Picky Eating Is a Good Thing

Most of us have a lot of events to attend during the year. Even someone like me, who doesn't work outside the home, is invited to weddings, showers, meetings, meals with friends and more.

Most of us have a lot of events to attend during the year. Even someone like me, who doesn't work outside the home, is invited to weddings, showers, meetings, meals with friends and more.

I've been to my share of events where food was a part of the function. Most recently, I attended a committee meeting for a Wellness Walk in our city. When I got to the meeting location, there were boxed lunches sitting on a table. The choices were sandwiches with luncheon meat, chips, and cookies or a salad. I chose the salad, thinking that would be healthier than the sandwiches, but was quickly sorry I did.

I opened up the salad box and there was iceberg lettuce with lots of ham, turkey, bacon, boiled egg, and onions on top of the lettuce. I am a bit picky, so I knew I wasn't going to eat much of that salad. I don't eat lunch meat at all, so that was out. I don't eat pork, so the bacon was out. That left the egg, the onions, and the iceberg lettuce. Using my fork, I started pushing aside the stuff I didn't want to eat. The bacon was all throughout the whole salad so I had a hard time! I felt someone looking at me.

The gentleman sitting next to me said, "I see you are trying to get to the healthier things." I laughed and explained that I was a picky eater. He then said, "I wonder if that has served you well during these years of maintenance." I agreed that it most likely had.

I've always been a picky eater. When I was young, I probably drove my mom crazy with the phrase, "I don't like that." As I got older, I was still picky. I didn't like most vegetables, but loved french fries! I liked lots of salad dressing, mayonnaise, and sugar with my foods. I loved all desserts but not many healthy main dishes. So I was picky in a bad way. Once I began to change my lifestyle, I had to learn to like those foods that I thought I didn't like, and stop eating so much of the foods I thought I loved.

It was hard to reverse the pattern. I didn't really want to make fruit salad without adding 1/2 cup of sugar. But over time, I learned that the taste of fruit was good just by itself! I weaned myself off drenching my salad in high fat dressings and switched to vinegars or nothing. I stopped eating fried food and figured out ways to make baked and grilled foods tasty and not dry.

I reversed my picky tendencies from unhealthy to healthy and I'm so glad I did. Now I'm picky about wasting my calories on "treats." If it's not really good, I pass completely. I'm picky about food at events and functions and if I don't want to eat it I don't, or just push it around on my plate. I've found that very few people pay attention to what the people around them eat - thank goodness! I'd encourage you to be picky about your food in a healthy way!

4 Steps to Shedding Your Pandemic Pounds

Forgive yourself, and start walking toward a healthier you.

For those of you who have put on the Pandemic Pounds or added several new COVID Curves, you are not alone. Alarmingly, the American Psychological Association has recently published that almost half of all adults in their survey now have a larger physique. In fact, 42% of people reported gaining roughly 15 pounds (the average published was surprisingly 29 pounds but that included outliers) over the past year. Interestingly, 20% of adults in this survey lost about 12 pounds (I am surely not in this group). Clearly, there is a relationship between stress and weight change. In addition, one in four adults disclosed an increase in alcohol consumption, and 67% of participants distressingly revealed that they have new sleeping patterns.

This past year has brought about what has been called the 'new normal.' Social isolation and inactivity due to quarantining and remote working have sadly contributed to the decline in many people's mental and physical health, as demonstrated by the widespread changes in people's weight, alcohol consumption, and sleeping patterns. Gym closures, frequent ordering of unhealthy takeout, and increased time at home cooking and devouring comfort foods have had a perceptible impact. In addition, many people have delayed routine medical care and screening tests over fear of contracting Covid-19 during these visits. Unfortunately, the 'new normal' has now placed too many people at risk for serious health consequences, including heart attacks and strokes.

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