You can find schools of thought touting reasons to give up red meat (it causes colon cancer, heart attacks, mad cow disease) or really meat or animal products of any kind (you could get bird flu, for one thing, and it’s just all around bad), gluten (a high risk of death in those with undiagnosed sensitivity), sugar and carbohydrates (they feed cancer and diabetes), a variety of fruits and nuts (if you’re sensitive, you could get sick and not even know why), another variety of fruits and veggies (causes inflammation), cooked food, uncooked food, etc etc etc.

Lesson learned: if you eat food, you will have health problems. And if you stress out about your diet, you will have health problems.

Hence, we should all become anorexic. Forswear food. Subsist on pure oxygen.

I have these two warring factions within me: the self-improving side, and the self-deprecating side. The experimental side and the skeptical side. The side that wants to be healthy, and the side that says healthy is eating whatever you want as long as you don’t totally pig out. The side that suspects there’s something wrong, and the side that says it will definitely be wrong if I become the person who asks “does this contain ….?” at every party or restaurant or dinner. The side that suspects if I change my diet, I will have more energy, and gain weight, and the side that suspects if I stop eating even one thing I may disappear entirely.