“Just a Little Light Dessert”

Yesterday wasn’t a regular workday.  I had a meeting for half the day, and so was able to go out for dinner with some work friends, which was very nice.  And very unusual for me because I commute so far, and so I really don’t socialize much with them.  Several of them are weight watchers, too, so that was nice.  The food was absolutely delicious, and beautifully presented, too.  I chose a Thai beef salad, which was a relatively good choice.  Just veggies and mango and of course the beef.  The dressing seemed to be pretty light.

So after everyone had eaten, there was some dessert discussion.  I had seen the case of desserts when I first came in and they looked amazing.  But I wasn’t going to order one.  To be honest, I was hoping a couple of girls would suggest ordering a dessert and sharing, and that is exactly what happened.  So one of my friends who has battled a weight problem as long as I’ve known her, and has just started W.W., ordered the chocolate mousse.  And she handed me a spoonful.  When I tasted it, I was surprised at how dense and rich and DELICIOUS it was.  I knew by the taste of it that it was basically dark chocolate, sugar, eggs, and cream or butter. And I commented to her that it was the essence of what great chocolate was supposed to be.  And she said to me, so innocently and enthusiastically, ‘its what I always order on a cruise, just a little light dessert.”  And I think that she  really thought that.  That because it came in a dish like pudding, and had no crust or other extra stuff with it, that it was an innocent, low-calorie, ‘light’ dessert choice.  I knew it wasn’t.

So I came home and looked up the nutritionals on a similar mousse.  670 CALORIES, 48 FAT GRAMS.

I had another friend (also a W.W.) and we were discussing going out to eat vs. going to get a small Cold Stone ice cream.  And she asked how many points in the Cold Stone.  A small cup has 16 points.  And she gasped and said, oh no, I’d rather eat lunch.  And I said that whenever I ate out, I always knew it was going to be at least 16 points.  She gasped again.  And I said, well, we can go, and you can order that salad you like, and we can pretend it is not 16 points.

 Knowledge is power.

 Its one thing to not care what or how much you eat.  That’s how I used to eat.  I never checked a label because I didn’t care.  I allowed myself to eat whatever and whenever I wanted, as long as it tasted good.  But to be ‘trying’ to lose weight and to arbitrarily assign ‘light’ or ‘low calorie’ to foods because that’s what you think they should be or want them to be, well, that’s just silly.

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8 thoughts on ““Just a Little Light Dessert”

  1. You might like to know that as I was walking by Cold Stone the other night (no, I didn’t have any), there was a girl giving out bite-size pieces of caramel-covered candy apples. “What’s this?” I asked. “Oh, Cold Stone now carries Rocky Mountain Candy Co. candy, too.” ARGH. Double Trouble.

  2. You are so smart!

    My sister, whom I love and adore, is very overweight. I think it’s because she and her husband eat out at least 4 times a week – she has no idea how expensive (calorie wise) those foods are versus eating at home. We went to Chili’s one day and she ordered the Quesadilla Explosion salad thinking it was a good choice since it was a salad. I didn’t have the heart to tell her that salad had like 1000 calories in it! She and her husband also golf – a lot, but instead of walking the golf course, they get a cart and ride to each hole. She thinks she’s getting exercise because “at least I’m moving”, but if she knew how many calories she could burn by walking, I think she would be surprised. She is very stubborn, so I know that if I try to give her health advice she’ll just dig in her heels and put her fingers in her ears. When she’s ready, I’ll be here ready to HOOK HER UP with all the health info she can handle.

    Knowledge truly is power!!

  3. Mel, then you could go there and have caramel apple pieces for an appetizer before the ‘main course.’ Or caramel apple pieces IN ‘Founder’s Favorite.’ JK

    Jill, Chili’s used to be one of my favorite restaurants, but I think I’ve gone there once since starting to lose weight. I know they have healthy options. It’s just that when I go there, its not the healthy options I want–my fault, not theirs. In fact, Hungry Girl’s newsletter this morning was about that. She told you about some ridiculously high calorie dish at a restaurant, and how to make a healthy swap-out. And in almost every circumstance, I thought, well, who wants to eat that–boring. And still too high in calories. Nope, for me its just better to stay home most days.

  4. Oh, my gosh – I had a MEDIUM coldstone the other day. I knew it was bad… but I had no idea! You’ve humbled me 🙂
    I’m glad you had a chance to spent some time with your coworkers! It’s hard to develop relationships at work. Getting out and spending some time together can really add a great new dynamic to work friendships.

  5. Everything is such a fooler – restaurant – stores – nothing much seems to be made from a healthy viewpoint – it always from a taste viewpoint. Until people start reading labels – I think most have absolutely no idea. . .

  6. I know how difficult it is to fall into that trap, when you don’t have calorie counts in front of you. Luckily here in NYC all chain restaurants are required now to post calorie counts, which has saved me many a moment of regret. I’ve started checking calorie counts on everything before I eat it, usually checking the web instead of trusting the number on the menu. It’s frightening how many calories are in some foods you wouldn’t suspect!

    -Meg

  7. People just don’t get it about restaurant food, do they?

    A chicken caesar salad? 1000 calories, 60 grams of fat. A turkey burger? 870 calories and 45 grams of fat.

    Oh, so you’re being mindful and asked for grilled fish? Guess what? They dip the whole piece in a pan of oil before they throw it on the grill so it won’t stick and all of your good intentions just went right out the window.

    The lady who sits behind me at WW complains constantly that she’s been on a six month plateau and in the next breath tells you where they have the best buffet lunch.

    So yeah, I totally agree with you. Sorry to come on so strong, but this is a hot button with me…

    Have been by a few times now; enjoying your blog.

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