We are image-sick in this country. Everywhere you go, you see airbrushed and edited images of regular people. It has become much worse over the last fifty years with our digital technology. We can’t go to the grocery store without being reminded at least ten times that, physically, we are less than perfect. Our country’s kids are idolizing people with “perfect” bodies and at times going to drastic measures to “be” like them.
Unfortunately American obsession with appearance has taken a bite out of our corporate health. Sure, there are many ways to look good, but most of them are not healthy. Obviously, the difficult and least traveled road is to exercise regularly and eat the food God intended us to eat. What is popular in the U.S. is diet fads. Usually what happens in these cases is we “try” the diet, it gives us something to talk about at work and with friends, we lose about 20 lbs, we get tired of it, slack off, and gain 25 lbs back until we start the next fad diet. If these diets are so effective and healthy, then why are the obesity and diabetes rates soaring?
“Seriously, what in the world does this have to do with my relationship with my boyfriend/girlfriend?” On the surface it may seem like it has nothing to do with your relationship, however, if you choose to marry each other, your life together will take you to unexpected stops. Perhaps you are in great health now. You are likely young and more active than someone twenty years older than you. If you are not careful, married life can calm down your activity. Maybe you are one of those couples that cannot get enough physical activity; if so, that is great, but couples like that are not in the majority. Often after dating ends and married life begins, couples go out fewer times. They don’t just go out on dates less, they go out of the house less. When dating, we are always in and out seeing each other; but, once we live in the same place, we can easily plop on the couch with our favorite snacks for our favorite reality shows. Without realizing it, the pounds start to creep on and our clothes magically shrink. We will likely blame the dryer at first, but after our entire wardrobe shrinks, we will likely notice an alarming change in our bodies. We may start to feel less comfortable with physical intimacy and we may be less willing to engage in social situations. If not taken care of, this will negatively affect your relationship. So, what am I suggesting?
This topic is just to serve as a warning. This is a topic Eric and I wished others would have told us to discuss prior to marriage. Physical health is important to the vitality of your relationship. Perhaps there are some genetic health concerns that cannot be helped, but a great number of health problems in this country stem from our lifestyle, lack of exercise, and eating habits. Before marriage, it is preferable that you and your potential spouse get in the habit of exercising and eating well. If you can, you may want to consider exercising together at a gym or seeing a nutrition coach. Starting your relationship off on a healthy foot and keeping up the habit of eating right, exercising and living well, will keep you and your potential spouse from having to turn to fad diets and other unhealthy attempts to lose weight. Physical health is so much more important than magazine perfection. If you think taking time to care for yourself is a selfish act, consider it something you do for the future health of your relationship.