I am sure a lot of you have been anticipating this follow up post. I didn’t want to write right away because I’ve learned that it is best to not act on your emotions. So I took the past 2 and half days to read through every single comment on here, facebook, twitter, instagram, tumblr, and other people’s blogs. Then I talked to my close friends, colleagues, and even my parents about my post – how I wrote it – what I meant – and what many of you guys interpreted.
Many times in the past couple days I have opened my laptop to a big blank white page ready to write, only to find myself saying that I need to understand the “other side” more before I say anything.
I feel like this is a pretty important post…perhaps my most important blog post I’ve ever had to write to date.
I appreciate every single one of you for pouring out your thoughts and opinions on here because it shows passion. And life should be lived with nothing BUT passion and purpose. Your discussion was powerful and provoking – but some of it was very tough for me to bear. The “bad” ones that really stepped over the line felt like stabs to my heart that physically made me lose my breath.
Fake instructor. Fat-phobic. Body shamer. Child hater. Judgmental pig. The reason why people commit suicides…
I am not going to fight back at every attack that was made or explain what I meant in every sentence I wrote. Rather, I am going to take this opportunity to tell you what didn’t come through in the last post. And before I say anything else, I want to apologize to anyone who was offended by the way I worded things! I did not mean to alienate you or make you feel bad about yourself. So, I am sorry if I hurt your feelings with my words but please remember…I am your friend and I am watching out for you. And although it may have sounded mean, it was all in the name of love and health.
Yes. So health.
That was what I was trying to get across to you. Not that Honey Boo Boo and her family were disgusting – I actually think they are good, rather interesting people. The problem is not their character, their morals, or their weight. I don’t think there is anything to debate. Let me make that clear. HONEY BOO BOO AND HER FAMILY ARE LOVING PEOPLE. Now, let me make THIS clear. HONEY BOO BOO AND HER FAMILY NEED HELP IN LIVING HEALTHIER LIFESTYLES.
And this is where we debate.
Why do I care? Why is it any of my business? If they don’t ask for my advice, I shouldn’t give it right? WRONG.
If you saw someone hurting themselves, wouldn’t you step in to help? Listen to me when I say this – food is your medicine and medicine is your food. If you are choosing bad foods to put into your body, you are slowly killing yourself. That’s right. Killing yourself.
I am not saying you need to eat clean 100% of the time. You know I appreciate my YOLO meals every once in a while! But slathering butter and sugar on everything is a recipe for death.
How your body looks is not of major concern to me. You could be skinny and unhealthy and overweight and healthy. What I am talking about is – do you want to live to see your grandkids? Do you want to have to pay a bajillion dollars in medical bills because you have diabetes, you can barely breathe, are at risk for heart failure, and will have a heart attack before the age of 30?
I am talking about YOUR HEALTH people. And when the insides suffer, the outside shows too. It could be grayed skin tone, hair falling out, yellowed nails, or excessive fat. You cannot deny that how you fuel your engine won’t affect how your car runs. Too much bad stuff? Your car won’t even start. Ever try to fix a car? Yeah it sucks and it’s a lot of money. Why not prevent the whole situation and just gas it up with the right fuel from the beginning?
I’ll tell you why. Because some people don’t know. And what’s worse, they don’t know that they don’t know.
And that is the scary thing. The right choices begin with being exposed to proper education. I can almost guarantee you that Mama June feeds Honey Boo Boo the way she does because she doesn’t know another way. She feeds her with love yes, but she also feeds toxicity. And if this continues, I also guarantee you that Honey Boo Boo will grow up to have many serious illnesses and could potentially become obese. I worry for her.
By the way, being morbidly obese is a health condition – it’s a disease!!! Not a way to fat shame anyone.
“An individual is considered morbidly obese if he or she is 100 pounds over his/her ideal body weight, has a BMI of 40 or more, or 35 or more and experiencing obesity-related health conditions, such as high blood pressure or diabetes.” – University of Rochester Medical Center
So who I am to tell a mom how to feed her child?
I am a health advocate and fitness instructor who is PASSIONATE about helping people find their truest potential in living happy, healthy lives. None of my business? Pshhh. All of my business. That’s why I exist. If none of us stood up for what we believe in and tried to right a wrong, wow how stagnant would this world be. Evolution and revolution need to happen for PROGRESS. And progress is how we all become more intelligent and well-rounded as a people.
