Archive for August, 2012

Minor Choices…Major Differences (In Waistline)

August 25, 2012

 Andrew Siegel, M.D.  Blog # 72


Many of us are literally bombarded with food exposure at work where opportunity and temptation can undermine healthy eating patterns.  For example, in my office we have pharmaceutical and device representatives who bring lunch in for our staff at least a few times weekly. It’s really a very nice perk, but it can be too much of a good thing.  Although some of the lunches are healthy, many are not—and it takes a bit of wisdom to avoid poor choices and over-consumption, both of which can leave one feeling acutely bloated, with an expanding waistline and a ticket to poor future health and chronic disease. I have found that minor, smart  and prudent choices applied diligently can keep the waistline stable and maintain health, wellness and vitality.

For example, a “rep” brought in Cassie’s wood-burning pizza and a big tray of chicken Caesar salad for yesterday’s office lunch.  The following is a deconstruction of my decision process and the choices made—choices that occur in reflex, subconscious, automatic fashion because they have become ingrained habits that help me swiftly navigate the complex world of eating.

Decision #1: I will eat a maximum of two slices pizza; one serving of salad—(portion control; no need to be a pig and down three or four pieces; no desire to feel stuffed, bloated and sluggish all afternoon.)

Decision #2: Pizza with the veggies on top, not the pepperoni—(I love veggies and never eat fat-oozing, coronary-clogging, mystery meat products: what’s in there anyway?)

Decision #3: Avoid the croutons in the salad—(They are tasteless, salty, white bread remnants that are just soggy refined carbs.)

Decision #4: Drizzle just a touch of salad dressing on—(No need for ruining a healthy salad with a big glob of fattening creamy Caesar dressing.)

Decision #5: Avoid the soda and the diet soda and instead grab a large glass of spring water—(Who needs “naked” calories, a load of high fructose corn syrup and artificial colors or calorie-free sugar substitutes?)

Bottom line: There is a great deal of leverage to be had by minor, consistently applied sensible eating choices. 

Andrew Siegel, M.D.

Author of Promiscuous Eating: Understanding and Ending Our Self-Destructive Relationship with Food

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