Eat me

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Don’t ask me how I ended up on the applied kinesiologist’s table, because frankly, I have no good excuse. But there I was, on my back with my arm in the air, and by the time I got up, I was no longer allowed to eat food.

If you have never experienced applied kinesiology, then you probably don’t understand how bad food is for you. It turns out that everything edible, which they teach you in school is what keeps your bones strong and your body medically alive, is secretly conspiring to undermine your existence.

This counterintuitive philosophy makes sense once you think about it. There’s the food pyramid, right? And pyramids are used to entomb dead pharaohs. What killed those pharaohs? Gluten, probably. This revealed code has Illuminati written all over it.

But I suspected none of that deep conspiracy when I jumped up on the table and consented to be strength-tested in the interest of needing something new to write about.

Here’s how an applied kinesiology session works. The kinesiologist takes small samples of various foods and other toxic substances and places them at the crown of my head. Then she presses against my elevated arm. If my arm remains strong and in place, then that substance is not currently harmful to my well-being. If, however, my arm goes flopsier than a tranquilized rabbit’s ear, then the substance is no bueno for me at the moment.

As representative samples of my results, here’s what I can eat: eggs, lemon juice, salad greens, cardboard, and road salt (for the electrolytes).

And here’s a representative sample of what I cannot eat: cheese, bread, Nutella, coffee, broccoli, pork, tire rubber, Chex mix, corn, soy, cigarettes, Thanksgiving dinner, honey, artificial flavors, natural flavors, peanuts, peanut butter, peanut butter M&Ms, yogurt, Styrofoam, dog food, potatoes, tap water, and lunch.

“You are a sensitive little being right now,” were the words of the kinesiologist, who you may notice remains nameless lest she take away my cardboard and road salt, too.

You may think I’m crazy for giving up my diet — any diet at all, really — but you may not have experienced your arm strength betraying you on an applied kinesiologist’s table. I don’t understand how this practice works, but I’m well aware of how my arm could not resist certain strength tests, even though I once did three reps of bicep curls in a single week.

Besides, if I am willing to believe that sticking acupuncture needles in my feet will aid my headaches, and that eating ginger will help my digestion, and that you can take the heart out of an already dead person and put it inside a barely still alive person and then keep the dead heart pumping, then I’m pretty much ready to believe anything, medically speaking.

But why? Why would I subject myself to a Jain’s diet with no actual medical need to do so? After all, I am the specimen of health. Nothing ails me that doesn’t ail everybody, you know, like sleep problems, and difficulty breathing through my nose, and some perfectly normal irregularities in my morning ablutions.

Well, it turns out that kinesiology recognizes a whole suite of low-level problems that the Western pharmacy-industrial complex wants to keep concealed from us plebes, just like they keep secret the true meaning of the food pyramid. There’s fungi, and mold, and viruses. In the name of patient confidentiality, I’ll tell you that I do not have a parasite, thank heavens, and that you should not go look up human parasites on the internet. Particularly not using an image search.

My applied kinesiologist gave me a scroll detailing all the ingredients I ought not eat, with assurances that I could eat everything again in three weeks, probably, unless I couldn’t. In three weeks, I ought to have starved out my little visitor (I told you, not a parasite!) and she would re-test me to make certain.

Now I could have decided not to go along with any of this. I could have never gone to the natural food store and bought an entirely new pantry of foods with words like “non-dairy” and “edible, we swear.” I could have continued chomping my way merrily through the world. But I decided to give this recommendation a try for two very valid reasons:

Maybe I would broaden my culinary horizons. I might learn that I genuinely like the way lemon juice tastes with road salt, or I might discover new ways of cooking eggs. This could be an adventure, if nothing else — and, at best, my health could become invincible with nothing more than some simple tweaks in my diet.

After three whole weeks, that first cup of coffee is going to be the best thing I have ever tasted in my entire life. Even if it kills me.

Zach Hively writes from Durango, Colo. He can be read and reached through http://zachhively.com and on Twitter @zachhively.

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From Zach Hively.