Literally, Real Life with Grace Valentine

Today’s topic: My Nutritionist is a Joke

No, I’m not some bougie white girl with a personal nutritionist. I’ll be candid, I’m planning on having weight loss surgery in March. One of the insurance requirements is that I meet with a nutritionist once a month for six months. Fair enough. I think it’s safe to assume that the insurance company hopes that you fail by gaining weight during the pre-operative phase, at which point the claim will be denied. Alternatively, they might actually want you to develop better eating habits. Who knows?

My first appointment with the nutritionist, she was twenty minutes late; typical of most professionals working in healthcare. From the waiting room door, she appeared; a tiny little pixie woman with blonde hair who sounded like Betty Boop. She began by weighing me then asked my reason for wanting surgery. It seemed like after my third sentence, I had almost given her too much info and she literally interrupted me and moved on to the next question. After 10 minutes of half-answered questions the appointment was over. I thought that maybe this was a fluke, she had been running late, maybe she had somewhere important to be? She knew I was doing (failing miserably) at Weight Watchers, so maybe she thought I already had a Master’s degree in nutritional science? I let it go, happy to make it home in time to watch Jeopardy.

A month later, at the next appointment, it was the same routine – weigh in, check in on the diet…but then, something miraculous and unexpected happened. There, before my very eyes was a beautiful Technicolor (clearly intended for elementary school students) sheet on PROTEINS! It was happening, she was actually going to share some nutritional wisdom with me. Finally, right?!

Wrong. I SWEAR TO THE UNIVERSE, she literally pointed to photos of farm animals and said “these are animal proteins, you should get most of your proteins from animals”. Then, the clincher, she pointed to a photo of black beans and advised me that they are a plant-based protein. She told me I could keep the sheet and that she’d see me next time. Was I missing something? Like an entire session of imperative nutritional knowledge something?  Like, no shit a bean is a plant based protein. I’m super secure in my ability to tell the difference between plants and animals.

Feeling a tad cheeky/annoyed/outraged/not super upset but kinda like WTF, I attempted to prolong the session by asking a question about portion size after surgery and daily calorie limits. Her response? Apparently, there’s another meeting with someone in my surgeon’s office who will go over all that stuff later. “All that stuff” like nutrition and shit? I politely left the appointment, as after-all, her recommendation does partially determine my eligibility for surgery. Another day when a skinny bitch triumphs over the beautiful fat girl with the dope personality…

A couple of weeks went by when I received an email about an insurance claim. I always check into these things and saw that it was for the nutritionist. Guess what they paid her…for ten minutes…to tell me that a cow is not a bean? Take a guess.

$250. TWO HUNDRED AND FIFTY FUCKING DOLLARS. I wish I had known that instead of my useless degree in Sociology, I could have had a useless degree in Nutritional Science that would result in getting paid $250 for 1/6 of an hour.

I have four more visits before the big day, so I’ll maintain my courteous ways but just know, deep down, I’ll be throwing shade at her for failing miserably at helping fat people be less fat. And, to all the good nutritionists out there doing their job – I salute you. Don’t take offense to this piece. Enjoy your night and remember that this was literally, real life.