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Let's Talk About Ditching the Diet Mentality

By: Katherine Clevenger and Sarah Shanahan, MS, RDN, LD

We’ve had a bit of a crisis of faith about what it means to truly support you all - our customers, friends, and family - in light of our ties with the “weight-loss industry.”

In short, we’re over dieting culture.

Historically, we've billed Good Measure Meals as a weight-loss meal plan, but what we believe as registered dietitian nutritionists regarding dieting has evolved quite a bit since we got started in 2005.

While we continue to stand by the structure and development of our meals, we have seen a lot of harm come from the weight loss and diet industry as a whole. Dieting has turned into a term with a lot of baggage – for good reason – and that is so far from our goals at Good Measure Meals that it makes us cringe. We seek to repair, not negatively play into, the culture around healthy eating. Ultimately, our goal is to provide helpful tools to develop healthy, balanced eating habits that become second nature and life-long patterns.

At the same time, as the folks cooking and delivering meals for you, we can’t talk about our meal plans as being healthy in vague terms, since “healthy” doesn’t technically mean anything specific. We have to define our “healthy,” and stand by each of our meals as nutritious for our customers. Still, we don’t want reinforce the idea that there is a silver bullet for what healthy looks like. Because, ultimately, it looks different for everyone (more on that later).

So, below, is what we, at Good Measure Meals, stand for. We’re navigating this winding road of supporting healthy while ditching the diet mentality, and we invite you to learn a little more about what we believe and join us on the journey of finding our healthy - and your healthy as well.

We believe in the power of plants, protein, and heart-healthy fat.

As Americans, we under-consume vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and heart healthy oils, while over-consuming saturated fat, refined grains, salt, and sugar. If we can start to shift these patterns by eating more plants (those things we under-consume now) and balancing those plants with lean protein and heart-healthy unsaturated fat, we can become a healthier population as a whole.

We believe that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to healthy eating.

We truly believe that healthy eating is a balance that constantly fluctuates with situations and seasons over the course of a lifetime. We also believe that healthy eating will inevitably look different for every person, with cultural background, socioeconomics, preferences, and access all factoring into how we are able to healthfully enjoy our food.

However, as we mentioned earlier, Good Measure Meals has a responsibility to our customers to set and meet specific nutrition targets for our meals. And the reason we set the standards that we do is because we believe them to be the best nutritional foundation for the greatest number of people. We not only balance calories to accommodate for the quantity of food, we also balance macro-nutrients to accommodate for the quality of nutrition in every single meal. We follow the macro-nutrient ranges set by the Food and Nutrition Board of the Institute of Medicine to provide the lowest risk of chronic disease and the highest satisfaction around.

We also develop our meal plans to allow for choice and customization. Besides portion size, you can choose one, two, or three meals a day; five or seven days a week; and you can customize each and every meal to meet your preferences. We’re a team of folks who love to eat, and we expect our food to be delicious, so we infuse as much variety and flavor into our menus as possible! Ultimately, we’re here to suit the needs of as many of you as we can by establishing a solid nutrition foundation that contains plenty of options.

We believe in empowering you.

Our customers come and go from our meal plans regularly, and we love that. Everyone comes to us with different goals, and not everyone is looking for a total meal prep overhaul – some simply want dinner ready at the end of a long day, or an easy grab-and-go lunch option. Others are ready to quit the kitchen completely, and we’re here as your support system, no matter your journey.

We want to inspire you to craft your own healthy meals, and we want to provide you with an option when you need the convenience of meal delivery. We aim to be a resource for you, whether you’re going through a hectic season and you need to spend time outside of the kitchen, or you’re working on a health-related goal and need a helping hand.

Ultimately, we believe that the most important thing about you has little to do with the food you eat.

Food is an important way to fuel your body to do great things, and it is an incredible means for connecting with others and adding flavor to life – in more ways than one! But what makes you unique and memorable has little to do with the food you eat (or the size of your clothes). At Good Measure Meals, we hope to be able to give you a little more time to pursue what makes you you by taking care of the cooking.

So back to our crisis of faith.

You may still choose Good Measure Meals because you’d like to lose weight, and we are still here to support you on your journey and empower you as you seek health, no matter what that looks like.

But, we believe that a nutrition journey is just that – a journey. You won’t see us advertising 30-day fixes, promoting detoxes, cutting out entire food groups, or putting our endorsement behind very low-calorie meal plans. If someone comes to us looking for one of these types of plans, we hope to inspire them to find a more balanced and sustainable path to their end goal.

What you will see is us holding steady with our foundational nutrition standards of caloric and macronutrient balancing - highlighting plants, protein, and heart-healthy fats - no matter what new fads pop up in a month or in a year.

You’ll see all different types of people and bodies in our ads, because we believe that healthy takes on all shapes and sizes and cultures. (A note on that: we often simply use our team members as our “models,” and if you’d like to volunteer in one of our next photoshoots, we’d love to include you!)

You’ll also see us promoting healthy balance beyond the plate, because healthy encompasses mind, body, spirit, and community. This point cannot be overstated.

Ultimately, we are here as your resource – convenient meal plans, personal nutrition counseling, and curated insights to help empower you wherever you find yourself in this moment. And as a social enterprise, you’ll always find us at the intersection of healthy food and social good, striving to empower our neighbors in need with every delicious bite we take.

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