As the sapphire blues of twilight grow deeper day by day, the orange flames of leaves flare against the onset of the long night and I find myself, lingering over the half-shadows in my own mind. Nostalgic for the crisp autumn air of New England I begin musing over my favorite Gothic ghost stories birthed from our romantic ancestors, when our country was young but old enough to have some wicked history.
In a moment of reverie, I was warming myself by a stone fireplace, sipping hot cider and mulling over what do all the classic creatures of horror have in common? It occurred to me that the answer is hunger. But hunger for what is the real question? And thus naturally, I, a personal trainer based in Los Angeles realized I could diversify and capitalize on a market that no one else has yet thought of, nutrition for monsters. So for the purposes of this article I will focus on the main four, vampires, Frankenstein, were-wolves and zombies.
The Vampire – studies show that a wide percentage of vampires try to solely sustain themselves on a liquid diet. Some even going to the lengths of adding chili pepper, lemon juice and a stalk of celery for flavor and purportedly to boost their metabolisms. Well no wonder they are so pale, lethargic and prone to wild and violent mood swings! Lack of carbs and sufficient protein will do that to a person. Often, one’s dietary habits are not due to physical reasons but mental. So what is it that the vampire is truly craving? I guess the answer would be life. And to further that line of thought, the underlying drive to suck out someone else’s life is really a fear of your own death. For a vampire to begin experiencing better health I would advocate supplementation of protein shakes and energy bars to balance out the mood-swings, a dosage of iron to get rid of that anemic look and a qualified therapist to address this severe mortality phobia.
Frankenstein –this creature is rarely seen eating at all, save for soup and several pints of ale. Skipping meals is proven to cause drops in serotonin levels and endorphins. Low levels of such can lead to lethargy (as exhibited by all the creature’s moaning) and depression (please see, the sad face of the reanimated for proof.) But again, I have to ask, “for what is Frankenstein truly hungering?” Like the vampire, perhaps the eating or lack thereof is triggered by emotional reasons. After further research, I have concluded that Frankenstein is hungering for love. He has a tremendous hole in his psyche due to the rejection of him by his society, his family, specifically, his father. Thus, he has turned to alcohol. And who hasn’t tried to drown their sorrows in a pint or to drown them enough to enable “beer goggles” and a one-night stand? For this client I would recommend, attempting to eat more consistently, maybe 3-4 times a day, to cut back on alcohol consumption and to register on Match.com. My advice, parents are complicated and issues may never be resolved, so focus on the things you can control like better eating habits and developing a family of your own choosing.
Were-wolves – the body-builders of the underworld. Like so many, misguided weight-lifting champions, the were-wolves ingestion of massive amounts of protein is ill conceived. While it does aid in the quick creation of muscle, any excess is simply secreted out of the body. But this dietary habit quickly becomes destructive to the kidneys and other organs. Indeed it makes me wonder, is this creature, like so many devotees of “Muscle and Fiction” on steroids? It would account for the sensitivity to light, the sudden changes in hair growth due to hormonal fluctuations as well as the sudden outbursts of rage. Furthermore, the were-wolf can never successfully have relations with the female kind, also a side effect of drug use. Unlike Frankenstein, the were-wolf has given up a desire for love from the father and hungers simply for revenge. Like so many Olympic lifters, the chemical onset of muscle mass is merely an overcompensation for the smallness one feels inside. Alas, the were-wolf is likely to not be able to overcome his addictions and will probably die a pre-mature death due to heart complications, emotional or otherwise.
Lastly, I address the zombie – the athlete of the horror world. The zombie is at the top of the food chain and like other large hunters is a very successful omnivore. They get enough protein, heme-iron (from red blood cells) and calcium (from bones;) and they eat frequent meals. I would argue however, that they don’t appear to be optimally hydrated, due to the slaver that most exhibit. Additionally, I would recommend an increase in fruits and vegetables to give the benefit of a fully rounded diet. What is intriguing and needs more study is the sudden evolutionary adaptation of the “fast” zombie. Perhaps, it is a secondary gain coming from a leaner, less fatty meat selection. I must comment though that the zombie has a relentless, hunger for “more.” Like so many athletic superstars, after achieving their peak, they just don’t know how to retire gracefully. Their negative attitude and willful antics simply leave everyone with a bad taste in their mouths. The hunger for “more,” this greediness just leads to massive destruction and chaos on relationships.
As I slip back into my reverie, and the blue twilight fades to the black of a Pookah’s coat, I leave you to wonder, “Life, love, approval, revenge, anarchy…or maybe just a taffy apple or some candy? For what do you truly hunger?”
* I wrote this article for the Halloween edition of an online publication called, “Magic Cat Press Spookfest 2011.” And have reposted it here in honor of Halloween 2013!