If you know me well then you’ve heard me say these two things about my personal diet:
(1) I have the eating habits (or taste buds) of the average 5 year old
(2) I eat to live, I don’t live to eat
I am not a “foodie”. I am one of the pickiest eaters ever. I have always had a strange relationship with meat. I don’t particularly like vegetables and have a terrible sweet tooth. I really LOVE pancakes and pork sausage patties. I don’t like to cook and I don’t really experiment with new food or eat out very often because to me food is sustenance. I eat to live (I don’t live to eat) but my eating habits leave much to be desired for one who wants to live a long, healthy life. A few years ago I was a carryout/fast food queen. Technically my diet has improved, but in truth it’s more like not eating as unhealthy as before rather than eating healthier. I am totally knowledgeable of how nutrition affects health – but still I am a healthy eating work in progress.
As I drove to the eastern shore in Maryland to present at a conference in October 2013, I had a chicken plant encounter that drastically changed my eating habits – I no longer eat chicken. This past weekend I ate breakfast at an all-you-can-eat restaurant (as I have many times before when on vacation) but because I have been spending a lot of my time thinking about and researching food deserts, urban farming, public health, and social justice this meal was different. I was keenly aware of just how unhealthy the food was, that most of the patrons were of lower economic status, and many likely eat that way very often because of tradition and availability. This particular restaurant served fried food and pork at 9:00am that I had never seen at other locations. It ruined my day when I began to think about the potential numbers of people with diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure who were sitting near me during breakfast. I chose to eat there as a vacation cheat treat. I have the financial ability to shop at Wegman’s and Whole Foods. I can decide to eat at a vegan restaurant, Indian restaurant, or American diner on any given day. I have medical insurance and a primary care physician that I love. I can take a dance class or join a gym when I’m ready to begin a regular exercise regimen. Many people cannot!!
I will be incorporating my own form of detoxing for the next two weeks!
I’m not sure exactly what I’m going to do next as it relates to nutrition and social justice but the social worker in me is rising.
I appreciate you for reading this post and would love to hear your comments and suggestions.
Nicki Sanders, The Packaged For Success Coach, is an experienced trainer, group facilitator, and program manager. She has packaged her Masters of Social Work degree and over 15 years of work experience into Packaged For Success, a training and professional development company. Packaged For Success provides career coaching to college students, entry-level job hunters, and experienced employees seeking a promotion. Packaged For Success also offers communication and productivity improvement training for employees and supervisors and provides consultation on building sustainable, impactful, socially responsible community programs.
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