Posts tagged beauty
Posts tagged beauty
So, who’s with me?
The Medical Industry Conforms to the Beauty Image
When I was working in the department of internal medicine, I became friendly with the dietician. She was a lovely woman, she spoke Hebrew and Arabic (and I suspect French as well). She was in charge of dietary counseling for patients in the department.
I was in charge of giving out food trays for breakfast and lunch in my area of the department. Every morning the dietician would give me a list of patients and their dietary limitations; if they were diabetic, they were not allowed sugar, if they had high potassium, they weren’t allowed tomatoes, and so forth. She had another rule: if the patient was fat, they received a low-carbohydrate diet.
But the dietician believed they were, and had a very simple formula for it:
Carbs = Fat
No carbs = No fat
If a patient was over a certain weight (usually around 100 kg) I was to remove bread or porridge or both from his tray before giving him breakfast. Sometimes the patients would beg, plead, or refuse to eat a thing if they did not receive a slice of bread on their tray. It was terrible to watch. But I had my instructions.
Instead of arguing with her, I assumed she probably knew more than I did, since she had a degree, after all. I removed the bread and the porridge. I took complaints from the patients. I kept quiet about my theory that she was prejudiced, that she believed there was an ideal weight for all human beings and anyone who was not that weight should change by not eating bread.
One day, I tested my theory. I was talking to my friend on the way back from our lunch break when we met the dietician in the hallway. I had been trying to convince my friend that she was pretty and she should stop thinking she was ugly. This particular friend is literally DROP DEAD GORGOUS (Big brown eyes with long fluttery eyelashes, smooth Middle-Eastern skin, tall, curvy, and a blinding straight-tooth smile.) If you ask her she’ll tell you she’s fat, but she’s not. She’s a little chubby, but in a very elegant, mature way.
I said to the dietician, “Isn’t she pretty?”
The dietician smiled and said nothing, but I could tell she was pleading the fifth.
My friend said, “I’m not, I need to lose weight. Right?”
The dietician nodded.
In my imagination, my jaw dropped and my eyes popped out of their sockets. I wanted to roar, “YOU SAID - WHAT???” But the damage was done. My friend now had a medical specialist confirm that she was ugly. For several weeks after that encounter she ate only salad for lunch.