The author, Jason Elkins, lists a typical day’s diet. As one who has researched healthy foods and how different foods affect our bodies, I am impressed with how this couple stretches their calories to include such a varied list of good-for-you foods. (One more time, I am not saying you should start a 500 calorie per day diet.)
What struck me (and the part that relates to this blog) were the reactions from Mr. Elkins’ friends.
The comments from some well meaning friends have been interesting:At this point, the author recounts meals from a day before beginning this diet. The pancakes, eggs, Quizno’s sandwich, take-out pizza and dessert add up to around 4000 calories. Wow.
“You can’t live on that.”
“You’ll gain all of your weight back right away.”
“500 calories is starving yourself and it won’t work.”
“That’s not healthy dude.”
I thought for a long time about that last statement. “Not Healthy”… I calculated what I ate a few Saturdays ago.*
Why are his friends suddenly take an interest, negative at that, in his food intake? Mr. Elkins theorizes, ”I think it’s part of our culture to ignore excess in things but be very concerned about lack.”** Ironically, Mr. Elkins’ more recent low-caloric diet probably has more nutrition than his previous high-caloric diet.
I think we become uneasy around something abnormal. We don’t know how to respond to behaviors that are “out of the box.” As a society, we are conditioned to believe that more is better. Therefore, less must be bad. So a 500 calorie diet must be worse than a “normal” diet (which may be up to 4000 calories). We don’t even stop to ask what the content of the diet is before drawing our deductions. Do you see the lie (more is better) and false conclusion (less is bad)?
Let’s re-condition our thoughts. Remember that self-control is a fruit of the Spirit.
Additionally, “’Everything is permissible for me’- but not everything is beneficial. ‘Everything is permissible for me’- but I will not be mastered by anything.” (1 Cor. 6:12) Let’s not be mastered by our diet, be it good or bad, high in calories or low.
You can read "Lessons from a 500 Calorie a Day Diet" by clicking the article link under my profile.
* Elkins, Jason. "Lessons from a 500 Calorie a Day Diet." Transparent Christian Magazine When our lives reflect the brightest light, we become Transparent. . N.p., n.d. Web. 4 Oct. 2010.