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The danger of the nurse potluck…

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It seems that potlucks and a general “bringing of food” is fairly common among nursing units across the nation. So when I tell you that bread and butter seem to be a staple on our break room table, you probably won’t think that’s too odd. We have a toaster and a few other kitchen items that might set us apart from the average unit, but as I’ve blogged about in the past, food is definitely a necessity, and on our unit, something that brings us all together.

So on those days when you get a call that say “potluck tomorrow,”you know you’ve got to bring your “dish,” whatever it may be, to the table. And when break time comes around and the table is set with all the amazing things everyone has brought, how do you possibly keep yourself from having one too many bites of something so scrumptious?  It’s not easy, and I have definitely not mastered this skill yet. But I am learning. Here are my top three tips for not overdoing it on those fabulous  potluck days.

1) First things first: take a smaller plate. No small plate? Use a small  bowl. No small bowl? Use a CUP! The less room you have to fill up, the less you are likely to take, and the more likely you are to realize you’re full before you can grab more!

2) Take the things you’ve never had before. If it’s something you eat every time there’s a potluck, save it for later, you know what it tastes like. Go for something different, and try a little. If you’ve tried the new stuff and still think you can handle a bit more, then go for the rest.

3) Pace yourself! Taste small samples throughout the day rather than filling your plate to the brim at lunch. You want to avoid a unit-wide food coma. Patients still need things after lunch time, you don’t want to be zoning out over your charting because you tried eating everything all at once! Treat it like samples at Costco.  Small bites.

They may be small steps, and they may not be the best weight loss or portion control advice, but it may help you from inducing a food coma on those days when things are a bit slow and everything looks delish!  Happy Eating!

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Ani Burr, RN

I'm a brand new, full-fledged, fresh-out-of-school RN! And better yet, I landed the job of my dreams working with children. I love what I do, and while everyday on the job is a new (and sometimes scary) experience, I'm taking it all in - absorbing everything I can about this amazing profession we all fell in love with.
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