“Laura, have a Doritos,” my friend said as the bag was passed around the table.
“No thanks,” I replied.
“How can you turn down Doritos?” he asked. “They’re delicious.”
“I don’t know, I guess it’s the same way I refuse to ingest fast food hamburgers, diet drinks, deli meats with nitrosamines, and French fries. I simply don’t consider them food. It would be like picking up my phone and eating it,” I shrugged.
“Now that’s will-power,” he laughed and popped another Doritos into his mouth.
“I don’t really consider it will-power,” I said. “I know most people enjoy Doritos and I used to eat them by the bag—the large bag of course—but I don’t consider them food anymore. Like I said, it would be like eating my phone.” I pointed to my cell. “They’re not hard to say no to, because I’ve made up my mind and they don’t exist in my repertoire of what constitutes food. Plus, this way of being keeps my trim figure in check,” I joked.
“Well, I’d eat my i-phone before I’d give up Doritos,” my friend said and licked the orange coating from his fingers. “They sure are tasty.”
I nodded, remembering the yummy taste of Doritos cheesiness. “I’m glad you’re enjoying them,” I chuckled. “I see you’ve made your choice and I respect that.”
I’ve spent many years reading and pondering labels. I’ve studied nutrition and given the experiences in my life—having had tumors and cancer three times—I think most would agree it would be absurd for me to ignore what I’ve learned and continue to eat non-foods. I have no desire to be sick again. I’ve come up with a way to rationalize my food choices based on nutritional value and a sort of risk and reward mentality that suits me. I don’t believe my body wants to tolerate chemicalized or nutrient-dead foods, so I avoid them. It’s as simple as that.
As soon as I see monosodium glutamate; hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated anything; artificial colors, like yellow #5,# 6, red #40, or any other color of the rainbow; aspartame, Nutra Sweet, Splenda; and nitrates or nitrites— I’m out. I wouldn’t eat spoonfuls of chemicals on their own, so why would I eat them in my food?
Deep frying alters the molecular composition of the nutrients, especially in potatoes, and is known to render the compounds carcinogenic. Why would I willingly eat foods that promote cancer—that chomp away at the antioxidants in my body, like a Pac-Man game gone rogue? I’m not going to say I never steal a fry, but it’s pretty darn rare. I feel these “non-foods” are dangerous and I don’t want to roll the dice. Sometimes I reconsider and eat sweet potato fries. You see, we all make choices!
What choices are you contemplating or making healthy junkies? Feel free to share on facebook at The Healthy Junkie fan page.
Next week, I’ll blog about demystifying food—making sense of the abundance of nutritional information. We don’t have to be perfect to be healthy!