Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Damn Potato Chips

I was at the store the other day and saw something that made my heart break.

There was a woman. She was about 5'9" and maybe 350lbs. This isn't what made me sad though, it's what I saw next. 

This woman pushed her cart along and at the end cap of the isle she just had walked by, there were a bunch of potato chips on sale. She went from walking resolutely, to an immediate stop. So immediate it made me pay attention to her. It made me wonder what was wrong.

Then with a big inhale, her hands went to her hips. There was an even bigger exhalation as she looked up to the ceiling. The woman's head dropped and her shoulders slouched dramatically. Then she turned to face the wall of chips. 

This woman reached out her hand with a physical emotion of disgust, and then literally threw a bag of chips into her cart. In anger, she walked away.

Standing there, I wanted to cry. 
I know that feeling. I know that surrender. 
I know that fading resolution.

Just a few days later I had my own experience...

There's something wrong about studying a nutrition book and simultaneous feeling a desire to have a danish and a soda. This is what I face though. 

I am an addict. In recovery for sure, but an addict nonetheless. 

In my college days of yesteryear, I was never studying without 32oz of some sort of beverage. If I had a pastry of some kind as well, then I was really on a roll. To me, this action meant I was hunkering down and studying hard.

How many years has it been since then? Oodles! Here I am, after all that time and I still fight these cravings. Now the difference is that I actually care about what I eat and drink. I am more present with my food choices.

Now I study to continue education and improve not just my health, but the health of others. But no sooner did I cracked open my book then did I want a stupid breaded and cream filled delight. Not just one either. It is literally on the level that I should probably have an addiction recovery sponsor to call - absolutely no joke.

I even just read, not many pages ago, that "Americans still drink nearly twice as many carbonated soft drinks per year as either water or milk." (Wardlaw, 6)

The biggest thing I have learned so far is that after all this time and  effort, I am still retraining my brain to a new appetite. My appetites are clearly a textbook "psychological drive to eat" and not an actual physical hunger. (Wardlaw, 7)

As I inhale and exhale, suddenly I wonder if I am slouching. But I am not. I have a choice. I always have and I always will. I do not have to relent to saturated fat, carbonation, and cream filling. 

In fact, I'm shutting down this computer and going for a jog with my little eleven month old buddy, who is currently playing peek-a-boo with the dogs.

Wardlaw, G.M. et al (2013). Contemporary Nutrition A Functional Approach. Third Edition. 6-7.

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