I’m currently indulging in the gentle warmth, yet deceivingly abrasive UV-rays of the San Diegan sun, an activity I like to incorporate into my daily life. However, today, I feel okay about this indulgence for several reasons, of which none might actually be sufficient. One, I just ate a s*** ton of carrots. And I read yesterday in Women’s Health, that this “superfood”, due to its immense amount of beta-caretone, may prevent, and in some cases, actually reverse some sun damage. And if you read something in a magazine, its definitely reflective of the whole and honest truth. No room for debate or interpretation. Right…?
Secondly, I not only sipped coffee this morning before work, but I also took Chase Bank up on their generous offer of free coffee (I may have also taken a “no sugar added Swiss Miss Hot Chocolate Mix. What? Isn’t it there to be utilized?) in exchange for holding the somewhat underwhelming amount of money in my checking account. You are probably confused as to why I am now discussing coffee in some far fetched relation to UV rays and sunlight. Well, Women’s Health also enlightened me on the fact that apparently caffeine has been shown to lessen ones susceptibility to obtaining the nasty, and unfortunately common, phenomenon known as skin cancer. What was intriguing was the not-so-obscure lack of information on the participants in this study – were these caffeine drinkers also nocturnal vampire-wanna-bes? After all, the infamous Cullen family of surprisingly sexy vampires celebrities have made quite the impression on society these days. Or were these caffeine drinkers of a certain ethnicity? Perhaps the non-caffeine drinkers were all from the Land Down Under of No-Ozone? Nonetheless, I sit basking in my San Diego sun, hoping it will kiss me all over, in an attempt to highlight the quarter-Indonesian in me, and fool people into forgetting about the three-quarters European mutt-mix of utterly pale Caucasian descent which I also have been endowed with.
Thirdly, I feel deserving of my slightly unnecessary sunlight and vitamin D intake because I blindly trust the makers of Banana Boat Sunscreen when they so kindly inform me that my SPF 30 sunscreen will protect me from the sun’s harmful UVA and UVB rays for up to 80 minutes.
Most importantly, however, I, for some unbeknownst reason, trust myself to make informed decisions about all of this crap. And I trust myself to have some faith in the life that lay ahead of me. Do I live in incessant fear of obtaining skin cancer since I happen to fancy sitting in the sun? No. Am I able to comprehend the fact that this could be potentially harmful to myself? No, I am not blindly and naively convincing myself I am invincible. It is this balance, this deciphering of crap from non-crap, this participation in a lifestyle of moderation in a world of excess, and this striking a chord between being blissful ignorant and cynically informed by which I attempt to live my life. And in doing so, I attempt to maintain a healthy lifestyle in all manifestations of the word health – mental, physical, emotional, etc. But mainly the physical because, lets be honest, I am a self-ascribed fitness freak and a full-fledged foodie. So yet again, I must balance my inconceivable infatuation with food must with a pervasive passion for fitness.
So after all that mind-numbing talk of carrots, caffeine and sunscreen, essentially I am urging you to find balance and moderation in your life- both as a means of living and as a means of thinking. Moderate the information you trust (like the idea that if you touch a piece of carbs you will suddenly be obese). Moderate the information you wish not to believe (like that to keep your heart, mind and body healthy you might have to actually get off your bottom and be active for at least 30 minutes a day – the horror of using the muscular system you were so graciously given at birth!). And please, moderate your sedentary lifestyle and your under-nourished diet. Balance. Moderation. Yes, easier said than done. But being unhealthy, sick and absurdly overweight is sadly easier done than said.
[run, eat shrimp and drink beer, all in moderation. Mainly moderate beer.]