If you (by surprise) were following me on Twitter @SarahRDtv from April 29 to May 1, 2015, you may have noticed I was on #OC15. “What is it?, you may have thought? Disclosure: I am a Christian and my church has sponsored members of our church to participate in this conference for the past few years. This year I was proudly asked to attend this amazing conference due to the fact that I am one of our Kid’s Church (a.k.a Sunday school) leaders. Our church covered our expenses, but definitely had little connection to social media and definitely did not encourage us to participate in blogging and/or social media. We all learned about our social connections at the conference. There were 6000 other people in the same boat as me. Wow!
So the conference is called “Orange Conference” 2015. The funny thing is that the orange part has nothing to do with nutrition, but about colors mixing. You know I am a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, but to attend a spiritual conference with an orange-theme was definitely inspiring. I LOVE citrus—I crave it, grow it, smell it, I’m surrounded by it in Florida, but….Here’s what I already knew and you may know already: Red + Yellow= Orange. Simple, right?
Red is the family + Yellow is the church and together =Unity.
Don’t roll your eyes, now. I won’t get preachy-preachy! But here is what I DO know—especially from my work with families struggling with overweight and obese children, from pregnant women that are struggling with their own nutrition and their children’s and with many parents that only want what is best for their families. The bottom line is….Community. If you ever are invited to attend a church/temple/community event…you must go! Do you know why? A bit of research here: if you have no read the “The Blue Zones”, you must! Or don’t read it if don’t care do live a long and nutritious life!
Most people who live a long, disease-free life have the following in common:
- Enough sleep and physical activity to sustain health and happiness.
- Eating until just satisfied without over consumption, but
- Eat most (if not every) meal with others!!!! Here is where our Orange comes in (and my family aims for).
- Be spiritual, and then share a meal together. Many of them.
After service at least once a month, my church shares a meal together. Call it a potluck if you prefer. It’s usually simple: pancakes, eggs, fruit, juice, milk and coffee. But here’s the deal: we are all responsible for what is on that menu. The last potluck I attended was sponsored by a host providing hamburgers and hot dogs. Here is what I brought: A dozen cupcakes with no icing, but included sprinkles (sugar without fat, right?)
But I also brought:
1 pound of steamed green beans mixed with 2 tablespoons olive oil, ½ teaspoon sea salt, 1 teaspoon minced Meyer lemon and a ½ cup of really great Greek olives
Guess what? It’s okay to bring both and most families appreciate the options of a little bit of sugar and vegetable dishes. If you are a parent, don’t stress about the mix; enjoy both. It’s ok. The kids only care that you are there. And all of our health is actually better in the long run when we eat as a community.