Friday, August 12, 2005

Working Things Through the System

As I’ve mentioned, Larry & I are trying to eat healthier and Trader Joe’s is a huge part of that equation. Because of their organic and low-fat foods, you ask? Heck no, we like their salsa and corn chips with lime-chipotle. But while we’re there, we do try some of their other foods.

There is a TJ’s about 1 mile from my office. Their frozen dishes have become a staple and I headed over at lunch to replenish my stock at work. Unfortunately, I share the freezer with 87 of my closest work friends, so I can only buy a few items at time.

Today I bought three shredded beef burritos and a canister of Whey powder for my morning protein shakes. I used to buy Soy powder but my friend Greg told me it would enhance the estrogen in my system. Um yeah, like that’s all I need. I’m already the charter member in the Patti LuPone fan club.

So with luck, the Whey will keep me breast-free. I tried Wheat Germ once and that went right through me. Seriously, I didn’t even finish the shake before I had to go. But the subject of today’s thoughts is the burrito rather than my overactive colon.

The burrito was the healthy substitution to the chimichanga, my first frozen love at TJ’s. In recent months, I have recommended the chimichanga to family and friends. I personally, have increased the market share on this product in the DC metro area by 6%, (2% nationally).

A few weeks back, as I was microwaving the chimi, I fatefully decided to read the nutritional chart. God, I hate these things. Why must they tell how bad things are for you? Was there a nutritional chart for Cop Rock or Manimal? I watched those and look what I turned into.

Thus my need to pay greater attention to the dietary information.

I make the switch from chimis to burritos, mainly because the chimi has 930 grams of sodium and the burritos had 510. Another of my loves, tragically cast aside for logic and reason. What kind of world is this?

So today as I ride the elevator, reflecting on my good health and bowel functions, I validate myself in the 510 grams for each of the four servings. FOUR SERVINGS? Wait… there are only two burritos in the package. I look again. Sure enough, each serving is half the burrito.

How can anyone take a package of products and subdivide them? That’s like taking the package of eight hotdogs and giving nutritional information for 24 servings. I mean who (besides all children under four) eats half a 5-inch burrito? If I wanted to be healthy by limiting my intake, I’d sing with Wilson-Phillips and have my freaking stomach stapled.

And my god, 510g of sodium in 2.5 inches? I’d be better off with my Velveeta & Shells.

As the elevator doors opens, I hold the three packages in my hand. Realizing that my frugalness trumps my dietary needs, I place 6120g of salt into the 8th floor freezer. I wonder how I will ever purge my body of this toxin.

Perhaps I was too hard on the wheat germ.


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