1. Read the "Nutri- Case" about Liz described below.
I used to think of my peanut allergy as no big deal, but ever since my experience at that restaurant last year, I've been pretty obsessive about it. For months afterward, I refused to eat anything that I hadn't prepared myself. I do eat out now, but always insist that the chef prepare my food personally, with clean utensils, and I avoid most desserts. They're just too risky. Shopping is a lot harder, too, because I have to check every label. The worst, though, is eating at my friends' houses. I have to ask them, "Do you keep peanuts or peanut butter in your house?" Some of them are really sympathetic, but others look at me as if I'm a hypochondriac! I wish I could think of something to say to them to make them understand that this isn't something I have any control over.
What could Liz say in response to friends who don't understand the cause and seriousness of her food allergy? Do you think it would help Liz to share her fears with her doctor and to discuss possible strategies? If so, why? What are some possible strategies for Liz to utilize? In addition to shopping, dining out, and eating at friends' houses, what other situations might require Liz to be cautious about her food choices?
2. Amber, like many Americans, is overweight. After years of dieting and losing weight and then gaining it back again, she is now more than 40 pounds overweight. She can't figure out why it is so hard for her to lose weight and keep it off.
She decides that something must be wrong with her to be such a dieting failure. Maybe she has an abnormal metabolism, or maybe she just doesn't have sufficient willpower. She feels tired most of the time and has very little energy.
She is very busy with two kids and has a demanding job as an elementary school teacher. She tries to cook healthy meals for her family but is often too tired and stressed to bother, so she stops to get fast food on her way home. To make matters worse, her 7-year-old son recently came home from school and said the kids were teasing him for being fat. Amber decides that it is time to make some major changes for the entire family, but she really doesn't know where to start. She hopes that she can help her son by finding a diet that works for him. A further issue that complicates Amber's circumstance is the fact that her husband doesn't have a weight problem, which she must take into account when considering any changes in family meal planning or lifestyle.
She decides to do something she's never before thought necessary -- she makes an appointment with a Registered Dietitian.
Which of Amber's challenges to weight loss do you think the RD should prioritize first, second, third? Discuss how and why each challenge is meaningful. Given her challenges, what advice and strategies do you think the RD will offer Amber? If Amber chose to take only one piece of the RD's advice, which piece (or what change) do you think would be most beneficial to Amber?
3. Discuss prevention of eating disorders... what needs to change in our society? In our families? In the sporting world? In schools? Etc. What is the best way to go about make these changes and why?