The Hemp Connection + [women's health tips]

No, I DON'T want fries with that!

Last inCYST class, a student mentioned that more and more often, when she tries to special order items in order to eat in a more PCOS-friendly fashion, she is asked,"Is this a preference, or is this a medical issue?"

I was floored. I eat in restaurants fairly frequently with a male friend, who is very specific about what he eats. And he is very assertive about asking for substitutions that are not all that different from what I would encourage any of you to make.

Never once has he ever been questioned about his requests. They are gladly accommodated.

You can spend time being angry about how differently the two genders are treated in every day situations, or you can channel that energy into productive thinking.

Here are my thoughts.

1. It is possible to ask for alternatives, and you should not ever feel guilty about making such requests. The more often people ask for a fruit dish, or asparagus on the side, the more likely it is that restaurants will decide to make these readily available. It's all about demand and what will sell. If they know fruit and asparagus sell, they will put it on the menu.

2. If you are questioned about whether your request is a preference or a medical issue, tell them the truth. It is a medical issue.

3. Unfortunately, we live in a culture where lots and lots of businesses stay alive as long as we buy into the belief that their products, be they cookies, french fries, diet pills, etc., are things we need to spend money on. The kiss of death for a lot of these companies, is when we decide to live our lives in ways that don't include them. You might even say there are some drug companies that are more interested in your needing certain medications than they are in figuring out ways to get off of them.

--Who says it's normal to eat chocolate, every single day? The people who
sell chocolate and who need you to believe that.
--Who says a 2,000 calorie high fat, primarily fried meal at the local
restaurant is something you should be pressured into eating because the
waitress doesn't want to give you half a plate with a side of fruit? The
waitress who doesn't want to haggle with the chef in the kitchen who has to
take a few extra steps to accommodate the request.
--Who says taking a handful of medications every day is the only way to manage
PCOS? A caregiver who may not know enough nutrition to give different advice
and is offering what his/her vendors have encouraged him to offer first.

My take? Business always figures out ways to meet demands. If all of the people making cookies, french fries, diet pills, and medications, perceive that there is more money to be made in organic foods, healthy menu items, and exercise equipment, they'll gravitate toward the industries that are more likely to line their own pockets.

I'm not saying you all should throw out all your pills and defy your doctors. But if you've never been encouraged by your doctors to work hard on nutrition, activity, and stress avenues, and have only been offered procedural or pharmaceutical options, you have likely not been served in a way that prioritizes YOUR needs.

If all of us routinely inconvenience waitresses and physicians and advertisers who don't get our attention anymore…what we might collectively achieve is to encourage the availability of products and services that we'd rather spend our money on. Let's not do it to be annoying, but to tell them we'll work with them when they get onto the same page as we are.: )