Diets, hyenas and Doom

When you’re staring two hyenas in the face, a lot goes through your mind. This happens with a lot more intensity when you’re holding a tray with a raw fillet in it, as happened to me recently.

“Run, stand still, make a noise, how many more are there, why is the boma so far away from the kitchen and why is my brain choosing to recall scenes and songs from The Lion King right now when that won’t help me at all? Their penetrating eyes make it impossible to tell whether they want to take a bite out of me, the fillet, or both. Not an ideal situation to be in.

Luckily, I’ve learnt from the pros and so even though it’s always a little hair-raising, I don’t feel completely ignorant. For the most part, I know how to react and don’t have to spend agonising minutes figuring out what to do.


I think trying to choose which diet or detox to follow is a little like being cornered by a scary animal: trying to make sense of something you don’t quite know enough about and trying to keep an eye on all the different options. Taking a giant leap in one direction leaves you having to wait and see what happens while wondering whether you should have done something different, and hoping against hope for a miracle one-size-fits-all solution that will just solve the whole problem.

That is not an ideal situation to be in either. Food then becomes something that you are anxious about, that you can’t enjoy, that you feel overwhelmed by.

One way to deal with this is to learn the basics of nutrition – if you know what macronutrients and micronutrients are, what they do for us and how they are absorbed, you’ll feel less intimidated or taken in by diet promises. Another way is to shift your focus from weightloss to overall health and fitness – if you’re aiming to be healthy, then high-risk diets and medications should no longer be a temptation.

A variety of healthy, natural, wholesome foods will give you everything you need and with a little experimentation, you’ll learn what works for you and what doesn’t. In time, your healthier choices should become second nature; something you don’t even have to wander about or try figure out on a daily basis.

When a lodge guest asked about the commotion in the kitchen I just told him, calmly, “Oh, just some animal visitors.”

“Like a massive gecko? We have one in our room. I would throw stuff at it too if it came near my food. Probably also use a whole can of Doom.”

I decided not to tell him that there were hyenas instead of a gecko. It takes time to learn about wild animals, just like it does to learn more about healthy nutrition. But make a start – get beyond the Doom approach.


Images sourced from Pinterest. Hyena image taken by Lesley 

Comments are closed.