Saturday, June 9, 2007

Health Nuts

I have a love-hate relationship with Health Food stores. On the one hand they have all kinds of nifty things that regular stores don't: sugar-free candy that actually tastes good, food with out hydrogenated oils or preservatives, that kinda thing. On the other hand every health food store employee has their favorite products and their life story to go with them.

Upon entering the health food store you will be pounced on by one of these employees. The employees are trained to sense when a customer has no idea what he or she is looking for. It's probably not very grueling training, most people tend to get a deer-in-headlights look simply from glancing at the array of vitamins and suppliments covering the walls of the establishment.

You think your multi-vitamin includes everything, but you are tragically mistaken. In-fact, scanning the selection to be had you realize that you're not even sure what is in your multi-vitmain. Does it have vitamin B? I think it does. The sales lady even explains to me that vitamin B is for energy and I know for a fact that I bought my multivitamin specifically because it said "All Day Energy" on the bottle. The problem is, that faced with this woman and her life-story of woe and healing, which can apparently be attributed soley to her special blend of vitamins, supplements, and exercise, I am no longer sure what my vitamins are for. I can't even remember why it is I came in the store. Clunk. In go the vitamins. It happens every time. I swear, with a good story they could probably sell me healthier paper bags to hold my lunch in, it's just that overwhelming.

The other thing that makes me nervous about health food stores is that the employees seem to regaurd themselves as volunteer physcians. They are constantly looking at the recommended dosages of things or the warning lables and laughing mockingly. "That's ridiculous!" they shout for the whole store to hear. Everyone laughs, me a little nervously. I'm sure that taking three caplets of a vitamin/supplement a day versus one (or did the lady recommend six?) is not going to kill me, but if three (or six) is right, why did the manufacturers say one?

I had an actual doctor who did this once. He gave me narcotics and then told me that while the instructions and the law say not to drive while taking them, that it was perfectly alright. My hippi-new-age doctor told me that the laws simply haven't caught up with medecine and that narcoutics simply aren't a problem that way anymore. My doctor was on crack. I ran my car into a small hill the first and last time that I drove while taking those.
All this to say, taking anything other than the recommended dosage in the perscribed way, adhering to all restrictions and guidelines, makes me really nervous (unless of course it's ibuprofin, everyone knows those guidelines don't mean anything).

But I can't stop going to health food stores, no matter how frustrating/delusional I find their employees. I don't know of any major retailer that carries Back to Nature Cinnamon Graham sticks. Now those, are life changing.


Robin Marie said...

wow, Melody. Just wow
oh, and lookie here:

Robin Marie said...

let me try that again

Jonathan Erdman said...

Nice post.

This should be a must-read before anyone enters a health-food store.

Even worse than the healt-food store is a trip to the GNC. You are met by a guy who works GNC during the day and then hits the gym by night and enters body building competitions on the weekend. His body is toned with muscles so prominent you know it isn't just because he drinks the one-a-day protein shakes he is trying to sell you. You also know that whatever it is that's got him looking like a Greek god it has done much to reduce the number and functionality of his brain cells.

But, heck, the guy looks great, so you've got to take his word for it. Buy the protein powder. Or drink the energy mix. Or eat the power bar. Whatever.......

Melody said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
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