Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Ok so this "easy A" class is gonna be the death of me

As some of you know I am a full time student at the Art Institute working to get my Bachelors degree in web design and interactive media. This is me for the first time, pursuing and fulfilling my dreams. You didn't read this wrong I did say for the first time, there have been other times in my life where I started trying to pursue a dream, but then life would get in the way, but that is for a different post.

So right now I am starting a new term in my courses. A few days ago I was sent this terms schedule and as I checked out my classes I saw that one of the classes I am in is.... Nutrition.....oh ...yippee. Saying that that doesn't fill my heart with excitement would be an understatement and I think many of you know why. Right away I thought, the title nutrition  probably hides a whole lot of diet and weight loss, calories in, calories out shtuff. Like seriously I am getting a bachelors degree for the work that I can do on the computer in my beloved graphic programs.... why the heck are you forcing me to take a junk class that has nothing to do with that? I hate my time being wasted, and it feels like I have been in school forever now the thought of wasting a term on that and prolonging my time in class tends to tick me off.

Well this weekend I got an introductory email from the professor, it said "We will learn a great deal information that will help you develop a positive nutritional plan for your future throughout the class. You will be able to use this information to benefit you as you continue your journey throughout your career and life." Uh huh....riiiiiight.

Speaking to my mom about it after she asked about my new schedule I shared how un-excited I was about it and how much of a waste of time it is made me just as annoyed. She acted as though she agreed with me, but then came the little statements that showed what she was really thinking. "Well it is always good to learn about good and bad foods, we all can use that", "Maybe you will learn some stuff that will help you get healthier", "you might find it inspires you to a different lifestyle",and "it is good to learn proper portion sizes." I tried telling her that I am healthy, I don't put morality onto foods, proper portion size is a relative thing, and my lifestyle right now keeps me healthy mentally, spiritually, and physically why should I change?  To which the response was "well then it will be an easy A for you."

Yeah I am thinking not so much. Our first discussion questions is "Identify the most significant factors of the traditional Mediterranean and Asian diets in decreasing health risks (such as breast and lung cancers, lowered incidence of Type 2 diabetes). What effect on the traditional diet have urbanization and the influence of Americanism had on the average person in these cultures?"  Ok yeah I could spout off what I know they are going to want to hear in this class, but I don't believe it to be true and right so saying it would be lying. If I speak the truth though, not only will I have to do 50 times the work to prove it to everyone else, and more importantly the professor, but I will still probably flunk because it won't be what the book says.

I truly am dreading this and don't know what to do. I really don't want my GPA dropping cause of stupid diet propaganda in academic clothing.

To make matters worse I just reviewed the first few days of the class assignments and found this lovely gem "For the next three weeks, you will be conducting a laboratory experiment to examine your diet. The food log assignment requires you to keep a detailed record of your eating patterns over a three-day period, analyze the information, and reflect on what you ate.  This laboratory experiment will culminate in the writing of a 3-5 page paper [a formal lab report] incorporating all of the information you collected and noted areas for improvement."

GRAAAAAAAAAAAAAH Many dirty words!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This is going to throw me right back into disordered thinking and hatred for myself. I HATED doing food logs every single time a new diet or nutritionist I would try or be sent to, would make me do it I am certainly NOT going to like it or get anything from it now. What the hell does this have to do with making me a better graphic designer, cause seriously all that crap kept me from this dream my whole life. I am so frustrated, I don't know how to handle this. 


  1. Ugh, I can totally understand your frustration. I couldn't do it, it would screw me up so much. Is there anyone you can talk to about your disordered thinking/eating etc in this context?

    Know that you have support in your FA community when you need it ok?

  2. How funny is it that I am a current Ai student, and I am taking the very same class. :-/ I have to answer the very same question and do the very same lab project. So how did you answer the question?

  3. Heather,

    First off it is so fun to meet a fellow student out of class, that doesn't happen all that often for me!! I hope you are able to get through the class ok!

    I really struggled through that class and actually found that it brought the disordered eating to the surface again especially when I found my teacher questioning the truth of what I was saying about my own habits. I think with that question in particular I noted that a lot of "popular" knowledge says that the traditional Mediterranean and Asian diets are the reason that the population of those regions tend to not deal as much with those health issues and diseases and also that most people seem to blame the increase of some of those health issues on the infiltration of the American diet. I then questioned that idea and suggested that there is a lot more to blame than just the diet. For instance those societies as a whole have been changing quite drastically in more areas than just the diet. The increase of office jobs or jobs that are more sedentary than they used to be has increased as have the stresses and responsibilities. I talked about the fact that in those regions the American standard of "beauty" has become the standard to reach for and dieting with the intent to lose weight has also exploded in those countries and I showed sources that show that dieting has a very very low chance of making a person permanently thin, and in most cases the person will gain back that weight and then some because they have messed up their metabolism, and that dieting itself has been shown to cause some of the health issues that have increased. I found sources to back this all up and showed a very good argument that while diet can play a part in the increase of some diseases there are so many other factors that would come into play with the increase of health issues.

  4. Luckily for me, this is my last class ever at Ai. I graduate in June. I am finding this class to be a thorn in my side, and am finding myself feeling completely guilty about eating a 12inch roast beef sandwich today because I have to write it down in a log. :-/ It sounds like you had it all put together and I am happy to hear it wasn't the death of you. As for me, I'm probably going to spear myself after I down this handful of marshmallows.