The Pandemic 15—You got this.

You’d be lucky to have my Aunt Margaret as a friend on Facebook. Why—you ask? Honestly, she’s the best thing on social media. Most recently, she brought this timely question to our attention: “Do you think most people will gain more weight or lose weight in the next 3 months?”

Aunt Margaret, it is a valid question. “The pandemic 15” you all know is a thing, like “The freshmen 15″—meaning the pounds you’ll gain during your quarantine.

Are you a stress eater? Not allowed to leave the house? Sounds like you could use a diet right now. Isn’t it true that high stress and elevated cortisol levels can lead to bad health stuff, even weight gain? Rather than prohibiting certain foods or food groups, let me suggest a portion-control method that I’m pretty sure is unprecedented.

Like stacking Jenga blocks, balancing foods upon a grapefruit is a challenge you’ll be determined to win.

The balance on a grapefruit method.

Growing up, my mom was almost always on a diet, she was a Weight Watchers lecturer, and participated in most fad diets or ate those foods which promised weight loss. As a kid, it was hard and weird to me, as I never thought of her as overweight, she just said she was. 🙁 But those fears of gaining weight were inherited and have followed me my whole life, as they have many of us.

So, while I’m all for a healthy weight and lifestyle choices, I decided to veer off the diet pathway a bit, be a little kinder to myself and not so extreme about that right now. As a “should I eat” determiner, I chose to balance the food I wished to consume on a grapefruit, inspired by “The Grapefruit Diet” which was a real trend at some point (my mom ate quite a lot of them). Like stacking Jenga blocks, balancing foods upon a grapefruit is a challenge you’ll be determined to win. For example, I wanted that gluten-free apple pie so badly, I ended up sticking it on with tape. All is fair with this method, make your own rules, and most importantly enjoy what you choose to eat.

It’s April 1st, and wishing you all the best SLC, no foolin’!

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Jen Hill
Jen Hill
Former Salt Lake Magazine Associate Editor Jen Hill is a SLC transplant from Bloomington, Ind. As a blogger and feature writer, Jen follows the pulse of the community with interests in urban agriculture, business, fitness & beauty and anything that allows her to get out of the office and into the mountains.

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