Advice: The Honest Project New Year Resolution

Happy New Year everyone. This is the perfect time for me to say thank you so much for following The Honest Project over the past ten months. It has been a very exciting time for me and on a personal level I am very grateful for your support. I started posting on this site privately back in January and went 'live' with the site in March. As cliched as this may seem, The Honest Project came about as a result of one of my many New Year resolutions last year. Unsurprisingly, I have no idea what happened to the others. So while many New Year resolutions fall by the wayside come mid-January, some can bring about incredibly positive change and open up a world of opportunity. Therefore, rather than dismiss New Year resolutions as lame or cliched, I really wanted to take this opportunity to encourage you to make at least one resolution this year and that is to become more aware of your food choices and how they affect your health, how you feel, your energy levels and even the world around you.

While The Honest Project came about as a result of a New Year resolution, my change in eating habits came about as a result of a different sort of resolution. When I was diagnosed with cancer almonst three years ago, I resolved to do everything in my power to help myself. This means different things to different people. For me, I felt that improving my diet was a really important way for me to help myself. This resolution was born out of a very difficult and challenging time in my life, but I can honestly say, changing my eating habits was a massive achivement and one of the best things I have ever done. Success and achivements in life do not have to be soley judged in relation to our careers, possessions or finances. Taking action and making changes to improve your health and the health of your family through learning about food and becoming more conscientious in your food choices is a massive achievement and of the utmost importance.

Dietary perfection (if even such a thing exists) is not my goal. Rather my goal is to continue to learn about food and to continue to improve my eating habits. For me, my eating habits are primarily driven by health reasons, but there are other important influences in making better food choices. Our food choices affect the environment around us, contributing to climate change. They affect the lives of others including food producers all over the world. They affect animals and wildlife, not only in the obvious way through eating animals and animal products, but also in the destruction of habitats in favour of using land for industrial scale food production. Right now, our current food choices are affecting our planet's ability to produce food in to the future and making the challenge of feeding a growing popution from the finite resoure that is the earth increasingly difficult. These aren't issues reserved for only future generations. These are issues for our own generation. They are not issues that we can leave to governments or to environmental organisations, rather they are issues that we must take personal responsibility for and do so immediately. I definitely don't have the perfect formula or balance and I have much to learn and much more to do to improve my own food choices. I guess for me this is not a once off resolution, but rather an ongoing resolution that requires time and effort.

So returing to The Honest Project's top tip for a worthwhile and important New Year resolution. It is simply to resolve to become more aware of your food choices. To be conscious that the food you chose to eat has direct consequences for your health and wellbeing and the environment. To stop making food choices in automatic mode and instead consider and be conscious of the food you are putting into your body and the affect it is having on your health, your energy levels and the world around you. I would encourage you to have an open mind and to read articles and books about food production and the links between food and wellbeing. It goes without saying, not to believe everything you read and to take some things with a pinch of salt, but there are endless resources out there from which you can inform yourself. Speaking for myself, I am amazed by how little I knew about food before I embarked on this journey. What makes this sense of amazement quite concerning is the large role that food plays in our lives. For this resolution, I have stopped short of urging you to cut out certain foods, or eat other types of food (don't worry, there will be plenty of that in January). I really believe that the key to change is knowledge. Once you begin to inform yourself about food, you will know yourself what changes to make.

I wish you all a very happy New Year and once again, thank you so much for your support in 2015.

#advice #food