My very first post was about the 3 A’s, but it is a fundamental part of why I started this blog, so I want to be sure it doesn’t get lost in the posts!
The 3 A’s – Awareness, Access, & Availability
My mission: Change the way people think about food.
My inspiration: I suppose the best way to explain this is that it is a result of personal experience. I know how I feel when I eat and live well, whether that’s through food, exercise, pursuing my goals and ambitions, or doing my best to focus on the present moment. My inspiration is also an extension of my frustrations with three major inhibitors of HEAlthy EATing (or what I call HEATing). What are those 3 inhibitors? They are lack of Awareness, Access, and Availability.
- Awareness – knowing about what you eat, from the nutritional profile to the resulting health benefits
- Access – being able to obtain nutrient rich foods easily and readily; it should be just as easy to get a bag of vegetables as a bag of chips
- Availability – this is all about supply and demand; nutrient rich foods should not only be sold, but available in appropriate quantities
Here’s an example to put things in context. Ignoring cost for a moment, let’s discuss eating out. People often think eating out = unhealthy. I eat out most of the time, and find that I actually eat better when I eat out, BUT my ability to do so requires 3 things, and guess what those 3 things are…yup they are the 3 inhibitors or 3 A’s – Awareness, Access, & Availability. To illustrate, if you don’t know what it is in the food you eat (Awareness), you don’t know what the most nutritious option is for you to order, and hence eating out becomes a dangerous place to consume food. Now, let’s say you are aware, but you are at the airport, and limited in your options (Access) and the one place you do find with something relatively healthy is out of the product (Availability). Well then, it is going to be quite difficult for one to eat a healthy, nutrient rich meal. Make sense?
I find that I can usually find something decent to eat even when my access and availability are scarce. It’s definitely not simple, but my high awareness makes it easier. For this reason I believe awareness is by far the most important part of HEATing.