Ethnographic Project Essay

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According to popular belief, the only constant in existence is transformation. Mentioning that transition is unavoidable may sound soothing, but voicing it by putting it into practice in actual-world situations makes life not only unique but also important. This paper describes an experience of changing one’s diet over a set period of time, not to lose weight, but to experience a transformation and improvement in one’s life. My partner, Ria, began a seven-day diet reform and embarked on a novel diet regimen that yielded not only mixed reactions but also raised many challenges. In the new diet regime, Ria decided to restrict her diet points to 26 instead of the proposed 32 points following information she found in a website shared by colleague in the discussion forum. It happened that Ria was struggling to maintain their weight at 26 points and some point deviated from the regime. Ria sometimes felt too hungry because keeping up with the program was difficult for them. Ria also found it troublesome keeping the record and sticking to 32 points. Additionally, my partner deviated from the diet by going out for a friend’s birthday and drinking a lot which affected their diet plans. My partner felt hangover after the party and could not, therefore, keep up with the diet plan. The partner felt hungry and unable to maintain the diet hence they had to relapse to eating a snack which is not good for their health. Further, the partner was finding it difficult to make it to 26 points because of being busy and forgetting to eat up to very late. This to them was very frustrating and disrupted their day.

My partner, Ria, also learned to train more often and avoid eating excess of snacks or fast foods, but they could not stick to their plan. This indicates the challenges inherent in trying to keep proper dieting. Though it may be straining one’s energy and taking a lot of time, healthy eating and exercising are necessary for having a good health and body. The partner’s experience also reveals that for one to successfully maintain healthy living, they have to endure and avoid things like alcohol whose consumption or uptake may interfere with the training as far as healthy eating and dieting are concerned. Their 7-day diet with weight and watcher points showing the types or forms of food the partner took during this period including snacks and binge demonstrates the need for one to change their eating habits and styles to include only healthy foods that enable their bodies to be able to fend off or fight infections and diseases.

From this experience by my partner, it is evident how the kind of diet that people keep and their forms of eating have a significant influence on their health. As shown by the partner’s experience, it is important for one to stick to a healthy eating plan or scheme to enable them to live healthy lives and keep most diet-related complications, disorders, and diseases at bay.

How Different Form of Eating Affect People’s Health

The type of food or diet that an individual takes usually determines the course that their life takes. There are some foods and types of eating habits that can positively affect one’s health while there are others that may equally have detrimental effects on a person’s health. This is because diet plays an important role in speeding recovery from injuries, preventing or treating chronic diseases, and maintaining or promoting good health. The eating habits such as the eating of too many sugary or fatty foods such as fast foods may negatively affect one’s health by increasing the likelihood of them developing overweight or obesity problems. Such type of eating may also affect one’s health by exposing them to cardiovascular diseases such as heart attack and diabetes. This is because such foods increase the sugar levels in the body and bloodstream.

According to Craig, the taking of vegetarian diets or foods has many health benefits given that most vegetables are rich in unsaturated fats, phytochemicals, magnesium, potassium, vitamins C and E, folic acid, and fiber. Such diets are also free of cholesterol and saturated fats that are known to cause various health complications to the human body (16275). According to this author, “vegans tend to be thinner, have lower serum cholesterol, and lower blood pressure, reducing their risk of heart disease” (Craig 16275).

Furthermore, according to Burkert, et al., it has been consistently shown through population-based studies that the type of diet that one keeps influences their health in significant ways (1). The results of their study also indicate that a vegetarian diet leads to less frequent alcohol consumption and lower body mass index. However, at the same time, a vegetarian diet is also associated with poorer quality of life, a higher need for health care and poorer health. According to them, an individual’s diet has significant impacts on their health and wellbeing (2). While some diets such as vegetarian diets are related to certain cancers, stroke, gallstones, type II diabetes, coronary artery disease, chronic degenerative diseases, cholesterol problem, and hypertension, others like meaty diets adversely affect health as they cause various illnesses.

Furthermore, a study by Yau and Potenza shows that there is a positive relationship between various eating behaviors and stress or depression which ultimately affects the human health. Eating habits and behaviors such as food preferences may affect someone’s health by leading to addiction to certain types of food that are not healthy for the body (Yau & Potenza 255). Some of these forms or types of eating also affect people’s health by increasing their susceptibility to obesity and the related health complications that come with weight gain. The types of eating that emphasize on snacks, for example, may have detrimental effects on peoples’ health as they contribute to too much fat and sugar in one’s blood that exposes them to high body mass indices.

