How do we survive in the food abundant world?
Today in United States, two out of three people are overweight. On day I sat down at the mall watching shoppers pass by. 7 out of 10 people were either overweight or obese. However, we are so used to seeing bigger people that we forget they are carrying excess weight. Once a year, I go across the continent from Charlotte, NC to Burma, a country in South East Asia by crossing either trans-Pacific or trans-Atlantic. As I cross, I end up in multiple airports in different regions, I see the significant difference in the size of the people. The people from America are bigger despite the different ethnicity. So we must be doing something to make us bigger, it cannot be all genetics. Let’s evaluate why are we different.Abundance of Food
How do we survive in the food abundant world? Look at our homes and offices. We are surrounded by food: in the fridge, on the counter, in the kitchen, everywhere. We lose sight on how much we are eating, most of the time, just munching on something mindlessly. When under stress, we go open the fridge. When we get bored, we keep our mouth busy. Due to the huge market competition, restaurants and fast food places offer you more. Super-size drinks, meal deals, buffets, and an abundance of condiments readily available. But think. When we fill up the gas in our car, we do not overfill it. But we tend to overfill ourselves. Have we forgotten why we eat? We want to make a good use of the abundance of the food freely available. Let’s see how we can manage to change our abundant surroundings. As in a medical clinic, we do get plenty of food, sweets and meals. When I go to hospital, we have complimentary food and drinks for the physicians in doctor lounge. It is nice that we have convenience of having the food around so we do not work with empty stomachs in the busy schedule. What do we do among all these delicious temptations with humongous hungry stomach? 99% of the time I am hungry when I walk into the doctor lounge or the break room in the clinic. I grab a bottle of water (just plain water). Then I look for fruits and nuts. After that, I choose what I want to eat to fill my stomach. Remember smaller bites, with some pauses in between and it is OK not to finish a cookie in one go! I instructed all the employees in my practice to eat only at the break room or lunch room. Eating at your desk, keeping a drink (other than water) at your desk not only allows you to eat constantly but also reduces your desirable physical activity. If you want it, you have to get up and go to lunch room. This adds some extra non-exercise physical activity to their day and small break from staring into the computer screen! While we are taking extra measures not to waste the food, we have to remember, it is more dangerous to junk into our stomach rather junk in the garbage. At work, when you organize it into the discipline, everybody follows it because we all are in same boat. When you do it altogether it is more success. It is very OK to talk it out to your colleagues that you are watching your weight.