Are you in a bad relationship?

by Donna Benjatschek

Have you struggled with keeping in a healthy weight range for some time now? Have you tried every diet program known to mankind? Of course, they work for a while and then you fall off the wagon, or you reach your goal and think now I can finally go back to “some normal eating.” Let’s compare bad eating habits to being in an unhealthy relationship.

When I was in my 20s, I met a guy who looked pretty amazing on the outside. He had movie-star quality looks, was very charming and athletic. I thought he would be very good for me, but I soon realized he had some major issues. I kept dating him because I thought I could help him and that our relationship would be fantastic.

Guess what? That didn’t happen. After breaking up a few times, I finally had enough and was ready to move on.

Why am I telling you this? A lot of us are in an unhealthy relationship with food. We think that liter of ice cream or that bag of potato chips is going to be great for us and make everything in our life better. They do taste great, but often they make us feel tired and craving something more. It just might be time for us to break up with the food that is constantly calling our name. What would happen if you started dating some amazing, healthy foods and see how you feel?

Mr. Sugar has been my unhealthy food relationship for many years. I am disciplined with exercise and eating healthier in general, but when it comes to the “sweet stuff” it was hard to stop once I started. I decided my health was more important than Mr. Sugar, so I am in the process of breaking up once and for all. Mr. Whole Foods is taking his place and I have never felt better. I now have experienced the benefits of a good relationship. I have tons more energy and I sleep better. When you experience a good relationship, who needs the unhealthy one anymore?

I am going to challenge you to evaluate the relationship you have with food right now. Does Mr./Ms. Sugar, Mr./Ms. Processed Foods have an unhealthy hold on your life? Well guess what, you deserve better and you can choose to break up. Be honest with yourself…please! If this food has had an unhealthy control over your life for a long time, it could be your time to make a permanent change.

Take a long, hard look at what you potentially are getting out of your relationship with Mr./Ms. Sugar. Here are just a few: weight gain, negative effect on your immune system, the growth of cancer, premature aging and wrinkles, and cardiovascular disease, to name a few.

Why on earth would I want to stay in a relationship with this guy? Maybe we feel deep down that we do not deserve better or sometimes we just don’t have the strength to break up.

Start with baby steps. Try breaking up for a week and see how you feel. If you have been in this relationship for a long time, you could possibly be addicted and go through some withdrawal symptoms. Remember you can’t just break up, you need to replace it with a healthier choice.

Want ideas on how to break up? This is what my column in Truck West will address, so let’s do this together.


Donna Benjatschek is an experienced health and nutritional coach based out of Calgary, Alta. Her participation in the Healthy Trucker initiative has launched a passion for helping people in the transportation industry live the benefits of healthier food and exercise choices. Donna can be reached at

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