Weighty Matters

Just another WordPress.com site

Holiday Sweets

Recently a local doctor wrote a letter to the editor for one of our hometown newspapers.  I used to use this doctor several years ago as my primary care physician.  She also had a sub-specialty of working with obese patients.  For a while she served as the county’s medical health chief, too.  The doctor has always spoken out about weight and health issues.

Her letter was an open and deliberate request to patients and anyone else who visits her office during the holiday season.  Bottom line, she asked that they not express their thanks to her and her staff with gifts of food.  She appreciates their appreciation and hoped that they would understand that sugary sweets, baked goods and the like are not healthy for her and her staff.

While she couched the request as a personal one for her practice, it was pretty clear that she expressed this through a letter to a newspaper so that she could emphasize a strong point to the public at large.  Obesity is a significant issue in our country.  Our society tends to celebrate with food.  We’re compounding our own collective problems.  I admire her for taking the stand and hope that she doesn’t get a backlash for it or accused of holiday food-Scroogery.

I know that when lots of food surrounds me, I have a really difficult time saying no to it.  We get a fair amount of sweet treats sent to our office this season, too.  It sits in the office kitchen calling to me and I struggle not to indulge.

There is, however, one company that always sends our president a smoked turkey.  We plan a lunch around it with different people bringing a few side dishes.  We end up making a far healthier celebratory event with the turkey as the center.

This year, I’m hoping for more savory, healthy snacks than sugar/fat/carb laden ones.  Sadly, I don’t expect anyone to send a holiday basket of fresh veggies, but maybe some fruit, or even cheese.  I could handle proteins and fruit in smaller batches.  Not being constantly beset by food temptations would definitely make my holidays sweeter.

Leave a comment »

Foods That Make You Go Eww

I’m wrapping up the last of the trips I’d planned for the last several weeks. Two were pleasure – New Orleans in May and this trip up to see family and friends in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. One was business with that day of Disney included. I’ve enjoyed everything and spending time with people I love, but I’m ready to be home without travel for an extended period of time.

I had an evening flight last week so by the time I got to the airport, it was dinner time. Sadly, I’d screwed up and left my cheese wedges in my checked bag, so I got in a long line for one of the restaurants on the concourse. Standing in the slow moving line, I studied the posted menu. Famous hot dogs. Famous hot dogs with cheese. Famous hot dogs with cheese and chili. French fries plain or with the other toppings. Various burgers and cheeseburgers.

All stuff that, in the past, would have made me drool like a Pavlov dog. I could definitely be an adult with a teenage boy’s pallet and preferences. For a couple of seconds, my sensory memory stretched back in time and I thought of crunchy, greasy fries, gooey orangeish cheese, and artery-clogging, processed meat. My mind asked, “Just this once? What would it hurt?”

My stomach said, “Ewww. That shit’s gross.” I veered off to the refrigerated shelves and grabbed a container of yogurt instead. (I might have become a yogurt snob, by the way. While it was okay and a better choice than chili-cheese laden fries, it wasn’t the higher quality Greek yogurt and fruit to which I have become accustomed.) Sub-par yogurt or whatever, my stomach felt better, I felt more satisfied and, mentally, I could reinforce myself for making a good, healthy, appropriate eating choice instead of giving into a bad-food-choice impulse.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I never eat a crispy fry, burger, or even a hot dog, but there are times and places when these are of better quality. A crowded airport restaurant probably isn’t that quality option.

1 Comment »