foods you eat make the real difference!
* There's an ad on the radio that says that once you get past 40, you can't lose weight on your own-but their product will get you there! (this is so completely ridiculous please don't fall for it!)
Seriously!?!?!?!?!??! What is going on? Too much of anything=not good. Not enough of anything=not good. So somewhere in the middle things have to be right-right?
Moderation= being moderate; avoiding extremes or excesses. If we all lived in a perfect, moderate world, we would all be fine-right? Yes and No!
Yes, moderation is great when you actually get all things in moderation. All your fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fiber and protein. Get ALL of that in moderation and you're on your way! But are you getting your whole grains, your fiber, and your daily veggies? Probably not. How about your moderation of exercise? 30 minutes a day is what's recommended.
So in our reality-the sign of our times-we aren't living the moderation movement for our health. Are we getting a balanced moderation of junk food, snacks and desserts? Sadly we are. We use the word moderation as an excuse or justification to eat. We tell ourselves that we can have that extra dessert/snack/soda/etc. We need to be honest with ourselves. Find balance and you can have that extra snack. You will know that your daily physical activity (exercise) will help burn it off. And when you have that snack in balance with the rest of your meals, you aren't eating out of guilt or shame.
No, moderation won't work when you have any of the risk factors for heart disease. If you are overweight, physically inactive, have high blood pressure, have high cholesterol, have high blood sugar or if you smoke. Because all of these factors mean you blew the moderation thing at some point. Some of you have great balance in moderation, you might do everything right, but still have some of these risk factors. Family history might be to blame--that means more has to be done; moderation isn't going to cut it.
So the perfect solution not just for your abs, but also for your risk factors and most everything else that we know of---is to incorporate a healthy diet and more exercise into your life. The solution is a well rounded approach. How about that!
Balance is a wonderful thing that we all strive for on any given day. We may never find the perfect balance-but trying a little more each day, will do wonders for your mind, heart and soul! Pat yourself on the back and give yourself credit for the attempts. Don't give up. You can do it, and we are here to help.