This is a very interesting debate. It occurred to me as I learn more about healthy eating & weight loss. “And” vs “or” confronts us in many facets of our lives.
Lots of foods are healthy for us to eat. Today I ate avocados and oatmeal and vegetables and blueberries and nuts. While they are all healthy for us to eat, for weight loss you can only eat so many carbohydrates and fat at each meal.
While eating our pizza we ate avocado, an orange, blueberries, a banana and some nuts. “I ate healthy” we proclaim. Not good. Besides the fact that the pizza is not the best of foods to eat from a nutrition standpoint, eating both the avocado and nuts caused us to eat too much fat. Eating the orange, blueberries and a banana caused us to eat way too many carbohydrates with our meal (especially given the pizza crust and ingredients in the pizza that were carbs).
Using “and” in our lives is easy. We do it all of the time because it feels good to do. We eat pizza and our fruits & veggies and maybe some ice cream. It felt good to do. We exercise three times a week and enjoy the largest of meals and it feels good that by exercising we believe we are healthy.
We just bought a car and are going to buy a house and I am going to exercise more and work on Saturday’s for more money and…….. It sounds almost too good to be true!
What happens when instead of “and” we choose to use the word “or”? Will I have some nuts or the avocado today? Will I eat the fruits and veggies or the ice cream today? Will I buy the car right now or save money to buy a house in the near future? Will I exercise or have a big meal today?
When using “or”, it forces you to think about a second or third option and then forces you to choose between them. “And” just keeps adding options to your to do list.
Using “or” forces us to narrow our focus so that you can be more effective with the choices you make. It’s definitely harder to do because you immediately set yourself up for internal conflict. “And” is so much easier.
I notice we use “and” way too much in our lives. When problem solving, solutions offered always are stated as the answer to correct five different things instead of the one thing that is most important to solve. The result? The solution ends up being too weak to change much.
In personal matters, especially when younger, everything is possible. As we get advice from others, we pile all of their ideas on as things we need to get done. We want to exercise and have our chocolate so that we can lose weight.
Making use of “or” in both our conversations as well as our thinking, can strengthen our choices for the better. First by forcing us to consider a second way that something might be possible as well as keeping us better focused on completing one thing at a time.
Nutrition is a complicated subject. Trying to really understand the difference between “and” & “or” not so much. Using “or” much more difficult. “And” & “or” are at the door to the choices we make. Recognize them for both their danger & value as your life continues to evolve.