As we grow older, it is inevitable that we become more informed about health and nutrition, but part of me still believes that I’ll never be as healthy or as fit as I was back in high school. Back then I was involved in a very demanding organized sport, fed nutritious food around the clock (except Pop Tarts), and was constantly over-rested.
Sounds amazing now, but I can still remember the urge to seize control of all aspects of my life once university arrived and that included a variety of nutritional pitfalls that exist throughout these years of higher education. The most notable thing is that your access to pizza significantly increases. Lots and lots of sizzling hot pizza pies.
If you’re like me, then you probably did more than a couple of stupid things in college. When I was 20, I decided to be vegetarian for the first and only time. Becoming vegetarian is not the stupid thing. I thought it was a pretty easy transition into a meatless diet, though I mainly sustained myself on bean burritos from Taco Bell. Naturally, that didn’t last long, and I began feeling the regrettable effects of my fast food vegetarian lifestyle.
Looking back, I could blame some things for my bumpy nutritional history, but I think the number one thing is the lack of information and training we received growing up on maintaining a healthy diet. You learn many things throughout primary, middle, and high school, some of which you constantly use, other bits not so much. However, these essential life skills, especially those regarding nutrition are unfortunately not always one of them.
It wasn’t until moving to Beijing that I began to take better care of myself. Maybe it was the health issues that sprung up after making the move, or maybe it was all of the warm water I started consuming as this is the most common remedy here for a variety of ailments, but living in Beijing was a huge part of this transformation.
I would have to say that another factor that helped to advance my overall health was becoming a father. I’m sure plenty of dads can relate to this experience. My life in Beijing pivoted from being a tad too indulgent with the many perks that came with writing for the Beijinger, to finding restraint and becoming borderline monkish at times.
It pleases me that it was the culmination of these experiences and that of the other members of the beijingkids editorial team that helped to shape this issue into a tool for you and your family to navigate Beijing’s health and nutritional landscapes. We tried to address as many of your health concerns or ways to improve your familial environment as possible in 64 pages. Things ranging from organic and vegetarian school lunches (pg 41) to how a very amazing little lady copes with serious allergies in Beijing (pg 21) have all been reported on to give you a better idea of all that you can expect to experience here in the capital.
While moving to a place like Beijing isn’t always easy, the essentials to not only live in health but to also teach health to your children are all here, and this is something that we wanted to emphasize in each section of our “Fall Into Health” issue.
This article originally appeared on pg 5 of beijingkids October 2017 issue.
Download the digital copy here.