We all talk a good game about how to eat, what to eat, and the importance of preparing our own food from quality ingredients. The truth is that everyone faces the same dilemmas from time to time. Whether it's travel, working late, business lunches, social outings, or simply not being interested in cooking, there are many reasons that eating that home cooked meal may not always be possible.
I've decided to pose a series of questions to our members on a weekly basis on what gets them through these situations. You might be surprised at some of the answers and others might be exactly what you expected — either way, I'm hopeful that this will help you navigate your way through the myriad of awkward, inconvenient, or simply lazy situations you find yourself in.
Kurt Perkins from Colorado Springs, Colorado
CA: Do you put much thought into where you eat out? Or do you simply go anywhere and try to make do with what's on the menu?
KP: In our life situation with 3 pre-school aged boys, that eat like adults, we try and look for quantity and quality at the same time. We have raised our boys so far without them experiencing what a bowl of cereal is, that fish oil and probiotics make a great dessert, and if you don't like what you're served, you can wait until the next meal.
With that said, we do have a handful of places we go that can both satisfy a gluten-free, paleo-ish meal that also fills them up. When we eat out, we primarily do Indian or Thai food. With other style restaurants, we will get them meat and veggies and sweet potatoes if available.
CA: Most memorable restaurant meal in (or near) Colorado Springs?
KP: We are on first name basis with the owners of an Indian place called Mirch Masala. We were introduced to that restaurant while my wife and I were only dating probably in 2006/2007. The owners have seen us in every stage of life from dating, to engaged, and now with three kids. For us, not only is the food amazing but it's been a part of our family journey. If we try other Indian places, A.) we leave disappointed as the flavors don't compare, and B.) the atmosphere isn't as welcoming and we feel like we're cheating on Mirch.
CA: Most memorable restaurant meal outside of Colorado Springs?
KP: When we go to visit family in Rochester, NY, an aunt and uncle will take my wife and I to an Indian place there called Haveli.
CA: For people with special diets, how do you suggest they talk with restaurant staff in order to get what they need?
KP: If you ever visit Colorado Springs, this will be the easiest conversation of your life. Any local place pretty much has you covered with special dietary needs. Even some of the national chains have a variety. But I think people have to be realistic when they go to a restaurant. I had a consult with a woman once that was complaining about going to an Italian place and they couldn't guarantee their meal was 100% gluten free. That's just setting yourself up for failure.
Restaurants want to serve great tasting food, efficiently, and cost effectively so they can stay in business. They will use cooking techniques and ingredients that you may not use at home. Pick your poison of what you think will derail your health goals the most and work around the others. For us, it's the wheat products.
CA: Do you prepare an emergency meal when you travel? If so, what do you include?
KP: My wife is fantastic about bringing food when we travel. It's often leftovers from a previous meal or things that aren't so messy like chicken and fruit, that also taste good cold. She will pack some clean deli meats, crispy bacon, apples, nuts, clementines, and maybe some mashed sweet potatoes for the youngest.
CA: Your favorite quick meal to prepare at home?
KP: Eggs. When in a bind, eggs often hit the plate. Thankfully our kids love them and are open to eating them in different forms whether scrambled or over easy. We are thankful that Costco now sells organic eggs in 5 dozen boxes.
CA: Do you consume alcohol? Explain why you think it is or isn’t a good idea.
KP: I consume alcohol maybe 2x/year at happy social occasions and limited to a drink (that's all it takes before I feel the effects). When you look up lightweight in the dictionary, don't be surprised to see my picture. One of the biggest reasons I don't is that I think most of it tastes gross; beer, wine, etc. For something to be palatable, it has to be mixed with things that taste like candy such as soda or eggnog and to me that's a double whammy of sugar and insulin load. Where I think alcohol is a really bad idea is when it's being consumed out of misery or the intent to get drunk (even if out of celebration).
CA: In terms of food, what is your guilty pleasure?
KP: I love burgers. The more toppings the better. They never get old to me. We could go to a steak house and it's hard for me not to order the burger.
Hey, my name is Dr. Kurt Perkins, DC CCWP CFMP. I put a lot of time in and paid a lot of money for all those initials after my name but they don’t really matter unless I can help solve your problem. In fact, there are a lot of professionals with impressive initials after their names yet have no tools to help you get better.
My passion is to get you to create ‘More Health, Less HealthCare.’ What makes my heart sing is helping good people out of bad situations. One of the worst situations someone can face is poor health. One of my favorite quotes is that a person with great health has 1,000 dreams. A person with poor health, only has one.
We live in a time in history where we have unlimited resources to get and stay well. The irony is that we have the worst health outcomes and we pay the most money to get those outcomes. Remember all those other professionals with expensive initials after their names? Our healthcare system, though great at emergencies, has no answer for the 80% of Americans suffering with chronic illness.