Certain types or forms of eating may also lead to eating disorders which adversely affect an individual’s quality of life. Unhealthy and abnormal eating habits and lifestyles, for example, could lead to someone developing eating disorders, such as anorexia nervous, bulimia nervous, and binge-eating disorder. Habits such as refusing to eat or eating excessively could lead to imbalances in the sugar levels in the blood thus leading to health complications. These eating disorders may affect one’s health by increasing the possibility of them suffering from other conditions associated with the disorders and hence lowering their quality of life.

Additionally, in their study, Shridhar et al. examined the impact that the modern diet has on human health. The findings of the study show that many health problems, particularly in the developed world, are usually caused by poor diet or the poor eating habits. According to them, today’s foods and eating behaviors have several adverse impacts on the human health as they are associated with ailments such as arthritis, diabetes mellitus, cardiac problems, dehydration, and food poisoning. The consumption of unhealthy food in the less developed world also has severe impacts on the human health as they cause various health complications that may otherwise be prevented through proper dieting. The type or form of eating and the actual diets that individuals take in their diet have serious effects on reproduction, survival, and quality of life.

According to Myles, the consumption of fast food in the western world has affected the quality of life of the population by exposing people immune-mediated diseases (1). The author argues that the overconsumption of saturated fat, salt, and refined sugars has had significant negative effects on people’s health due to increased risk of auto-inflammatory and allergic diseases, increased rates of cancer, reduced ability of the body to fight infection and increased inflammation. The diet which in most cases comprises of too much refined sugar, salt, reduced omerga-3 intake and high intake of omega-6 fatty acids affects people’s life by rendering them exposed and vulnerable to attack by various diseases. Further to this, as Farhud, lifestyle also has significant impacts on human life as it affects the health of the population (1443). Unhealthy lifestyles lower the quality of life of people by making them prone to disability, illness, and sometimes death. It also increases the risk of such people suffering from hypertension, cardiovascular diseases, skeletal or joint problems, and metabolic diseases. The reason for this, the authors argue, is because of the strong relationship or correlation between health and lifestyle. Unhealthy lifestyles such as drug abuse, alcohol consumption, smoking, unhealthy diet, and malnutrition also have the effect of lowering the quality of life of the population by exposing them to various related illnesses.

Conclusion

In closing, my personal thought based on these third party sources is that the type or form of food that a person takes has a substantial impact on their health and ultimately affects the quality of their lives in numerous ways. Poor eating habits or behaviors, for instance, are known to affect people’s life by exposing them to a variety of illnesses that are associated with poor dieting and eating styles. Furthermore, from my partner’s experience, it may be noted and equally argued that the type or firm of eating affects people’s lives by interfering with their efforts to sustain a healthy living. It also makes people be less careful or concerned about the potential impacts of unhealthy foods such as fast foods on their health and lives.

Works Cited

Burkert, Nathalie T., Johanna Muckenhuber, Franziska GroßschädL, Éva Rásky, and Wolfgang Freidl. Nutrition and Health – The Association between Eating Behavior and Various Health Parameters: A Matched Sample Study.” PLOS ONE, vol. 9, no. 2, pp. 1-7

Craig, Winston J. “Health Effects of Vegan Diets.” The Clinical Journal of Clinical Nutrition, vol. 89, no. 3, 2009, pp. 16275-16335

Farhud, Dariush D. “Impact of lifestyle on health.” Iranian Journal of Public Health, vol. 44, no. 11, pp: 1442-1444

Myles. Ian A. “Fast Food Fever: Reviewing the Impacts of the Western Diet on Immunity.” Nutrition Journal, vol. 13, no. 61, pp. 1-17

Shridhar, G., Rajendra N2, Murigendra, Shridevi, Prasad, Mujeeb, Arun, Neeraj, Vikas, Suneel D, and Vijay K. “Modern Diet and its Impact on Human Health.” Journal of Nutrition & Food Sciences, vol. 5, no. 430. doi:10.4172/2155-9600.1000430

Yau, Yvonne H.C., and Marc N. Potenza, “Stress and Eating Behaviors.” Minerva Endocrinologica, vol. 38, no. 3, 2013, pp. 255-267

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