Wednesday, January 8, 2014

A Low Carbohydrate Diet

A Low Carbohydrate Diet

It all started on Halloween.

We get about 60-100 kids coming around and this year was no exception.  However, at the end of the night, we had 3 bags of Hershey’s Chocolate Bars left over.  Barbara attributed this to over shopping on my part, but the rule is if there isn’t anything left over, you didn’t buy or prepare enough.

I, being the thrifty one in the family, put the bags in the refrigerator in the garage, planning on using them next Halloween.  Barbara had other ideas.

She put bags in the refrigerator in the kitchen, where they presented a tempting vision every time I opened the door, or even thought about them.

Barbara was basically forcing me to eat them, and so we did.  

By the beginning of December they had miraculously disappeared, just in time for me to take my annual blood screening test ordered by my doctor.

We arrived at the doctor’s office.  We both had an appointment and went in together.

I sneaked a peak at the chart prior to seeing the doctor and saw what the doctor was going to be complaining about.

As expected, when the doctor came in, she admonished me over my Triglyceride level.

“Why is it so high?” she inquired.

“It’s Ina Garter’s fault,” I declared. “You know, the Barefoot Contessa. She and all the chefs on the Food Network are creating my high Triglyceride number.  All the recipes start with: ‘Get a stick of butter’. What could I do? We are cooking now for the first time in 46 years and this is what is required.”

“Hmm”, she said, “why don’t you use margarine?”

“Because it tastes like crap”, I declared.  “What’s the purpose of cooking unless it tastes good?”

“The doctor gave me the “Look”, much as Barbara gives me when she wants me to stop something.  Must be a female thing.

“Oh, and maybe because Barbara made me eat three bags of Hershey’s Chocolate Bars,” I said.

“Three Bags!” the doctor exclaimed, looking at Barbara for confirmation.

Barbara confirmed my statement (at least to my eating the 3 bags) with a nod of her head.

“She forced me,” I said, “I had hidden them in the refrigerator in the garage, but Barbara moved them to the kitchen in order to tempt me”.

Barbara rolled her eyes and gave me the “Look”.

“That will do it,” the doctor said.

“And possibly, but probably not, my eating pies might have contributed to the high number,” I added.

“Pies?” she inquired.

“Yes, I have been appointed a pie judge at the American Pie Council Bake off in  Orlando in April.  It is my judicial responsibility to eat as many pies a possible between now and then in order to get a baseline of pie tastes for judging purposes,” I said.

“Really,” she inquired, “how did that happen?”

I proceeded to tell her how I had talked my way into becoming a judge at the contest, and why, I, an amateur, was qualified to be a judge among the professionals who would be there.

“Interesting”, the doctor said, “but that doesn’t solve the problem”.

“Don’t worry”, I responded, “I will cut back on carbohydrates, like bread,and potatoes and the number will go down immediately.”

We then had a discussion about different pies I had tasted and particularly about Key Lime Pie, which the doctor said her husband was very good at baking.

“Ok”, she said, getting ready to leave, “we’ll test you again in May after the contest and see what the number is then”.

“Good plan”, I said.

As she was leaving us she turned and said, “You know you are killing me with this”.

“Killing you?” I responded, opening my eyes wide.

She left without further comment.

We left the office and surprisingly Barbara was a little upset.

“That’s it”, she declared. “You are cutting out pastries and chocolate until your Triglycerides go down”.

“Sure, sure”, I said, “I’ll cut down on bread”

“I mean it”. she said, looking very determined.

That night she asked me to make pasta.

For the next few weeks, we didn’t keep pastries in the house, except for an occasional Linzer Tart, which is Barbara’s favorite.

Last week we were forced to buy a pound of butter cookies to give to my grandson who was sleeping over.  We swore him to secrecy and by the next day the cookies were gone somehow.

I am forced to still eat pies on occasion,  particularly when we are out with friends.  They have come to rely on my judgement in these matters when we order dessert. The last time, I was coming home late and my friends called me on the phone and asked me to stop by to judge a pie they had just bought. They needed my expertise, so how could I refuse?

Unfortunately it was terrible, and they agreed with me.  They are taking it back to the store to complain.  I was happy to be of service.

Barbara and I went to the farmer’s market on Sunday.  I discovered dark chocolate covered cranberries there.  

Delicious and medicinal, how could this be bad?  Of course we bought them.

Barbara chided me on buying them and admonished me for eating them.  She confined herself to eating  pistachio nuts,  which we also bought.

Last night, while lying in bed, I brought in some chocolate covered cranberries and Barbara tasted them.

“Wow”, she said, “lets have some more”.

Now, how am I going to stick to my diet with a request like that?

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