“Highway to the Danger Zone. Ride into the Danger Zone.” Kenny Loggins had no idea he was actually singing about hot plate dietary disasters and not hot shot fighter pilots. As November 2015 came around, it brought with it a season that traps, frustrates, and, sometimes, destroys Americans.
This season is called the Diet Danger Zone, which begins at Thanksgiving and doesn’t end until Super Bowl Sunday, if it ever does. During this time, there is a plethora of eating opportunities that lure us into developing bad eating habits, and bad habits lead us so far into the DDZ that it is very hard to find our way out. Heck, we even eat the bread crumbs we dropped along the way which was supposed to help get out of this land of the lost. The DDZ is full of great intentions overcome by bad habits.
Listen, it’s not the weight gain that causes the trouble in the DDZ, it’s the habits we develop over this two or three month time that stealthily and insidiously becomes a part of our normal routines and lifestyles. And, over a longer period of time, these 5-10 pounds we added in the DDZ now become 20-50 pounds before you know it. The DDZ should be off limits to those who intend to live a healthy lifestyle, as many visit but fail to ever come out. Here are some simple directions to follow so that you do not end up in the DDZ. It’s sort of a dietary GPS that never gets you lost, unless you decide to do some dietary off-roading on your own. Good luck with that.
The 5-5-2 Danger Zone Diet Plan: Limit these 5 things (sugar, starch, bread, alcohol, packaged/processed foods) 5 days per week and eat your favorite foods 2 days per week, maybe Friday night through Sunday night. You’ll drive right past the Diet Danger Zone, because there’s nothing there you need anyway. The DDZ should not be on your “to see” list.
-George Mangum M.A., Heritage LifeFit Fitness Director