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"I'm sorry, I can't eat that."

Today someone asked me at work if I wanted to order lunch with them. I responded with, “No, sorry. I have put myself on restrictions.” When I turned away from them, I thought about what I had just said. Did I truly feel restricted in the way that I have chosen to eat?

“Dietary restrictions” is the language of a Registered Dietitian who has studied nutrition as a science. An RD will advise you to restrict certain items from your diet in response to an allergy, intolerance, or for some other medical-related reason. RDs are taught to utilize only nutritional science to educate a person on what they should eat to be healthier (lower health risk) and live longer.

Using the term for my own self, I could see how it felt negative and cold. “Restrictions” made me feel like I was in prison and being rationed. It sounded as if my hands were tied and I was unable to make a choice that I would want to make. After some personal introspection, I realized that “restricted” was not how I felt at all. In fact, I have plenty of choice in my day!

I am using my knowledge of dietetics and coupling it with my infatuation of food to improve my overall quality of life. I am making the informed decision to delay gratification and invest in my body. Instead of treating my body like a derby car, I am choosing to fuel my tank with premium gas and change the oil on schedule. I am choosing to manage my health risk instead of rolling the dice.

I’m not restricted when I eat properly portioned food that my body needs to be healthy… I’m being kind to myself; giving back to the body that has always done it’s best with what it has had. I’m paying my respects early, knowing that my body will thank me and work smarter, not harder, for me when I need it the most.

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