There are many components to building a healthy and proficient body. One of the most difficult concepts to achieving goals and then maintaining is ones diet. A person's diet is extremely hard to decipher in conjunction with others. We all have different genetic makeups, which make us react differently to foods, compounds, medicines, etc. The difficulty that arises with diet is the ever changing body composition that a human goes through in a lifetime. As we age, there are many factors that could possibly change within us. One of the main problems that people experience is a slowing metabolism. We find that what we could once "get away" with eating does not hold true as we get older. Once a habit is developed with a bad diet, it can be hard to break away from. Many people also fall into the marketing traps that are placed before them and are led to believe that there are quick fix diets that work for everyone. This may hold true for the short term, but the most difficult part of a successful diet is the maintenance portion. As time goes on, our bodies are stimulated more so by certain things and less stimulated as they once were by others. It is up to each and every one of us to monitor what works and what changes to attempt to maintain. Certain foods that once had a positive effect on us could eventually have a negative effect after time and vice versa. Trial and error is the only real way to decipher which holds true. Diet is one of the most researched and studied concepts in the world today and for each study that makes a claim, there is a counter study to refute all evidence of the findings. This problem can theoretically go on forever because we are all going to have different compositions and reactions to different foods, making it impossible to say that one idea will work for everyone. This is one of the reasons that the food guide pyramid was such a failure. It led everyone to believe that they HAD to have certain amounts of certain foods, when in reality, each person has different requirements. One must also cater their diet to what is conducive to THEIR goals. Keeping daily logs and plugging in certain foods and then taking them out after weeks of usage can determine what is working and what is hindering. Just because one things is working for another person does not guarantee that it will work for you. This is a concept that many people have a hard time grasping for several reasons. Tricky marketing is a big factor into causing problems in diets. Another underlying problem is the cost to eat healthy as opposed to having a poor diet based on economics. It seems backwards to me that people are ultimately encouraged to buy things that are not good for them to save money. We should be trying to keep others healthy and allowing them to have more longevity by making better foods more accessible. It is clear that this is a major contributor to the ongoing obesity problem in the United States. Another problem that many have is a simple lack of knowledge about food and understanding how to read food labels. It would be helpful if schools put more of an emphasis on teaching children at a younger age the importance and facts of a healthy diet. When taught at a younger age, it is instilled in their minds how important it is to be healthy and the benefits that eating a much cleaner diet can provide.
Diet will also be an enigma to many because of the complexity that it possesses. Proper guidance and education will help people to better understand it better and will allow them a better opportunity to have a healthier and longer life.