The clean plate club


There are many ways to measure success. But chief among them is to know that we are tops on a list where it is good to be tops, and the opposite standard applies near the bottom.

This past week, we Hoosiers moved in the opposite direction on both measures. We ballooned on lists that measure our obesity per capita compared to fellow states. And, we tumbled on lists that quantify personal activity in contrast to citizens in other locales. It seems clear that the two are related, but some would rather not consider the connection. In my own fight against age and a slowing metabolism, it pains me to admit that it is the dressing on my salad that expands my waistline and not the salad itself. But the dressing is so very tasty. It can’t be hiding fat and calories behind its silky goodness. And, water is a great thirst quencher, but there is something about that curvy bottle and red label that makes one need an afternoon soda – or two, or three.

Yet self-deception alone doesn’t account for our burgeoning selves. We routinely drive around the lot looking for the closest space. How can walking be better than driving? And, the escalator is just plain fun to ride. At the day’s end, we relax with television instead of a long walk. And too often, restaurants measure by the pounds served and not the quality of provision. A quick survey of local dining establishments shows numerous salads exceeding the allowable healthy dietary intake for an adult, in one portion. The super-sized burgers, fries and other dietary staples can easily make a single meal surpass by many times the 24 hour maximums allowed for a healthy existence.

Is being a member of the Clean Plate Club killing us? Let’s have dinner and discuss.

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