Tuesday, November 22, 2011

You break it; you own it (a.k.a. Thanksgiving paleo thoughts)

It's funny... When you start eating this way and then blogging about it, more people than usual start talking to you about food. Some of those people flatter me greatly when they tell me that they're off on their own paleo or primal food journey as a result of my incessant blahblahblah on the subject. But let's keep one thing clear: if you choose to do this, it's your gig, not mine. In other words, I am more than happy to field any question a fellow paleo/primal person wants to throw my way, but what I am not here on the planet to be is your disapproving parent.

I had someone who is dabbling in paleo -- a concept I am not sure I really understand; "60% paleo" strikes me as "not very paleo at all," but I digress -- tell me the other day that she knew I would disapprove, but she ate ______ (some gluten-filled item). It was expected that I would either say something nurturing and caring like, "Oh, do your best; own your cheats and get back on the wagon," or, more harshly say, "That's awful."

Instead I said, "Whatever."

I got the impression that this went over poorly.

And then I had to explain: I don't care what you eat. I am more than happy to help steer you toward good food choices if you ask me a question, but I am not the food police and I think you ought to be responsible enough for your own actions not to complain about a choice you made to eat something bad for you.

I firmly believe that you will never successfully learn how to feed yourself until you take the position that no one is responsible for what goes down your piehole but you.

And this all plays a larger-than-normal role in my thoughts as we approach Thanksgiving and all its food-filled splendor.

Your mom didn't force you to have a piece of pie or a helping of stuffing because she made it. Yes, you can reasonably make a choice that it is politically or socially more acceptable for you to have a little bit (or a lot, for that matter) of some off-the-paleo-reservation food item, rather than declining it entirely and explaining that gluten is your personal enemy, etc. But *you* make that choice, not your mom or your grandma or whoever is making your holiday meal.

Man (or woman) up. Don't turn simple food choices into an exercise in drama. I really do not care what you eat. However, I do care if you try to blame your eating on something or someone else. It's your life; own it.

Happy Thanksgiving.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad