The Natural Food vs. Junk Food Fight

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Junk Food Fight

This is something that has been weighing heavily on my mind the last few months. There is some kind of misconception out there that if you want to try to live a healthier lifestyle it's an all or nothing game. You're either in or your out. I must have been living under a rock because it wasn't till I decided to start making small changes in our family's diet to eat healthier that I became aware of the Natural Food vs. Junk Food Fight. Notice I used the word fight not debate. I struggled with what word to use, but the more I wrote, the more I leaned towards the word fight.  I have never been a healthy eater, matter of fact, I used to think it was all hokey pokey until a friend turned me onto essential oils. It literally took her six months to get me to try them, but she never once pushed them on me, she only gave me information. I respected her for that. Once I discovered how well these oils worked for some of the health problems we had, I began to research other natural things which led me into learning more about what is in my food.

There is something very wrong and disheartening going on and while I rarely blog about, controversial/hot topics that could be negative, this is something that just weighed very heavy on my heart and well it's my blog right? There seems to be a community out there who feels the need to prey on people who don't live the same healthy lifestyle as they do. Or shall I say “Drink the Koolaid”. Some of them may openly call themselves activists, advocates or whatever and some may just have very strong opinions about our food in general.  That's AWESOME, it's great to have someone who will stand up and fight for healthier options for our family.

However, there is a right way to go about it and a wrong way to go about it. I am very disheartened by the fact that people are going out of their way to talk about other peoples eating habits or personally attack and try to degrade them publicly or even personally for it. Whether it's on Facebook, Twitter, or just in personal conversations. Do you even understand what you are doing? You may call yourself an advocate, but I would call you a bully. There is no difference in making fun of the way someone dresses or what they look like, then calling someone out for eating something unhealthy or promoting a company that is not fully organic/non GMO.  If you want someone to actually listen to you, how about using your social networks and your blog or even your voice as a platform to educate about the things you have learned instead of forming a mob and pushing it down peoples throats. Every time you make a snide remark or negative comment to someone about their unhealthy eating habits you are taking a huge step backwards towards your end goal.

I recently saw someone personally attacking or should I say bulling a fellow blogger on Twitter because she wrote about giving her kids a half a glass of coke and then this person proceeded to tweet me because I followed this blogger and tell me that I have a lot of “clout” and that I should be standing up for this kind of crap. (This kind of crap?) You know what I did? I lovingly put this person in her place and defended the blogger that she was bullying and I think this person was shocked by my response. I then blocked her from my feed because sometimes you just need to take out the garbage.

Just because I use essential oils and I am growing an organic garden, switched to using coconut oil, quit keeping Soda in my house and making a few other changes, doesn't mean I don't still eat junk food. It's all about moderation, like I said above, there is a misconception that you have to be ALL in or NOTHING. Everyone is going to be at a different walk in their life and should be able to live at their own pace. You should be cheering on that person who is making changes in their lifestyle (even if it is small) or seeking more information instead of picking apart everything they eat on a daily basis or because that one time they gave their kids a half a glass of coke.   I will tell you I went 2 weeks without Dr Pepper. Guess what, I am drinking Dr Pepper again WHY? BECAUSE I LIKE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  However, I am drinking less and made the switch to not even keeping it in my house. I went from drinking one or more than one a day to a few a week. Baby steps!!!

Be careful what you say in public because you could actually be damaging your whole fight. When people hear you talking about other people like that , they don't want to be a part of anything you stand for. Also, be careful what you post about your new found simpler life, are you posting to be informational or are you posting in a way that is judgmental and condescending?

So  I am asking you…. Educate, Encourage, don't Demand and Bully. You will get a lot further in your cause and actually this is good advice for anything you might be an advocate for or passionate about, not just food.   You can't bully someone into living your lifestyle. However, you CAN push them further away from your cause. No ones going to listen to a screaming toddler throwing a fit, however, someone might learn to listen to someone who comes in with a positive attitude ,who has great negotiating skills and facts to back it up.

Now this also goes for all those on the opposite side of this conversation too. Just because someone is passionate about eating healthy and posts a lot of things on their Facebook about it, doesn't give you the right to sit in a corner and gossip about them either. If you are hanging around them or seeing them in your Facebook feed then you are calling yourself, friends and friends don't treat each other that way. The great thing about friendships is we can all have different lifestyles, opinions, etc. and still act like adults and even support each other in our endeavors even though we may not be interested or agree. Why? Because that friend is truly passionate about it and I want to support her because I know she supports me.

I am going to continue to research a simpler lifestyle and continue to make small changes in my family's eating habits but if you see me out in public with a Sonic, Dr Pepper because I've had a really bad day and haven't had one in 4 days and proceed to shake your finger at me I might punch you in the face. (Ok, so I probably would never actually punch you in the face, but I might think strongly about it lol)

For those of you are looking to make small changes in your family's eating habits without stressing yourself out or having the kids and spouse go on strike feel free to email me. I will help you with any information I have found and I promise I won't judge you when I catch you eating that McDonalds cheeseburger. You an also join our CQ Natural & Organic Deals support group and find some fellow friends that are taking baby steps with you!

