There I am at a party looking at the food. I’m looking for guests I know and who looks fun and interesting.
Before I can finish scanning the room. The host says, “Meet my friend, LaDiva, she’s a dietitian. LaDiva, don’t hate me because of the food. I know so much of it is bad. But it’s a party.”
Great way to meet someone new. Now, the new person will begin to spew all their guilt about their diet to me. “I don’t eat THAT much meat. I mean, why does bad food taste so good?”
Really? Do you think I care? Did you notice I had a glass of red wine in my hand?
So here are my mental replies:
- “Hmm, interesting. You don’t eat that bad-ly. You are using the word, bad, as an adverb. You need to add an -ly. Strunk and White have an app.”
- “Hmm, interesting. What else do you think about your food?”
“Well, it is just hard to make healthy stuff.”
“Hmm, interesting. Hard to make.” I nod my head.
“Do you have a credit card?”
“Great. The rest conversation is going to cost you $150 for an hour. I have my Paypal swiper with me.”
- “You eat really bad? Actually you eat BADLY, and have you ever painted a room or anything?”
“Well, this conversation is about as interesting to me as watching that paint dry. I am now going to put that knitting needle through my eye to divert the pain of this verbal interchange.”
- “Okay, I’m going to cut to the chase. You need to ask yourself, what do you want your food to do for you? Answer that and the rest is easy. Excuse me. Those folks look like they are having fun. I’m going to join them.”
That’s my bottom line. What is it you want your food to do? Here’s an example:
- I’m a person with high cholesterol. I have a couple of teen age kids, I want to get through college and off into their own lives. I know what I eat causes my problem. I pay my own insurance and if I need more medication, my premiums will go up. I need my food to lower my cholesterol and make sure I go to my kids weddings.
If this person is chowing down on the animal foods, saturated fat and little fiber, their food is NOT doing what they want it to do. Their diet is actually supporting their next stroke and decreasing the number of meals the caterer plans for the graduation parties.
- I’m a person wiling to risk the damage to my liver by having a martini. I drink my martini after 5:30pm. The point of the martini is to break the work day from the evening.
This person’s food does exactly what they want it to do. And if they have an olive, they even get fiber. If they have more than one martini, it may not do what they want it to do because, depending on their alcohol tolerance, they make get to tipsy and not make dinner or go to bed at a reasonable hour. If they have 3 or 4, they may have a hangover that REALLY ruins their next day and any relationships they have with people who don’t appreciate their 3 am bad joke phone calls and texting about how their bosses really don’t understand them.
The idea is not rocket science. It does take looking at yourself, your goals and owning what you do versus what you want. I come in when you want to get these two – goals and daily life – to work together. That’s where my expertise gives you strategies to make your healthy life a reality.
So looking at your life and health goals, that’s the question to ask. And when we meet at a party, tell me a great joke and the most fun thing you have ever done. Leave the food guilt in the car. It will wait for you.