A few weeks back, we were talking in weight maintenance class about how our perspectives on weight loss have changed since starting the program. In the early days, many of us were looking for quick fixes. The fact that the UAMS program is advertised as being just 16 weeks was a selling point to many. Coming to the end of a 16 week weight loss class or a 12 week maintenance class, one might say “I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.” As it turns out, there’s not really an “end of the tunnel” in terms of healthy living and weight maintenance.
We went around the room, spontaneously talking about how we felt coming to the end of class. Not really prompted by the teacher, we just felt our way through the group conversation. When it was my turn to speak, I said something like, “For me, the light isn’t at the end of the tunnel, but it’s within the tunnel, walking beside me. The light is Kristen, my dietitian.” Kristen is there with me helping me see things I couldn’t otherwise see, learn things I wouldn’t otherwise know, and always doing so with a positivity that is unmatched. I’m so fortunate to have Kristen along on my journey.
In recovery from my abdominoplasty, the surgeon instructed me to eat more protein. I already eat a diet very high in protein — Greek yogurt morning and night, a lot of lean fish and chicken, and peanut butter several times a day as not only a source of “good fat,” but also additional protein. I emailed Kristen asking for guidance. She gave me some wonderful advice:
How do you feel about non-fat cottage cheese? One cup is around 125 calories and has about 25 g. of protein. And maybe for a few suggestions to “shake things up” you might try some Edamame, quinoa, flax seeds, or someprotein powder. Just a few suggestions for when you get bored.
I hope all goes well at your checkup today! I’m ready to see you in person.
Kristen is the light along the way as I traverse this tunnel. If I get frustrated, she’s always open to discussing the situation. If I am excited about something, she always takes time to listen and congratulate me. She’s so much more than just a person full of nutrition facts. She’s like my nutrition therapist.
Everyone who’s a part of the UAMS program has access to the services of a registered dietitian like Kristen. For those of you who aren’t part of the UAMS program, who do you have helping you make decisions and decode the ingredient lists of tricky foods? If I’m in Wal-Mart, I’ll snap a shot of label and email Kristen. Sometimes, she even gets back to me before I leave the store!
Who’s your light?