Friday, December 18, 2009

A New Year, A New Diet

I went to the hospital yesterday. I underwent a liver biopsy. It sounded a bit scary, but happily I snored through the whole procedure. The only bad thing was fasting all day. The procedure was scheduled for 12:45 pm and I couldn’t eat anything after midnight the night before. Of course the doctor was late getting there, so the biopsy didn’t take place until after 2 pm. Boy, was I ready to eat afterward!

It seems I have something called Fatty Liver Disease. I understand all three words separately, but I was unfamiliar with the three of them put together like that. I had to do some online research to see what I’m up against. The doctor had a skinny little pamphlet, but I needed more information.

Apparently there are three main causes for what I have. The first one listed was excessive alcohol consumption. I’m allergic to alcohol, so that’s not the problem. The second cause is improper needle use. I have no tattoos, and the only time needles go in me is when blood is drawn for these tests. So, assuming the nurses know what they’re doing, that possibility is eliminated. The third cause is – obesity! Hmmm. The doctor told me the biopsy was to determine the severity of the disease. He also said I need to lose ten to twenty percent of my body weight in order to effectively curb this problem. After the biopsy, he might up it to thirty. That would be just my luck!

I have nothing against eating healthy foods. Really. I love them. The problem is I also love unhealthy foods (hey, I don’t discriminate!) and sometimes I even eat lousy food, just because I feel like eating. So eating healthy is not a problem, but eating ONLY healthy foods will probably drive me nuts. I also like some exercise. I love walking across campus on a sunny day, swimming laps in the pool, and I had a good time in a tai chi class once. But the thought of doing it on a regular basis – because I HAVE to - turns my stomach juices sour.

Enough whining. Apparently my choice is pretty clear – if I want to be healthy and stay that way, I’ve got to make some major changes. Now. No excuses. The fitness center less than two miles away is offering a registration special. It’s time. And maybe some of my creative juices can be used to concoct foods that are so much fun I won’t miss the good old fried foods and sweets – and sweet fried foods (no more fried Snickers!)

Well, last week I was feeling pretty good about Christmas preparations. I still am – but now I can also say I’ve got one of my New Year’s resolutions planned for me! And like it or not, I’m going to have to keep this one. You see, I’ve got a lot to live for, and I’d just as soon be healthy as I watch each grandchild graduate, walk down the aisle, and become parents.

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