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  1. Very very true!! I’ve recently joined a P31 exercise group through my church. Making small changes like drinking tons of water and packing a lunch instead of eating out daily. Our groups hash tag is #onesimplechange , it has been one of the hardest thing I’ve done but the best thing as well.

  2. Dear Melissa,
    Thank you so much for bringing this up. It is ridiculous.
    I will give you the example that I find most fascinating: some “advocates” say that you should not it Kashi brand products because the company is owned by a known GMO consumer company. I would think that if anything, buying Kashi in bigger quantities would hit said company where it really hurts and make them reconsider what they should be selling more off…to me, that makes common sense.
    I don’t like GMO. So I go around the store reading labels and I buy non GMO products from ANY company that provides proof that a certain product is non GMO, precisely because I vote with my dollars.
    I feel the health nut vs junk food nut is just as bad as the skinny vs fat fight. There are people online on both sides of both issues being attacked for not taking a strong enough stance. Why can’t we all just do whatever we want to do and then, when we know better we do better.
    Seems to me, trying to shove something down people’s throats usually has the opposite of the desired effect.
    I buy Chiquita bananas, the organic ones. A lot of my neighbors do to. Guess what? At this particular store, they are bringing more organic and less regular bananas. They are from the same company, but the company is giving customers what they want.
    Sorry if I ramble, I just finally found someone that agrees with me on this topic and I find it so refreshing.
    I also want to add that I am one of those people that likes to lean into a lifestyle change. For medical reasons, I have to give up most meat (anything that flies or walks, I can only eat stuff that swims). I am finding it very hard to go cold turkey, so what I decided instead was to make small changes at a time until they become second nature. I think that is the best way to go. Keep doing what you are doing.

  3. This is all so, so true. It is most definitely not an all or nothing and sometimes a little junk here and there is fun. I also try to eat organic, keep away from chemicals and pesticides in my foods, etc., but I certainly don’t try to stuff my beliefs down anyone’s throat. If anything, I think shaming people like that will turn off them and others from wanting to become healthier.

  4. Have I told you lately just how much I love you? I often feel beat up because I love my diet coke. You don’t have to tell me it’s bad for me…I KNOW THAT. But, it’s my personal choice. As a child of the 60’s I put a LOT of things that weren’t good for me into my body (let’s not dig any deeper into that), but I’m still here at 60. It was a PLEASURE to FINALLY read a smart post that wasn’t “all of nothing” because fanaticism is dangerous…even if it’s about something that’s GOOD for you.

    1. I hear you Zippy! You are right it’s your PERSONAL choice and I feel like people who are starting to make small changes often feel they are now being WATCHED. It’s like great you are now cutting out GMO’s but what about that diet soda oh and what about the sugar oh and what about ……. you get the picture. Nothing is ever good enough.

      I am taking baby steps and because of that my family has been more receptive to actually try new things.

  5. I’ll never be one of those “all or nothing” kinds of people. Like you, I try to make the better decisions but you’re apt to see me with a brownie in one hand and a soda pop in the other at some point through my week. I prefer to take baby steps, not giant leaps.

  6. I recently saw a snotty comment on someone’s blog — she used dry cereal as a treat for her kids and a reader went off on it, saying it was artificial and sweet and blah blah blah. Some people have way too much time on their hands!

  7. I soooooo agree! I think some people have an “unhealthy” obsession with their health. I think it is great to watch what you eat, exercise, etc. But, becoming obsessed with it and letting it run your life is not good either. And, you could get hit by a car tomorrow and die… Sure would’ve been nice to have enjoyed a DP or two in your lifetime than to have snacked on a piece of kale everyday

  8. Great post! I hate seeing people bash someone else for any reason. I will admit though, I have a habit of ranting to my mom when I see people complaining about health problems and then posting about the junk they eat & drink. Sometimes I just want to shake them a little and say if you gave up ONE of those things for a month you would start to see a difference. That said, Dr Pepper is my weakness. I don’t drink it often, but I will grab one occasionally when I’m running errands.

    I just read this to my mom and her response was “How about leading by example? You are what you eat, so eat good stuff be good stuff. Otherwise people are going to think if you eat healthy you turn into a NUT”

  9. Thanks for writing an article that I can relate to. My husband is one of those all or none kind of guys, and I simply say I really don’t want to live those extra 5 years if that is what he gets in the end. He smirks. I wish many times that I could eat like that (healthy), but I find it is actually beyond my grasp. I have been eating more and more salads, veggies and fruit, trying to at least balance the Cheetos and chocolate! And have reduced the amount of Dr. Pepper, so there is a start!

  10. Thanks so much for writing this, Melissa. This is actually the best post I have read in a long while. I have witnessed a lot of bullying on social media by bloggers I refer to as the Food Police. It gets rather cruel at times. I too am making some healthy changes in my life. I am taking baby steps, because I know that is the best way for me to make lasting changes. It’s something I am not really sharing publicly, because I don’t want to be criticized for not meeting someone else’s standards for healthy living.

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