For those movie lovers out there, an oldie, but goodie is the romantic comedy “When Harry Met Sally”. The movie starred Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal and showed the ups and downs of their relationship over a 20-year span. In one scene, Harry professes the reasons why he loves Sally, and in a very funny way, starts enumerating her many “high maintenance” eating characteristics that she exhibits, such as ordering salads with dressing on the side, different foods not touching each other, how the food needs to be prepared etc. Going to a restaurant with her was not a simple matter, as she would take lots of time making her specific changes to the foods offered on the menu. (By the way, at the end of this entry, I will post a video of the funniest scene from the movie….and yes, for those of you that have seen the flick, you will remember: “I’ll have what she is having”.)
One of the reasons I laugh so much at the movie is because my wife, Nataliya, is very much the same as Sally. When the waiter comes to take our order, I often cringe about how much “high maintenance” the poor person is about to endure. Unlike me, where my “exception to the menu offering” may be as simple as “No onions please”, my lovely wife’s directions become a sort of ordeal: “No croutons, dressing on the side, little oil to be used in preparing the fish, double order of vegetables instead of the rice, little oil on those vegetables”….and the list of “demands” goes on and on. For this reason, I jokingly refer to Nataliya as “HM”, standing for “high maintenance”.
However, when it comes to eating out at restaurants when you are on a weight control effort, do not be afraid to be “High Maintenance”. Left to their own menu listings without “maintenance”, the house dressing for the salads may be a creamy, high-caloric offering, the protein dish will come with a starch, they may prepare their food with lots of butter, bread will be brought to the table, etc etc.
The point: Do not be afraid to be “High Maintenance” when it comes to ensuring that the foods you are eating are compatible with the goal of a high protein-high vegetable/low carb/low fruit/low fat approach. We all would rather not make our waiter’s work more difficult by asking for lots of changes but at the same time, if we do not make changes that will help our weight control efforts, the meal may derail our entire week of diligent weight control work. Give the guy/gal and extra few bucks on the tip if you feel “guilty” about the HM activity. However, being “HM” can help your weight control efforts.
And, for one of the funniest scenes in a romantic comedy, watch this: