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Spent two hours selling junk food yesterday


Monday, March 03, 2014

I was attending one of my daughter's swim meets and all parents are recruited to help. My job was to sell concessions for two hours.
This must have been the first time ever since I went low-carb that I was surrounded by this much junk food: pretzels, nacho cheese sauce, barbecued pulled pork sandwiches, tortilla chips with nacho sauce, candy bars, donuts, bagels with cream cheese, sugar packets for coffee, instant cups of chicken-noodle soup. The "healthy choices" were granola bars (with just as much sugar as the candy bars), a few bananas and some mandarin oranges, some hard-boiled eggs and some cheese sticks.
I was not sure if any of that would be tempting to me at all but wanted to find out. It did not help that I had no time to eat breakfast that morning and my shift went from 11am to 1pm.
The donuts did not look interesting at all, I've never really liked pretzels or tortilla chips and the instant noodle soup was not ever my favorite. The candy bars did not tempt me because they were wrapped, if I had seen the chocolate it may have been different.
When the barbecued pork was running low I decided that I would try some without the bun. It smelled pretty good but I also knew it probably contained a fair amount of sugar from the barbecue sauce. After having a moderate size serving I did not get hungry for quite a while.
But later that afternoon I was ready for another meal, this time a healthy salad with some chicken.
The next morning I found that I was no longer in ketosis so the barbecue sauce must have had even more sugar than I realized.
Overall it was an interesting experience. Most people, except kids under 10 were clearly trying to avoid the sugar, but went for the bagels, chips and nachos and sandwiches and it seemed that they thought they were making healthier choices. Some even commented on how they were trying to stay with the healthier fare. Only 2 out of over 100 people chose low-carb items like string cheese and eggs.
It's important to add that most of the people there were experienced swim parents and could have easily packed all the needed food for the day before coming to the meet.
Probably more than half did exactly that. I suspect that I found the reason why a significant percentage of the swimmers, including some as young as 7, were obese.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post:
NEXTSTEPS 3/6/2014 9:39AM

    I cringe now every time I see this at schools & events. If my kids were still in elementary school I don't think I could take all the holiday and birthday celebrations, not to mention the shared snack obligation at kindergarten.

At least you had a few healthy choices to sell!

I'm actually considering making a protein bar concoction invented by a member of another team I'm in to offer as an alternative when I need to bake fundraisers and the like. I'm making a Paleo beanless chili for our chili cook-off at church on Sunday.

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EXOTEC 3/5/2014 12:25AM

    A nod to you for withstanding being that close to such junk for hours! ick.

I might've opted for the cheese and HB eggs, and I did use to like those ramen soups... although I always just drank the broth and left the noodles.
I wouldn't (and don't) bother with them anymore, but in your situation I might have.
I might have done as you did, and just scraped the innards out of the BBQ pork. I love it when I make it myself... but I don't load it up with a barrel of sugar sauce.
I used to like pretzels - but, strangely and for unknown reason(s), I've discovered that something about that malted flour really gets my GI tract grumpy.
Most of the things on your table there would have challenged me not to be queasy, rather than a temptation to indulge.

I think my biggest temptation would probably have been the dubious opportunity to discuss (or at least open the topic) of healthy nutrition with those moms. I probably would never be asked to work the table again though - I suspect I wouldn't sell very much at that rate! LOL

I had to smirk a bit at your remark about the "obese swimmers". They call those "floaters", or "bobbers", don't they?!?
...shame on me...



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JSTETSER 3/4/2014 5:40AM

    obese swimmers?
My son was on a swim team in the 1990s. Only 1 obese swimmer out of 50.
Times have changed!

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1CRAZYDOG 3/3/2014 9:18PM

    I couldn't do concessions either!

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MOTHERBEAR4 3/3/2014 8:21PM

    Great blog! as always.

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WOUBBIE 3/3/2014 7:20PM

    I work the band concession stand and we do actually have a BIT more edible stuff than that. Kolbassi and sauerkraut, hotdogs, burgers, "walking tacos" (bag of corn chips with meat sauce, lettuce, salsa, cheese, and sour cream dolloped in). Certainly nothing that really qualifies as "healthy", though; more along the lines of "tolerable". On the other hand, we do have a lot of the other stuff too, including an entire candy store setup! Yikes!

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DOVESEYES 3/3/2014 6:17PM

    An interesting day.

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CHEBBA 3/3/2014 3:31PM

    What an interesting experience - thank you for sharing it. The results of your observations were probably not much of a surprise, I suspect. But it rather works in with the blog I wrote last night - a blog in which you personally featured in my thoughts, albeit unmentioned in my 'Rantings'.

If you wade through my rant, you'll see that it includes a section about my discovery of the Leptin situation as well as an outburst about government responsibility to take food manufacturers to task. Whilst I'd spent the previous night with insomnia and prowled the internet for food topics to inspire me, I found myself totally absorbed in all manner of matters leptin, ending up with discovering a topic in SP last year (whilst I was MIA) in which you contributed some thoughts on pasture butter. Yesterday I began Dr Byron Richard's recommended format of meals, hours between, no snacking etc - and this very morning I had a low-carb protein breakfast with real butter on my wholegrain toast. The real butter was down to you after reading your comments last year!

I began tracking my food again on New Year's Day, after the abnormalities of Christmas, even though we had a very ordinary, non-Christmassy meal, just DB and me; no binges, ridiculous tins of biscuits, sweets and crisps (cookies, candy and potato chips!). As you know, it hasn't been easy and losing my dog would normally have had me trampling the gremlins who live in my fridge in order to get to anything and everything to eat. It hasn't happened this time and we're now into March, I'm still motivated and taking the keenest interest I've ever experienced in nutrition. WOW!

Your blog endorses what I'm discovering, although I don't want to become so 'into it' that DB feels I've lumbered him with it too. However, I'm definitely tweaking my foodstuffs and non-snacking, and your blog makes it that much easier to retain my momentum. "You are what you eat" is not only a programme over here, it's also extremely true.

Thank you again.

Jo emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SANDRALEET 3/3/2014 2:47PM

    My Son who had Diabetes Ate high protean and his liver made it go out of control It toke medication and adding good carbohydrates to get him on track A dangerous for your health diet for many people Hard on your liver kidneys Got hell from doctor and his dietician

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_RAMONA 3/3/2014 2:37PM

    This was really interesting, Birgit. I couldn't do the concession... the smell of that sort of food makes me nauseous.

My daughter plays soccer and we haul food everywhere because I have yet to come across a concession that sells anything I would consider to be real food, let alone healthy.

My Divine Miss O is 9 years old. I have been observing (with no little curiosity) her physical growth and development compared against that of her peers (she's been in school with the very same kids since grade 1, and she plays soccer and dances with the same girls since age 5).

There has been a dramatic change in the body composition of every one of the kids... especially this past year. Even though they are all equally active (and these kids are ACTIVE... like the swimmers), even though about half of them started out wiry and lithe (as did Miss O), even though the school has a 'healthy lunch' policy... with the very notable exception of Miss O, all these kids are progressing from a healthy body composition almost across the board, to one that whispers or even screams of future struggles with their weight. The kids that were always overweight have now moved from there onto 'obese'.

Parents of these same kids have commented on how STRONG my Miss O looks... yet nobody seems interested in why she is developing so differently than the others... apparently she is just 'lucky' (even though 4 years ago most of them had a very similar body composition to her).

Sad, isnt' it.



Comment edited on: 3/3/2014 3:46:19 PM

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