May 5, 2015

If it Quacks Like a Duck....It's a Duck!

If you have kept your eyes on the news lately you would have heard about the Australian food blogger who came clean about lying to her readers.  As the story goes, she proclaimed that she beat cancer by eating whole foods and changing her lifestyle.  What's more, after she made this, albeit courageous, statement she concluded by stating....she's only human.  I would suggest a woman that lies to people struggling with cancer (and desperate to heal) pretending that she cured herself with whole food is subhuman...but that's just me. In my opinion, she shouldn't get away with it...but she will (in this life anyway).

Today, I came across an interesting article on the nutritional quackery that is permeating our blogs and Internet.  Although this doesn't come as a surprise and my own blog has been dedicated to challenging those that want to sell snake oil, it made me sick that these are the people who get quoted and written up in the media...all...the...time.  The collective media is naive, blind, gullible, and lacks critical thinking skills and should be ashamed of its' collective self.  It is a rare thing when I read something on health and fitness in the media that is correct or up to date. With all those dedicated professionals out there with the education and research to back them up...why do people gravitate to the phoneys? Is it because they are young, slender, and beautiful? Is it because they have published a sleek and impressive looking book? Could it possibly be the package that sells; the package that is primary while the information is secondary. It's looking like it, but I don't want to say it out loud. That would be a very scary commentary on our society as a whole...(but I think that's the case).
Our liver's job is to rid our body of toxins.
No one needs a body cleanse, detox product
or special diet to do this for you.  It's snake oil
at its best! Eating a wide variety of veggies
and making them the largest part of each meal
is the best detox ever! ....but they don't come in
sleek packages sold by celebrities.

Anyone can call themselves anything if you think about it. I know a woman who has a 2 year certificate in nutrition calling herself a nutritionist (because she can). I know another who is proclaiming she can rid you of body fat holding a 1 year "health coaching" certificate (because she can).  I know a ton of personal trainers out there promising the moon to people (because they can). If there is one thing I know about knowledge and education...a little is dangerous. The less you know, the more you think you know.  Conversely, the more you know and learn, the less (you slowly realize) you know. I hold 3 degrees related to behaviour change....and I have no clue what the answer is to life long behaviour change....but maybe that's just me.

Take the fitness industry...please (he he).  As I surf Pintrest and read the latest in the Globe and Mail touting the three "must" exercises for slender, long legs or tight tummy or whatever body part you want to change...I shake my head in utter disgust and amazement.  Most exercises on Pintrest and in the media are STILL (in this day and age...with all we know about exercise physiology) promoting spot reduction.  News flash!!! You cannot obtain longer, leaner legs by doing a leg exercise. You cannot get a "flat belly" by doing sit ups, crunches, isometrics, or hanging upside down (although if people thought hanging upside down would make them skinny, longer, and would be seeing an upside down exercise spa (and the latest fitness gear neccessary to do it) open up on the corner).  I wish I could get rid of my wings by doing triceps push ups...but it isn't going to happen. 

I haven't found the Canadian
equivalent to this, but it is a
great example of those watch-
dogs at work.  Good advice.
I would love to think that my rantings would make a positive change or rid the world of those people who exploit our desperation for beauty...but, alas, I don't believe I'm that powerful (or young, or beautiful, or slender) enough.  Critical thinking is the key when you are watching Dr. Oz, Dr. Phil, or any TV doctor that has been promoted by a celebrity. We need to question that blogger when she makes claims that whole foods eradicate cancer.  We need those researchers and educated professionals to serve as watchdogs for the rest of us.

...if we don't, we could find ourselves spending way too much time upside down.


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