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Dating made me fat. Marriage made it worse.

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In the past when I would go out to eat every now and then, I would meet up with my brother for dinner. We would find ourselves at a mom-and-pop restaurant, or some sushi place to catch up on our week and talk about life in general. I would always look forward to this time together.

Usually, our conversations would start out about work, politics and family. After all the seriousness wore off, we would somehow always end up regressing back as if we were 14 years old – talking about dating and people watching. If you’ve ever watched Seinfeld, my brother is Jerry and I am Elaine. Sometimes meaningless conversations about anything and nothing can take up three hours of our time.

When people watching at a restaurant, it was easy to distinguish couples on first dates from those who have been married for a long time. Have you ever done that? It’s interesting to watch, if you’re in a crowded restaurant with many different couples. New couples come in dressed up with big smiles on their faces, and are usually engaged more in conversation with one another with strong eye contact. The man is usually more physically attentive and the female appears to laugh more. When they order, they order smaller meals and both almost never finish their whole meal. In my mind as a female, I gather women don’t like to feel bloated when they’re on a date and they for certain don’t want any man to know they can probably eat him under the table anytime with a good dose of PMS! But, I don’t want to get off topic here. I think you understand what I’m trying to say.

The couples that appeared to be together longer had a much different dining experience. Usually, they’re not dressed up as much as the new couples. When they get to the table, the conversation seems limited and they both appear a little more worn out and eager to order quickly. They seem to order appetizers more often and they both finish all of their food. Dessert is almost never missed with these couples. I know this could sound biased, but I’m going by the majority of what I witnessed over the years.

Combined that with the fact that, as a longtime massage therapist, I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know people on a very intimate level through deep conversations. Most of my female clients that are out of shape express their weight concerns and mention that if they could take a break from their boyfriend or spouse for a few months they would be able to lose weight. A complaint they share is that one person in the relationship likes to eat healthy and the other doesn’t, or one eats too fast and causes the other to eat more than they typically would.

From my own experience in relationships, and from what I witness in others, it doesn’t always start out this way. When you’re single, most people will tend to focus on eating smaller meals and cooking tends to be healthier because you’re trying to attract the opposite sex. Once people start to date, the first activity they participate in is dining out often. I see it on Facebook with friends who start dating new people. They almost always start out leaner and looking their best when they first meet. As they continue to date, and more dates add up to more meals eating out, and the pounds begin to slowly creep up.

The same thing happens when people get married if they’re not in tune with exercise, or don’t have strict eating habits. They will both lose weight prior to the wedding and after the wedding it all goes the opposite direction, which can end up with two unhappy people who are now 25 to 40 pounds heavier than when they first met.

Eating has always been a social experience throughout history in this country and abroad. All cultures gather and celebrate with food – it brings people together. But centuries ago, and even 60 years ago, food was a lot healthier to eat. Even the junk food 30 years ago was healthier. If you’ve been following my last two blog posts we discussed GMO foods, genetically engineered foods, that have been altered and sprayed with very dangerous herbicides and pesticides. They are making people very sick today with all kinds of digestion issues and weight problems.

If you’re someone who does go out to eat, it’s really hard to avoid these poisons in your food, unless you pick an establishment that supports organic, non-GMO foods. I know that this can be really difficult when trying to date or even be social. It can be a challenge when you want to just hang out at home with your significant other and eat a large bowl of popcorn and not care where it came from. Sadly, we have to know where stuff comes from today and how it’s processed. You should want to know, especially if you want to live a full healthy life.

People are always happier and in better moods when they feel better about themselves, especially when they’re in relationships. I always feel better when I fit perfectly into my lean jeans and my stomach doesn’t feel bloated. I treat people better when I don’t feel fatigued and cranky. Eating out can be fun, but eating out today comes with a price. I understand you work all week and there are times you don’t want to have to go home and make a meal. So what can you do to modify your dining experience if you find yourself out with a date? What can you do if you want to enjoy a romantic dinner with your spouse? What if dating and marriage didn’t make you fatter like some people are experiencing? What if you set the ground rules for yourself by making better choices? What would be the result for yourself and your relationships? Think on that….

13 tips for making better choices when dining out

  • Before you leave your house, make some organic hot tea. Green, jasmine, and even chai are all good varieties with antioxidants. Warm tea will help suppress your cravings before you get to the restaurant.
  • Research healthy organic restaurants in the local area if you’re able to pick the place to eat beforehand. Even if the restaurant isn’t organic, some will offer gluten-free options, grass-fed beef and wild fish. A lot of restaurants also offer organic GMO-free beer and organic wines.
  • Stick to restaurants that don’t serve a lot of pasta or dishes that use a lot of fried foods and wheat, for example standard Italian, fast food, Mexican and Chinese chains.
  • Before you dine, look up the menu online to make a healthy choice easier before you arrive.
  • Refrain from drinking during dinner. Drinking anything while eating interrupts digestion and the enzymes in your body. Reserve drinking for after you’ve eaten.
  • Pick a restaurant that has low lighting and soft music, which actually helps you eat fewer calories. A recent study showed that when they took rats and fed them food under low lights and soft music, they ate way fewer calories compared to the other rats who had bright lights and louder music.
  • Choose fresh as much as possible. When ordering appetizers, stay clear of fried and raw foods, as well as foods with dairy and wheat.  If you order seafood, have shrimp and clams steamed to avoid parasites that can wreak havoc on your liver and digestion.
  • When ordering salads, avoid all house dressings and ask for balsamic vinegar, or apple cider vinegar with olive oil to be brought to the table. Most dressing mixes are high in sugar and have gluten in them. Stay clear of Caesar salads.
  • Avoid all bread and butter brought to the table.
  • Ask for veggies with a main course to be steamed without butter and request olive oil is drizzled over them.
  • When picking carbs for a side dish, I always ask for the baked potato with a side dish of scallions and lemon, or vinegar brought to the table to mash into the potato. I avoid all pasta, rice and French fries.
  • When picking your meat, choose wild fish, wild turkey if they have it, lamb or grassfed beef. Avoid Lobster unless it’s from a private fisherman, since commercial lobsters have chemicals in their tanks. Also, although lobster is high in protein, it’s typically higher in cholesterol.
  • Desserts are really hard to consume without having a lot of sugar. Try to order a fruit of some sort, or anything with dark chocolate. Avoid cheesecakes and desserts with a lot of sugary sauces with dairy. I will usually just take a spoonful of a dark chocolate piece of cake and have a hot tea at the end.

I hope these tips help when you’re dining out under pressure for your next outing. Remember, most of all corn, soy, sugar beets and wheat fields are genetically engineered. Glyphosate is used as a very toxic herbicide that contaminates the food that makes its way to most restaurants in the United States. Keep this in the back of your mind anytime you choose to eat outside of cooking organic, GMO-free food at home. It will save your life. I say this with love and concern to all of my readers. God bless!

Jaime Arto

Author

With more than 24 years of diverse experience in the health and wellness industry, Jaime has
dedicated her life to caring for and enabling people to increase their overall wellness.

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