Each year, my husband and I have bloodwork done as part of our city-sponsored insurance. And each year, my family’s good DNA and longevity shine through. From cholesterol to triglycerides, my numbers consistently inspire awe and envy throughout the attending medical staff. In sharp contrast, Joe tends to walk out with the assigned reading of “A Simple Guide to Healthier Eating” and strong words of encouragement to follow up with a doctor ASAP.
Naturally, I gloat. But I also ask him to embrace some of my habits. I love Cheerios and oatmeal. I don’t eat a lot of meat. And chocolate is my b*tch. While I may be a bit chubby (BMI: 26), all other markers typically point to a long and healthy life.
Of his own accord, Joe started drinking green tea with honey last year. He replaced ice cream with sherbet. He began taking fish oil.
Confident I, once again, was the picture of perfect health, I nearly fell over during my yearly blood draw when my LDL cholesterol levels reflected imminent stroke. Meanwhile, Joe’s results were positively miraculous. All those little changes? They totally worked.
Where had I gone so wrong?
As I sat in yet another frozen hockey rink last week with one of my girlfriends, I cupped my extra large coffee with cream and bemoaned the mystery of the situation. My girlfriend, one of those freakish women who doesn’t possess a subcutaneous layer of fat (one that ALL HUMANS HAVE), offered up a suggestion:
“Yo, Mar. How many of those coffees you drinking a day?”
“I don’t know. More than I used to. Ice rinks are cold. And early morning basketball sucks.
Maybe two? Sometimes three?”
“There you go, genius. I thought you were the queen of Google. Do you even know how much fat and cholesterol is in that cream?”
I had no idea. But Google did. It was amazing I did not stroke out right then and there.
I had been consuming the equivalent of two cows a day. I immediately stopped drinking coffee with cream. I bought cholesterol-reducing foods such as nuts and fiber. I upped my oatmeal intake.
The most important people in my life deserved at least that. Giving up cream was a no-brainer. The caffeine withdrawals have been brutal, but what choice was there?
Enter stage right: “Silver Lining.”
RED WINE reduces cholesterol! Given my bloodwork, I now consider it prescribed and virtually mandatory. It also possesses the same thermogenic ability to warm up a person as coffee. Maria Von Trapp was right!
Whenever God closes a door, he opens up a box of wine.
Or something like that. Sorry. I’m on my second Merlot.