Well, the food "experts" issued another warning this week -- we Americans consume vastly more salt than we should. Last week sugar was the demon, and in the last few months we've been warned about e. coli in spinach and packaged lettuce (again), about villainous soup cans and plastic containers conspiring to kill us, fresh eggs and chicken ready to wipe out entire families, farmed fish (bad), ocean fish (badder), shellfish (baddest), alcohol (good/bad/good/bad), and white bread and all prepared food (THE WORST THINGS ON EARTH!).
Their message is clear -- eat anything and you die.
I've got news for all these experts and for the news organizations that lead with their ridiculous pronouncements: Life causes death. Period. It's the one constant of all life on earth, except for maybe bristlecone pine and redwood trees.
I'm SO tired of hearing this alarmist advice which is immediately challenged by food manufacturers (vested interests) and other "food experts," and often reversed in the weeks following the breaking news. I've fought my own battles with food and I'm no longer listening to "the experts."
I wrote here about my lifelong experiences with dieting, and I'm here to tell you that it only gets worse the older one becomes (if, of course, one survives all the nutritional pitfalls out there).
In 2003 I lost (mumble mumble) pounds and (harrumph!) dress sizes -- until my body went into absolute starvation mode and refused to accommodate any continuing efforts. It may have been the longest "dieting plateau" on record, and I'll stick to my story that I stuck to my diet and exercise program over the next nine years with NO appreciable results. Well, except that I gained back 20 of those mumble mumble pounds...the traitors.
I redoubled my efforts in January, tracked every single input calorie of food and every single output calorie of exercise with this dandy little free program, scavenged my Wendi Friesen hypnosis CD's from the depths of my closet and VIOLA! I've lost ten pounds. Hips, hips, see ya, hooray!
I guess my metabolism -- the body's conductor of the weight maintenance symphony -- decided nine years was long enough to be on strike. Seriously -- I'm doing NOTHING different than what I've done for the past nine years, so I'm befuddled at this recent success. According to those same infamous "experts," roller coaster dieting can cause this kind of reaction and God knows I've been riding that roller coaster since I was a child. Thanks, Mom, for those delicious pies, sugar sandwiches and your pork chops with country gravy. Thanks, Dad, for your Lithuanian/Polish genes that made these thighs giant silos, eager to store every stray calorie.
The bad news is -- at my mumble mumble years, losing even one pound results in the Catastrophic Aging Syndrome where one pound lost equals one year added to one's face. Alert the media -- this is my own new algorithm, affirmed with every depressing glance into my mirror: ten pounds exactly equal ten extra years tacked onto my already "mature" face. Where before I had minimal and charming laugh lines, I now have ruffles of excess skin, and where I had actual wrinkles, I have chasms that rival the You-Know-What Canyon. Dammit! As this continues, I'm going to be known as the Anti-Olay Woman of the universe. Those VERY expensive anti-wrinkle creams are not meant for someone my mumble mumble age -- they're meant for chickies approaching 30 who sport a tiny flaw on their perfect porcelain skin.
What we need (are you listening, cosmetic manufacturers?) is thick, creamy spackle...true skin stucco, caulk or joint compound. Just lather it on with a putty knife, cover with makeup and there ya go -- nearly human again. It could be a whole new outcall service, similar to those makeup and hair artists for the richy rich. I mean, we already have mani-pedis -- why not spackies?
Or, for extreme serial dieters, maybe we could have little "eyes" inserted, like sexy piercings, into the skin at our temples, then insert hooks on the ends of elastic bands and pull the whole facial skin upwards and clip with a diamond-studded hair ornament. No one would ever know. (I suspect some of those aging movie stars do exactly this -- why, oh why, isn't this technology available to us ordinary wrinkly wimmin?)
I knew when I turned 50 that any further dieting would result in a choice between my fanny and face -- I just didn't know that the choice would be so devastating. I'm way beyond the age where anyone is checking out my fanny but, no matter how high I hold my head and tilt it just right, my face is out there for all to see.
OK -- no more whining. I'm happy that the weight-loss factory is again working under full steam. Maybe there are shorts in my future this summer ....(hahahahahahaha...uncontrollable giggles).... and maybe next year I'll apply to The Bachelor -- with a brown bag over my head. In the meantime, I intend to add a little salt to canned soup, eat fresh spinach, and even buy an occasional loaf of sourdough bread. Not being a redwood tree (well, except for the thighs) I have to die of something.
Also...my favorite ZITE program brought me a link to this blog, which I'm sure many of you will find interesting -- I surely did. It chronicles a man who has vowed to perform 366 acts of random kindness throughout this entire year -- pretty impressive so far.