I had occasion to have a free video call with a Registurd Dietitian today. I spell it that way not out of any disrespect but because it’s hilarious and she wants me to eat… wait for it… more vegetables! Thus, fiber and poop aka turd. No s#it! I want to want to eat more vegetables, and both potato chips and French fries count, as they come from the powerful potato. Hey, if it’s enough to keep Matt Damon alive on Mars, FFS (French Fries Sake), it’s good enough for a dude. Plus, it’s a cultural thing. Don’t tell me I can’t have my ancestors’ primary staple, even though the potato is from Peru. Anyway, I need to process some of this stuff, and no better place than blog land.
As I stated in my recent post, Some Surprising Ways Weight Supports Sports, sometimes it’s useful to carry excess weight. But most of the time it’s an impediment. Like climbing hills on a bicycle. So I continue to search for small improvements that over time hopefully add up to something more. Marginal gains, it’s called,.even if weight loss is just one of the benefits. For example, I’ve been eating a salad every day. That’s probably nothing for many people, but it is a big deal for me (even if it’s a small salad; I’ll leave the Big Salads to Seinfeld). It’s progress.
Anyway, I shouldn’t make light of dietitians. They study the confusing world of food science and nutrition and try to make it palatable to we plebeians. However, one does wonder how reliable they are, given that over 73% of Americans are overweight or obese despite years if their advice. One can’t blame them though, because they aren’t responsible for whatever groceries you throw down your own neck. Ultimately, that’s up to each of us. With all the food advertising, food science making processed crap (the fourth scatological reference, sorry!), and our insatiable appetites for said unhealthy fare, I bet they’re confused about what’s good or bad, too.
For example, her handout said two alcoholic drinks per day are ok for men. That advice recently changed down to one. She suggested that corn tortillas and whole wheat bread would be ok for me, given that she believes in the 80/20 rule. That means we should strive to eat healthfully (aka “clean”) 80% of the time, and the remaining 20% it’s ok to live a little, indulge, etc. So when it comes to advice like “substitute potato chips with baby carrots for hummus,” it’s pretty hard to do the math there, since inspire off flours years ago. I don’t claim to be eating 100% healthy, but adding in processed foods like tacos and sandwiches sure seems like a step backwards from whole grains.
A big thing these days is the “anti-inflammatory” diet, sorry, eating plan. When questioned about whether I actually have inflammation in my body, she just said the doctor said I do. Well, another doctor said my lab results show I don’t have any. Yet, I have a lingering injury, which I’m sure is inflamed. So which doctor (a witch doctor?) should I believe? And do I buy what she’s selling over a medical physician? Well, they get very minimal nutritional training. Sure, the anti-inflammatory thing makes sense, it’s just like the obvious,which is basically the healthy Mediterranean diet: eat lots of fresh produce, lean proteins, good fats, etc. Duh! Still, it’s far from easy.
Her other advice wasn’t bad, nor was it earth-shattering. It’s ok for me to eat carbs, because I exercise a lot. (I’m a carbon-based life form and fruit and vegetables are carbohydrates, too.) Try to have protein at every meal. Don’t eat too late. Do measure portion sizes. Don’t stress out about the calorie counts. Do drink more water. And so on. All easier said than done. If it were easy, many of us fat athletes would already be doing it. Or more often we have tried it or are still often making healthy choices but they just aren’t working. Most of us are not ever going to look like skinny runway fashion models, and that’s fine; most of them look very unhappy and/or unhealthy.
So I’ll keep on doing what I can in the good ol’ newtrution department. Maybe one day I’ll wake up looking like 20th century Hollywood heartthrob Bert Reynolds in his prime. But even that former Adonis had his career go down the toilet eventually. In his latter years he went on the recurring SNL sketch “Jeopardy” and changed his name to Turd Ferguson. (OK, it was Norm MacDonald.) Why? “Because Turd Ferguson is a funny name,” Norm as Burt as Turd said. Just like how nutrition is a funny business, and I don’t think anyone really knows what works to reduce overweight.
That reminds me, I’ve got to go do my business, because that salad went right through me. I threw them groceries down my neck like it was an inhalation, and now it’s turned out to be defecation. Just kidding, sorry, it seemed like a fun rhyme to go out on. Now as Pink Floyd exhorted the children, “Eat your meat, or you don’t get any pudding!” And maybe throw in some fruit and vegetables and whole grains while you’re at it. Alright, I’m done. You could even say I’m pooped.