By Sue Knorr
I live in New England, Connecticut to be exact. Being in Connecticut in winter means snow, sleet, freezing rain, ice and more snow. When you stop at the grocery store to find no shopping carts are left at the entrance, and the checkout lines are about a mile long, it can only mean one thing, that a winter storm is coming soon. It never fails. Once the weatherman announces more snow on the way, people in Connecticut run to the store in droves to buy bread and milk. Some shoppers are also picking up snow shovels, ice melt and batteries, but most of them are buying bread and milk, the staples of the typical American diet.
Recently I found myself joining those who flock to the store in the calm before the storm. Yes, I willingly became a participant in the pre-storm stocking-up phenomenon. As I stood in the checkout line, immediately I noticed that my cart loaded vegetables and berries definitely stood out among the others. I admit, I had gone a bit overboard. I had several kinds of tomatoes, fennel, spinach, peppers, onions, mushrooms, eggplant, celery, green beans, cucumbers, avocados, strawberries and more. In my defense, I am a long-time Zone girl. What else can I say? Batteries, who needs those? But take away my veggies, and I'm lost. As you might have already guessed, almost everyone else was buying some combination of bread, milk, cookies, Gatorade, chips and beer. The Gatorade, who knows why?
The lines were long that day. My mind began to wander. At first, I smiled to myself as I thought, who else but a hardcore Zoner ventures out during the first flakes of a blizzard, just to make sure they have plenty of vegetables on hand? I stood in line beaming proudly at my cart of vegetables. It was about then that a store manager happened by and shouted out to the people in front of me, "Gotta have enough bread and beer when it snows!". I quickly noticed that these people were loaded down with so much bread, pizza crust, Danish pastry and beer, they could have fed a small army.
Then my mind took a turn to a much darker, a much more serious place. I became lost in my own little world, back in my pre-Zone days when I was morbidly obese and carrying around 100 extra pounds, when I was wearing too-tight size 22 pants and feeling very fatigued and tired all the time, when I was not able to keep up with my kids and their activities, and when the numerous medications my doctors prescribed were not lowering my high blood pressure. Sad to say, but in those days I never would have had the least bit of concern about being snowed in without vegetables on hand. My thoughts drifted to where I might have been today, health-wise, if I hadn't followed the Zone Diet and lifestyle for the past 18 years. It was a very sobering thought. I certainly had not been headed in a good direction.
As I unloaded my cart of vegetables, my mood lightened, secure in the knowledge that I have indeed changed my life for the better, thanks to Barry Sears and the Zone. My final thought, as the cashier began scanning my order, was wow, what a changed world this could be if everyone got rid of their bread, pastries and chips and replaced them with things like green beans, avocados and strawberries.
In case you're wondering about the high blood pressure, my doctors discontinued the medications years ago because I no longer needed them. To this day my blood pressure remains below what's considered the average for an adult.
Until next time, happy Zoning!