You are not the food police

Neither am I.

Once again, I’m inspired by a Facebook post (of mine) from a couple of years ago:

So about the Starbucks multi-colored gross-looking thing …

There are a lot of people posting selfies with them. Good for them.

There are a lot of people posting about the sugar and/or calorie content on said posts.

People. You are not the food police. If people wanted to know how much crap was in them, they’d find out. If they wanted you to tell them, they’d ask. The majority of people are not dumb enough to believe that a pink and blue frozen drink from Starbucks is anything less than horrible for your body, and those who are drinking them don’t care. Lay off. Sheesh.

Police your own eating. Police your kids’ eating. If you’re a teacher or otherwise are in regular contact with kids, police what crap you give them.

That said, if someone asks or otherwise opens a conversation, of course I’ll engage.

Every now and then, I’ll ask a question. (“Does eating that bother your [health condition]?”) Because I’m trying to learn. See what people’s experiences are. I can find out what the current medical advice is fairly easily, but I know that many people have needed to find their own path when it comes to diet and health—most doctors don’t actually know much in this realm—and I like to know everyone’s anecdotes.

But being sanctimonious about what other people are eating or drinking? Rarely.

(I admit to being judgy about people who put soda in baby bottles or sippy cups—ginger ale for an upset stomach notwithstanding—though I’ve never said anything when I’ve seen it. There are lots of behaviors that make me a little crazy because I wish people wouldn’t do them—or would do them less—but I’m not sure that falls under judgment? Maybe.)

There are lots and lots of people who are literally killing themselves (and their children) with their diets. We would all be better off in a lot of ways if this was different.

If this is important to you, lead by example. Talk about it when it comes up. Be active politically. But shaming people about what they’re eating and drinking in the moment? Not useful.

Police yourself.

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