A parent is responsible for the health of their child up until the child becomes an individual who can make health decisions for themselves or in this case, cook for themselves! School can only teach you so much. Real education starts in the home. That’s why at the end of my post I asked you how you think we could help educate people about proper nutrition! Having a grasp, even a mini grasp on what fats, carbs, vitamins, minerals, and calories are will help so many people make an informed decision. If someone chooses to eat an apple pie over an apple because they think it’s still like getting fruits – that is a problem that education can solve. If someone chooses to eat an apple pie as a YOLO meal, that is someone who knows what they’re doing. Do you understand my point here?
I am not telling people what to do – I just want people to know what they are doing.
And that was my ultimate issue with the Thanksgiving Honey Boo Boo episode. How the show was produced made it seem like Mama June didn’t know that what she was feeding her kids was bad for them. In fact it made her seem extremely ignorant. Keyword: seem. That was what upset me to the core. How she said jellied yams with sugar and butter lathered all over it was their fruit serving of the day. Now whether she was kidding or not, who knows. But if she wasn’t, her thinking can be blamed on lack of nutrition education.
Now look, I am not sitting on some “high horse” saying you’re dumb if you don’t know your foods. No no no!!! I am saying that if you don’t know, it’s time to learn. And I wanna be there for you and help create that positive learning environment so that you can nourish your body and feed your minds!!!
You know how I said I wish someone could be there to step in and cook for the family? I really do wish that because I think it’s gotten to a point where they need guidance and someone to lead the way towards a healthier life.
Some of you say, why bother? They are happy the way they are. Yeah. They are happy right now, but how about later? Let them be you say. Well sorry, no, I won’t because I won’t let someone be if I know their bodies will be riddled with disease, pain, and dysfunction in just a matter of years.
I won’t let someone hurt themselves or their families if I can help it. It is my duty.
For those of you wondering why I feel so strongly about this, I want to tell you a story. I think a lot of people now think I hate “fat people” and “don’t know what it’s like” etc. No. Let me tell you something. The Honey Boo Boo show actually hits very close to home for me.
My mom’s family still lives in Vietnam. It is a third world country where having food on the table is a privilege so let’s not even talk about fitness and eating organic. My cousin is obese. His little brother is severely overweight too. Why? It’s because of the food they eat and in the proportions that they eat it. How did it happen?
I once visited my family back in Vietnam years ago when my cousin was a little kid and I remember my grandmother and his mom feeding him whatever he wanted. And as much of it as he wanted. I’m talking pork fat. Fried desserts. Sugar coated candies. It was a way of showing love and affection. But you know…sometimes you can love too much it hurts.
Today my cousin is in college. He is obese and has health problems. It saddens me because they are doing the same thing to his little brother. Food = love to them. More food = more love. My mom came to visit them a few months ago and tried to cook better and tell them why pork fat was bad etc. but it was a frustrating failure. They did not listen. They kept eating the pork fat.
So fine. Maybe pork fat makes them happy right? Let them be right? Well no. My grandmother has had numerous strokes and medical problems because she grew up eating that stuff too. It hurts my mom to see her mother suffer. And it hurts her to see her mom not listening. It hurts to see that eating habits like this pass on from generation to generation due to a lack of education and defiance to understand and CHANGE.
This, guys, is what I was trying to get at in the Honey Boo Boo post. I want you to know that if you see someone hurting themselves and their family (intentionally or unintentionally) you should try to do something about it. And if not directly, then try to find an alternate way to help them. Be a good human being.
No, feeding your kids pork fat and butter won’t hurt them immediately and you probably won’t see it like how punching someone would leave a bruise. But you know what? It’s still hurting them. It just takes longer to realize it.
So yeah. That’s what I have to say. It is 3:25 am and I am in Palm Springs getting ready to teach POP Pilates to a group of kids from the Boys & Girls Club for the Clinton Foundation. It’s a non-profit organization that’s working to tackle childhood obesity - an epidemic that I feel so strongly about.
So for those of you who think I should mind my own business, it’s not happening. Ever.
I’m working to make a difference and to educate as many people as I can to the best of my ability. Through my blog, YouTube, twitter, facebook, instagram, whatever.
By reading this and doing the workouts, you’re helping us all foster a healthier generation. Please do what you can to help others make healthier decisions for themselves and their families. This is the battle we must fight.
Love you forever,
PS – I approve all comments just so you know.