Well, after nearly two years or longer my family and I made it back to a Big name Chain buffet here in town. We stopped going there years ago because the food quality was not up to par and we ate too much…but because of a birthday party my daughter was invited to, we decided to give it a try and eat dinner there while she partied with her friends.
What a mistake.
I should have known we needed to turn back when I saw the ad for the “cotton candy and chocolate fountain” at the front door. Those are not key words for nutrition.
But we went on in, fought the crowded line, paid for our buffets (12 bucks each) and settled into our booth. Amid approximately 150 other people that had the same idea. But judging from their affection for the food, they were regulars.
Our server came by and told us we could go to the buffet whenever we wanted.
Having said that, if I could turn back time, I would. Its three days later and my lower intestine is still angry with me; and I tried hard to keep my choices at 1-4 ingredient recipes as much as possible.
But my system and my families systems are just not geared for processed foodstuffs of this magnitude anymore.
Every item was awash in butter, sauce or salt.
OR all three.
Overcooked vegetables floating in margarine and watery baths. I was so shocked at the food quality that I was thinking of running for the door. I really should have. I should have never gone. I should have told my daughter we would give the girl her present somewhere else or seen what I could do regarding her admittance and having her not eat from the buffet.
But hindsight is 50/50.
I have never seen so many people in sweat pants and pajama bottoms eating in a public place before. It almost looked as if 25% of the population had undergone some type of surgery and we were in the hospital cafeteria.
My son Benjamin looked at me and realizing our entrance fee to this culinary circus was nearly fifty dollars, said, “Mom, I am surprised some of these people can afford to eat here. It was difficult for us and we own our own pants!”
I was really saddened by the food choices. I have never seen so much processed food in my life and I think what made me the saddest is that nobody else seemed affected by it. While my husband was at the salad bar, which was a ghost town, my son and i tried to find foods we recognized.
I watched patrons pass by me with towers of fried chicken, gravies, sauces and bread and plates that were so amass with food I wondered if they thought they were charging per plate.
One woman next to us had to enlist the help of her kids to help move the table so she could get in. I was shocked that as a society we are getting so big in the waistline that it is common to see someone weigh over three hundred pounds.
We don’t even bat an eye anymore if we see a couple that weighs over 700 pounds. Yet, if you look back at photos of the 60s and 70s it was really uncommon to see someone of that stature and mass. In fact, anyone that large would have to have their clothes made because they didn’t manufacture clothing for people that obese.
I am so concerned at our culture of gluttony. What is good in small amounts seems to be even better in large. One scoop of icecream won’t do, let’s do three and put it in a cone as big as a hat while we’re at it.
No wonder our children are increasingly fighting more and more childhood obesity and diabetes. We are setting them up for failure when we approve of buffets that cater to processed foods and low quality food stuffs that are over cooked and under nutritionalized.
I am still what I consider and the National guidelines consider “obese” at 210 pounds.
I know I am still on the side of issues with my health, but at some point I realized I needed to step away from the grocery store shelves and get moving and prolong my life. Losing 50 pounds saved me from weighing 300 pounds which is where I believe I would have been by now if I had not stepped into some running shoes.
Our acceptance of high calorie foods and our lazy lifestyles have led us to being one of the most overweight countries in the world, if not THE most overweight country. Clothes are made for women and men that keep getting larger and larger and as a society we are okay with force feeding ourselves in order to feel better.
Next time, we will just send a gift card and show up for a slice of cake.