My Letter To The Woman Behind Me In Aisle #5 (And My Defense of Real Food)

Yesterday, while grocery shopping, I couldn’t help but check out the grocery cart of the woman behind me. I am oddly overly interested in what other people are buying at the supermarket, as I imagine some women are interested in what others are buying at the mall. What can I say? I love food.

Anyway, back to the point. I was shocked to find that this woman’s cart wasn’t filled with food at all. Rather it was filled with fake “food-like” products.

5 packs of sugar-free Crystal Light.

a box of splenda.

1 tub fat-free yogurt (or was it go-gurt?)

2 bottles of diet cream soda

A few packages of diet “low cal” microwavable meals

Zero real food.

Mind you, this woman was overweight and judging by her diet-filled cart was likely trying to lose weight by the good ol’ tactic: cutting back on calories. She looked sad, fatigued and downright exhausted.

First of all, I wanted to give her a hug. And tell her it was going to be OK and that she is beautiful & enough. (Seriously, it’s incredible how so many women just need that boost of confidence).

At the same time, I wanted to smack some sense into her. I wanted to tell her that she was better off just using real sugar, and throwing that splenda in the trash. That she’d get more nutrients in a piece of steak and a potato than she’d find in a boxed, processed, microwavable “diet” meal any day.

That if she chugged water throughout the day, maybe just maybe that diet soda wouldn’t seem as enticing. And if it still is, has she considered seltzer water with some natural juice squeezed in?

That those teeny tiny packets of Crsyal Light are actually filled with lots of chemicals and artificial flavors including aspartame & yellow # 5, and that at this point you’re better off just drinking straight up juice. Or ya know, an apple or orange?

That cutting back on food by replacing it with “fake food” to save calories is not the answer. That nourishing your body with REAL FOOD (and lots of it) is.

A piece of real fruit picked from the tree will always trump “fruit flavored” products. A piece of organic chicken or steak (yes, fat and all) will always beat out the package of vegan veggie burgers that have 100+ ingredients, 90 of which you can’t pronounce. If you can tolerate dairy, a full-fat, REAL block of cheese is better than a fat-free piece of fake cheese that tastes and looks like cardboard any day.

Straight up beautiful, colorful vegetables – broccoli, leafy greens, bok choy, carrots – completely blow measly canned veggies or frozen “diet” meals filled with dehydrated veggies out of the water.

If you want to lose weight or straighten up your diet, don’t focus on what you need to take out; rather focus on what you can add in. And add in those things that nourish you most.

Bottom line?

Real food > Fake Food.


The end.

8 Responses to “My Letter To The Woman Behind Me In Aisle #5 (And My Defense of Real Food)”

  1. Athena @ Fitness & Feta Says:

    Found myself nodding in agreement to everything you wrote in this post, Rachel. Thanks for the good read!

  2. Lauren Says:

    I 100% agree with your thoughts on REAL food. It’s always a better choice versus the crap that fills our supermarkets. And while I too have wandering eyes in the grocery store and can appreciate you wanting to help this woman. Your article made me ask myself – who are we to judge?

    We’re all on our own individual journeys to finding health and happiness. And no one can make you want to truly change for the better other than yourself. Many women have struggled with various diets and some are lucky enough to break free and find true health. But let’s not judge others for their personal choices while working on ourselves.

  3. Rachel @Healthy Chicks Says:

    @lauren first of all, thank you so much for stopping by my blog! I am sorry the post came across that I was judging this woman, as that was not my intention at all! In fact, I relate to her & understand, and if anything judge the media for putting misinformation out there that to be “thin” you need to cut back & eat diet food. If this is your first time visiting my blog, you may not know that I was a lot like this woman during my late teens & early twenties, and that this message actually spiraled me into a borderline eating disorder because I feared food, that is real food. I was unhappy with myself & my body and pretty much lived off diet food in constant fear (which I’ve written about many times on the blog). That’s why I am so passionate about this topic & do whatever I can to get my message out there…that real food is not the enemy. I guess I should have explained my past better to first time readers! Thank you again for your response & I hope you continue reading 🙂 cheers, Rachel

  4. Rachel @ Healthy Chicks Says:

    @Athena thank you so much girl! Thanks for reading & sharing!!

  5. Katy Says:

    What a great read!! I see this all the time too when I grocery shop and wish I could tell them to start eating healthier. It’s honestly not that hard!

  6. Rachel @Healthy Chicks Says:

    @Katy Thanks! And that you for stopping by my blog! It’s the unhealthy FAKE food that really gets me.

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This entry was posted on Tuesday, January 21st, 2014 at 8:07 pm and is filed under Health & Wellness, Lifestyle. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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