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Thursday, December 22, 2011

Who is the Surgeon General anyway?

I read a report from the Surgeon General that says to help achieve and maintain a healthy lifestyle, Americans of all ages should reduce the consumption of sodas and juices with added sugars; eat more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins; drink more water and choose low-fat or non-fat dairy products; limit television time to no more than 2 hours per day; and be more physically active.  Does the Surgeon General even have a name?  I may want to drop him/her a letter if the report helps my family become healthier, but who do I address it to?  (Dear Mr./Mrs. Suregon General Sir/Ma'am). 
Anyway...based on this report, I decide that my entire family is going to follow this vision. What better place to start then at my local grocery store? 
Let the shopping begin...
I had not eaten that morning and rushed out hungry. BIG MISTAKE!  When I walked through the sliding doors the aromas from the bakery hit me like a foul ball while not looking. I could smell cookies, cupcakes, baklava, croissants, sourdough, you name it..they were baking it.  I strolled by and they were giving out free samples of cookies. The clerk offered and I accepted!  The cookies were so good (White Chocolate Macadamia), I asked her to box up a dozen fresh baked treats for me and the clan.  This leads me to my second mistake.
I brought the kids with me. GIGANTIC MISTAKE! Since the kids were with me, they could help me get all the items on my list.  COLOSSAL MISTAKE!  
My list was simple (please refer to the actual list below...)
  • Reduced Fat milk (just like the Surgeon General said)
  • Eggs
  • Bananas
  • Apples
  • Oranges
  • Pears (for diversity)
  • Cherries (By the Way-These little things are SO expensive!)
  • Whole Grain Bread
  • Lean turkey (from the deli)
  • Asparagus
  • Brocoli
  • Green Beans
  • Light Popcorn
A small list and if done correctly, I could get in the 20 items or less line and be out of the store in no time! As I strolled the aisles, with kids in tow.  Every two minutes I heard the rationale from my kids. "Look Mom!  Buy One, Get One!" Can we get these?  I thought Blueberry Muffins, Pop Tarts, Fruit Roll Ups, etc... couldn't be that bad.  "Go ahead, grab two packs!"  Down every single aisle there was a BOGO offer and they rationalized with me.  Every few minutes I even heard "AND its good for us".  As my twelve year old steered the cart to the check out line, I looked into the cart and it was filled to the brim with 900 million calories!
The shock of a full cart, the words of the Mr./Mrs. Surgeon General Sir/Ma'am, no vegetables or fruits in sight and a pushy check-out clerk caused me to turn red (if you knew me, you would see how this is possible) and sharply give my children the parent stare. 
I began to only take the healthy choices out of the cart and place them on the belt.  My children began to question this behavior. The little one even had a minor temper tantrum as she held onto a large bag of Cheetos Puffs. I heard them whispering to each other "I can't believe she won't let us have the Strawberry Pop-Tarts!"  I gave a cut of my eyes, swiped my card, abandoned the half full cart, bid the clerk adieu and vowed to NEVER take the kids shopping again. 
I am convinced, the Surgeon General must be a person with no kids and must send someone else to do the grocery shopping.



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