Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Weight Watchers, geriatric medicine, and the president's health care speech

Yesterday I really blew my Weight Watchers points by having one egg, one piece of toast, and a bit of butter for breakfast, then a half tongue sandwich for lunch (tongue is really high in points, but I do love it). In the evening I had a really low point supper--a bit of smoked salmon (low points), and hearts of palm, grape tomatoes and blueberries (no points). But today I ate much more and came in one point under my daily allowance: went to the TCOM retirees luncheon with Charles and had a small piece of really good, moist, tender chicken, roasted veggies, and salad (of course I dropped a piece of lettuce, dripping with dressing on the front of my white shirt and wore a stain the rest of the luncheon). Tonight I had a Hebrew National hot dog (no bun) with kraut, German potato salad, and pea salad. If you just put pea salad in the Weight Watchers search it comes up with a lot of points, assuming it has cheese and egg yolk in it, so I listed it by ingredients--egg white only, no cheese, peas, a pinch of dry mustard, a tiny bit of sweet pickle relish and a fourth tsp. of mayonnaise. It was delicious and no damage to my diet.
At the retirees luncheon today, a geriatric physician spoke about the new grant the osteopathic college had gotten to infuse geriatric training into all four years of medical school, residency programs in all specialties, and continuing education for practicing physicians. She talked abut the tsunami of elderly that will hit with the baby boomer generation. I thought I was too old to be a boomer, but they say it covers people born from 1936 to, I think, about 1960, so I squeaked in. The main speaker, however, was her husband, an administrator who specializes in geriatric studies. He emphasized two things: life style and financial arrangements. Apparently we elderly live longer according to our lifestyle choices--movement, diet and exercise, involvement in activities, etc., and we live better if we have planned ahead and made good financial arrangements. He urged people to test-drive their choices--don't sell your house and move into assisted living; keep the house and try assisted living for two or three months. Made good sense to me. It was a long program, but most interesting. He was good, too, at audience involvement, asking everything from how long people had been retired to did they regularly use email. Charles said he did, and I told him he was a cheat.
It was interesting tonight, after that luncheon, to listen to the president's address on health care. I admit I'm not savvy on all the issues, but he sure made good sense to me. Once again, I'm reduced to saying I don't understand it all, but I know something has to be done, and his plan is the best option I've yet heard. I was amused to see that Michelle Obama wore a bright pink outfit--you could easily spot her in the visitors' gallery. But both Hillary Clinton and Nancy Pelosi had on bright red pant suits, so they too really stood out. But don't they know red is the Republican color? I'm not sure but tonight I didn't see as many Republicans sitting on their hands as usual when the Democrats stood to cheer--oh, sure, there were some. I'll be interested to see the feedback from what is called the make-or-break speech in the next few days.

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