a hard place the golden arches. That’s where I was stuck this past weekend.
It started Friday morning, before setting off on our road trip to Palo Alto. Kyle and I offered to pick up breakfast for our driving companion, but he didn’t get the text in time. As a result, we were happily fed and Starbuck’s-ed before the drive began, while our friend was in need of breakfast. He requested that we hit up the McDonald’s drive-thru before getting on the freeway. Hm. This is where my inner battle began.
Do I voice my anti-fast-food opinion and refuse to go to the golden arches? Or do I shut my mouth and let him make his decision without my own personal beliefs ruining his breakfast?
Let’s set aside the fact that complying with his request would mean a six+ hour car ride with nausea inducing smells (I literally get queasy when I smell fast food).
Ok. Here’s the thing. McDonald’s represents everything my blog is against. And although I consider myself open minded and accepting of others’ choices, I also feel I have somewhat of a responsibility in terms of educating others about nutrition. I’m a cardiac nurse after all. If this person were my friend, I would have no issue speaking my mind (saying hell no to 7 am Egg McMuffins). But, he is Kyle’s classmate, so I don’t feel like I am close enough with him to be quite as opinionated. It’s a fine line. I certainly don’t want to be that obnoxious person talking sh!t about others’ food choices, but at the same time, if this is something I’m passionate about (which I am!), then isn’t it my job to speak out about the truth? I guess ultimately it’s all about how one goes about doing this. Tact is an art form. And being informative without being condescending is also a skill. I’d like to think I’m pretty good at this.
In the end, though, Kyle saved the day and spoke up before I had a chance to make up my mind. We ended up going to a bagel place.
While on the road, we got to talking about food and health care and the role of nutrition in disease prevention. It was amazing to me how we were all on the same page about these issues (he’d even seen Super Size Me and read Fast Food Nation), and yet, for him McDonald’s was still a food option. I sound judgmental, I know. But I’m passionate about this subject. It’s hard to see people with hypertension, heart disease and diabetes in the hospital day after day and not want to share the facts about the causes. So sue me. Others may think this is judgmental (and not my place), but I’m just being honest. If I’m afraid to raise my voice, then who is going to do it?
Anyway, for those wondering, our driving buddy was very receptive to what I had to say, and although I held back considerably, I still made sure he knew the reason I was anti-McD’s. If nothing else, maybe he will think twice next time he opts for the drive-thru window. Or maybe not. It’s his choice either way, and now I can rest easy knowing it’s an informed decision, having shared my knowledge on the matter with him in a kind and respectful way.
What are your thoughts? One the one hand, it takes balls to speak out to friends and family about such personal lifestyle choices, like diet (since it can be seen as obnoxious). But on the other hand, it’s each person’s right to make his/her own decision about what to eat.
I guess for me, it ultimately comes down to knowledge. As long as people have the information and understand what it means, they can do whatever they want with it, and that’s their prerogative.
On that note, here’s my latest obsession.
Thanks to Follow Your Heart’s delicious vegan salad dressings, I’ve been a veggie queen as of late.
Who knew Caesar dressing could be both vegan and yummy? And organic, too!
When I was in high school I went through a major Caesar salad phase. It was all I ordered. Ever. I had forgotten how much I loved it until Follow Your Heart offered me products to try. As I browsed the website, I was instantly drawn to their vegan Caesar dressing and my fond memories of romaine crunch came flooding back.
So I tried to create an equally as tasty (vegan) version.
Caesar Brutus salad
- lettuce (romaine is optimal, but I used spinach)
- bell peppers
- extra firm tofu, cubed
- Follow Your Heart vegan Caesar dressing
- nutritional yeast
*if you’re a big nerd you’ll get the title reference
After combining all the salad ingredients, I added the dressing, gave it a good toss, and then added a bit more dressing and sprinkled nooch on top.
Et tu Brute?
This salad, while not much like the real Caesar, is much better. Probably not stab-your-friend-in-the-back better, but really good nonetheless.
Tofu is a good substitute for chicken; while the sprouts are the perfect ingredient to soak up all the dressing, much like croutons would. In addition to this delish dressing, sprouts are officially my new bestie. They make everything better. I need to get my sprout on (perpetual to-do list item)…