Lost in the Grocery Store


As most of you know, I am on a low everything diet… sodium and calories in particular. My schedule has been to consume less that 2 grams a day of sodium and less than 1500 calories per day. With that said, and even with losing a good deal of weight, I find that I am still retaining fluid. So, my doc reduced my sodium intake to 1 gram a day and calories to 1,200 a day.

I decided that I was going to go to that grocery store and take the bull by the horns. Well, I thin it turned out to be less bull by the horns and more the running of the bulls. I am pleased to announce that Del Monte has some little cans of NO SALT ADDED corn, green beans and sweet peas. Thank you Del Monte.

I have been eating Cheerios because of its low sodium content. I am on the cereal aisle looking at every box. Man, this stuff seems to be made out of salt. My cherrios has 240mg of sodium for one serving. I was looking for ways to cut back. It so happened that I ran across and old, old-time cereal – Post Mini Wheats – which has NO sodium at all. Thank you POST.

I have been eating a lot of pork chops or tenderloin and chicken fillets. I wanted to find pork and chicken with low sodium. I go to the wrong place… the deli counter and talk with the lady back there… telling her that I wanted a half pound of chicken and port tenderloins cut into 2 oz slices. I made sure she understood LOW SODIUM. She was very friendly… seemed very knowledgable about her job. She handed me the two little packets. I look at them and ask “How will I know how much sodium is in each of these?” She comes around to the front of the counter, opens the glass, pulls out the chicken or pork from which she was cutting my slices, looks at me in an assuring way and says 450mgs per 2 ozs. Folks – 450mgs of sodium is not low sodium when you are limited to 1000mgs. I place these useless (to me) packets in the cart and we move on.

Have you ever looked at the sodium content of bread? The norm runs from 70mg to 250mg per slice. Some of the wheat bread you think is good for you is not. especially the bread that says it is healthy is not for me. I am staying with Nature’s Own Butterbread which has 70mg of sodium per slice.

Hot dogs are an absolute no no, with 400mg per Frankfurter. Hamburger patties has 450 per patty. We found some frozen ones in the meat section that had 95 mg. We put them in the basket. Checking out other meats, I ran across some hamburger (Lean 80%) in the package that was 45mg of sodium. SOLD.

I figured out that in a grocery store I am in a foreign country. I don’t know the language nor the lay of the land. When we got to the car I was exhausted. Now I understand why it takes Shirley so long to go to the store. I will keep on investigating how to create menus and meal plans that will keep me meeting my goals.

Do you ever get frustrated with your faith… your understanding if faith? Do you ever feel like you are in a foreign land unable to understand the language or know where to go. a while back there was the discovery of a term known as “Resident Aliens.”

Resident Aliens: Life in the Christian Colony is a 1989 book authored by theologians Stanley Hauerwas and William Willimon. The book discusses the nature of the church and its relationship to surrounding culture. It argues that churches should focus on developing Christian life and community rather than attempting to reform secular culture. Hauerwas and Willimon reject the idea that America or any other country is a Christian nation, instead believing that Christians should see themselves as “residents aliens” in a foreign land, using the metaphor of a colony to describe the church. Instead of conforming the world to the gospel or the gospel to the world, they believe that Christians should focus on conforming to the gospel themselves.

Hauerwas and Willimon proceed to discuss ethics and the relationship between Christianity and politics, critiquing the notion that Christians, or the church as a whole, should attempt to transform secular governments or get overly involved in politics in an attempt to change society. Instead, the role of Christians is to live lives which model the love of Christ. Rather than trying to convince others to change their ethics or redefine their ethics, Christians should model a new set of ethics which are grounded in the life, death, and resurrection of Christ. Churches, therefore, should be places which help cultivate and grow disciples.

Perhaps I am to not seek to change the grocery store but live a healthy life myself in the midst of the grocery store. And it is also true about our faith, as well. My job is not to spend my life changing the grocery store but live healthy and just perhaps the grocery store will see it and seek to become healthy in itself.

In Christian terms… model Christ… a new set of ethics based on the life, death and resurrection of Christ.

Be healthy alien…

Grace and Peace



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