My goodness, eating has gotten so complicated!
It seems like a lot of time is spent researching what to eat and even more time is wasted talking about it! I was with a group of women the other day for a dinner meeting. I pitied the server whose job it was to wait on us.
I used to think I was the server’s nightmare because I wanted information about how something is prepared so I could make a good guess about how many Weight Watchers points it was going to cost me.
ME: “Is it brushed with butter before it’s served? Are the vegetables steamed or fried? I see it says no substitutes on the menu, but could I substitute the salad for the bread basket?”
I feel like wait staff love me now! I’m so uncomplicated. I may ask to have something left off or served on the side, but I’m done with the substitutions and interrogation of the waiter about the menu items.
Meanwhile it seems like I can’t dine with a group of people, any group, anywhere, where the ordering process doesn’t turn into some complicated ordeal because of all the special diets people are following these days.
Cripes, even agreeing on a restaurant takes major negotiations! Once we agree on the restaurant, the ordering of our meals is not without a lot of fuss. Much of it is wholly unnecessary!
- “I’m on a gluten-free diet. Is this chicken gluten-free?”
- “Im vegan. Are you able to serve me food that has no animal products or byproducts whatsoever?”
- “I can only eat organic vegetables. Are your vegetables organic? Are they grown locally? Do you use iceberg lettuce in your wedge salad? Can you make mine with arugula?”
- “I’m lactose intolerant. Is there milk in the sauce?”
- “I’m doing low-carb. Can I have my cheeseburger between 2 lettuce leaves – no bun?”
- “Do you use artificial ingredients? What about chemical additives? I can’t eat any artificial coloring or preservatives.”
- Gluten give me the shakes, explosive diarrhea, and a migraine. I just cannot tolerate it at all. Do you have a gluten-free menu?
Okay, don’t think I’m insensitive. I know that dietary restrictions are necessary for a lot of people. Some people have allergies or are extremely sensitive to certain foods or food groups.
I get it and I appreciate that it’s important for people to be vigilant to avoid whatever substances to which they may have adverse reaction.
They need to take care to make sure their needs are met. It’s the people whose “food sensitivities” seem to be ever-changing based on something getting passed around on the Internet.
One week they’re all about their “wheat belly” and “ancient grains,” the next week they got to steer clear of food dyes that oddly never were a problem until they read “the shocking truth about food coloring” on Facebook.
I’m amused by the vegan who “cheats with meat” sometimes. There is the low-carber who slugs Mudslides like they’re going out of style. There’s the woman who apparently cannot process gluten until she’s had a few glasses of wine, then she seems to do just fine. That’s when I get irritated.
I’d like to point out:
- There is no gluten in chickens and there never was. I think if you had celiac, and didn’t go gluten-free to jump on the bandwagon, you would know that!*
- Vegans don’t cheat. A vegan would never, ever want to cheat by eating anything that contains any sort of animal product! There is no such thing as a “cheating vegan” just like you can’t be “a little bit pregnant.” It’s all or nothing. Admit it; you’re no vegan. You’re just a “no-animal-eating-when-it-suits-me!”
- Really? Ms. Low-carb? Did you know your mudslides have 77 grams of carbs? Yes! Each one and 48 of those carbs happen to come from sugar!
- Hello another one of my gluten-free friends (whose aversion to gluten stems only from the belief that avoiding gluten will make her skinny) I don’t think a few glasses of wine helps people with gluten sensitivity magically become able to digest gluten without suffering all of the negative effects.
- And finally, people who are afraid that (fill in the blank) will kill you – if it’s not (chemicals, artificial coloring, hotdogs, bacon, etc.) that ends your life, something else will! We’re all going to die sooner or later.
It’s not just people making eating complicated when it doesn’t have to be, it’s the judgment and the sense of superiority some attach to their way of eating. Since when has your food choices been a sign of moral character – either good or bad?
I don’t judge people by their food choices, ever!
The one who eats “clean” is no better than the fast foodie. My “all organic” buddy can sit there looking superior while I go for the cheaper, non organic produce. I don’t care what you or anybody eats and I’m tired of the endless blabbing about the special properties of the food you eat or how my hotdog is going to send me to an early grave!
I am hopeful that we will one day soon return to eating what tastes good free from all the phony sensitivities, moralizing and pontificating!
* Gluten is a substance that’s found in some grains. The meat from animals, including poultry, does not contain gluten, however processed meat is a different story because of what may be added to the meat during processing. If you have celiac you’ll want to have all the information to ensure you’re making a safe choice when ordering.