Pi’s popular “Ask a rabbit!” advice column (translated from bunnyspeak into the English language by Biz Stamm) returns with a diet question from a reader.
I recently transitioned to healthy diet and have pretty much eliminated junk food from my at-home eating habits. The only issue is that at work, my boss frequently rewards good work with boxes of donuts and giant bowls of candy. I’m great at not buying junk food, but I find myself pretty helpless when it is presented to me. Please help!
On The Timeclock Binger
Hey there OTTB. This is a very difficult issue that many of us face. I for one, am completely helpless in the face of yogurt bites. Over the years, however, I have developed some great coping mechanisms that enable me to make better choices when confronted with delicious looking junk food (like that cheesepuff Mom just dropped on the floor).
First off, eat a good breakfast rich in protein and low in sugar and simple carbohydrates. The only thing that separates simple carbs from sugar are a few covalent bonds, so from a dietary standpoint it’s best to treat them as the same thing. Eating food high in sugar causes your blood sugar level to spike and then crash. =These crashes are what lead to the sudden cravings and pangs of hunger that can make those unhealthy treats look so good. I personally avoid sugar because it makes me gassy, and after a great deal of experimentation I’ve found the extra gas propulsion does not improve my hopping ability as I hypothesized. Mom has been eating mini frittatas for breakfast these days and says she will post the recipe on the “Fit to Ride” Facebook page later this week.
Next, you’re going to want to be sure you’re staying hydrated. In the wintertime it can be tough to remember to drink, but it is just as important as in the hot weather. Caffeine-free teas are a great option on those really cold days when a cool glass of water doesn’t seem appealing.
Lastly, you are going to want to arm yourself with healthy snacks so you have a better option when confronted with unhealthy food. Whenever I’m having a craving I turn to my treat log.
Now I realize that you humans may not find a treat log all that appealing, but the filling inside is made up of seeds and dried fruit. I believe you guys have something similar called trail mix. Be sure to get a trail mix that is completely made of nuts, seeds, and dried fruit. Avoid things like chocolate and pretzels. Most grocery stores have a bulk section with some great trail mix options. Whole fruits and vegetables, like apples and carrots, are also great snacking options. I sometimes get a little too into the whole carrot thing, but it’s better than donuts.
Well OTTB. I hope that advice is useful. Thanks for writing. If anyone else out there in Horse Nation has a health or fitness question, please post it to the “Fit to Ride” Facebook page using the hashtag #askarabbit.
Biz Stamm is the 29 year old trainer and instructor of Stamm Sport Horse, LLC, specializing in pure dressage, as well applied dressage for riders involved with other disciplines. Originally haling from Hudson, NH, She is now living in Corvallis, OR. Biz started riding lessons at the age of 6 years old when the Dr. recommended that it may help with her bad balance and lack of coordination. While she is fairly coordinated and balanced on a horse these days, she is still somewhat of a mess on her own two feet.
Biz currently owns two horses: her lesson horse, Kalvin, a 7 year old half-Arabian gelding…
… and her personal horse, Alpha Helix, a 2 year old Kiger mustang gelding. Biz has had Helix since the day he was weaned, and considers him her “heart” horse.
Biz is also the proud owner (more like ownee!) of a 5 year old standard rex bunny named Pi Rex Rufuse (Get it!? Pi r-squared!!!). Biz has always wanted to have some sort of mini horse to live in the house, and since the current landlords won’s allow any kind of equine on the property, Biz opted for a rabbit, which evolutionarily speaking, is very closely related to the horse.
After getting a Masters degree in Plant Pathology, and pursuing a career in the scientific world, it became clear to her that she was only truly happy when she was interacting with, or talking about horses (and sometimes rabbits). Now that she is riding full time, Biz still keeps her scientific training close at hand, focusing on correct biomechanics and physics involved in riding.