Not that long ago, I was talking with a group of people about what I believed an athlete could or should be eating. At the mention of "oatmeal", the crowd grew restless. Later, I realized that "oats" didn't fit in with the neanderthal diet that many of them were following at the time.
I've mentioned this before, but diet isn't something I choose to overthink. But let's ponder this; if one were to simply look at oatmeal from a caloric perspective, is it really so awful? Do these people EVER eat junk food? It's a rhetorical question, because I'm pretty sure they do at least once in a while.
I ate a King-Size Reese's Peanut Butter Cup the other night without even thinking - I'd have to eat about three or four BOWLS of oatmeal to take in the same amount of calories (I'm pretty sure I can't do that without even thinking about it). A can of Coke, for example, has zero protein, 39 GRAMS OF SUGAR, and significantly more calories than a bowl of oatmeal and people are making grains out to be the culprit???
The thing that irritates me the most about the diet-pushers is that, instead of teaching people how to re-love healthy and natural food, they are teaching people to restrict their dietary choices to the point that they will have no choice but to repress urges that, unexamined, will resurface later. As those urges return, so will the weight...
Let's assume an active lifestyle with as little sitting around on our asses as possible (it's a big assumption for many Americans, I know). I believe that...
*a varied diet
*as few highly processed foods as possible
*generous (but not ridiculous) portions
*plenty of vegetables with almost EVERY meal
*very little sugar
*meals four to five times a day
*no or little eating too close to bedtime
*go light on the caffeine
*really, really light on the booze
...is more than enough for most people to be much healthier than the average American. Will you be "ripped"? Maybe not, but I'm guessing that neanderthal man, given any choice in the matter, wasn't ripped either.