I’ve been eating differently from the mainstream for about 7 years now. I’ve gone through several iterations of “diets.”
Mainly my way of eating changed as different doctors gave me different advice, as I read more books on nutrition, and as I just figured out what worked for me.
I voyaged through gluten- free, then gluten-free and dairy-free, then SCD, then the anti-candida diet and then paleo. Finally I arrived at my current, more moderate way of eating, which I refer to as clean eating.
And somewhere along the way, I stopped explaining. I no longer engage in lengthy conversations about why I choose to eat what I eat. I don’t even really discuss exactly what’s on my “diet” and what’s not.
You know what? This works so much better for me. I am waaay happier to not discuss all the nitty gritty of my eating habits outside of my happy little world here on the blog.
The main reason is that it’s boring. It may not be boring to you, dear reader- you are on my clean eating site after all!- but it is quite boring to others in my life who may not be as passionate about food, cooking, and clean eating. If someone was passionate about restoring vintage cars and that’s all they would talk about, I would find it dreadfully boring. So I figure the reverse it true too. In all likelihood, not many people really care whether I’m eating kombucha or not. They just don’t.
The second reason is that it creates a barrier between me and the other person. I’m really happy with my food decisions, but I’ve come to realize that food can be a super touchy subject and it can come across as judgemental to spout off all my opinions. I never want someone to feel awkward about eating in front of me or intimidated by extending a dinner invitation. So I keep my explanations way more low-key now unless asked.
Thirdly, my eating habits flex. Lentils might be out one week and in the next. As I learn and explore, my food choices change. That’s okay with me. But it gets really weird if I just finished explaining to my coworker why I don’t eat lentils and then I show up with lentil salad 2 weeks later.
The last reason is the eye rolls. I get tired of them. I clearly remember wincing as an acquaintance reported that “normal food wasn’t good enough” for a particular group, as they “were all into clean eating now.” I realized that the term clean eating hits a real nerve with some people and I’d rather not deal with their feelings about it.
You might find it ironic that I have an entire blog dedicated to clean eating and yet I prefer not to talk about it in real life. Don’t get me wrong- I am SUPER passionate about it and I can talk for hours about it. But I’ve learned to save my exuberance and lengthy explanations for people who are equally psyched about it- like you!
Do you explain your eating habits to others? What do those conversations look like? I’d love to know!