wishing on a wishbone

We asked six dietitians for their wishes

Friends, Romans, Countrymen, lend me your ears…it’s time to answer some questions about wishbones. Well, Julius Caesar probably didn’t say that; but as it turns out, the Romans believed that chicken bones held the power of good fortune. The wishbone, a bone that connects the two collarbones of a bird, is actually called the furcula, but calling it that after a few glasses of wine might end up not so kid-friendly.

So what is the tradition surrounding the wishbone? When two people pull it apart, the one who gets the longest piece gets a wish granted. Some people have rules and traditions, and some people just pull away at the wishbone and hope for the best. Is there any strategy to winning the wishbone war? Some will say yes.

One thing is critical, the bone must be dry. This means using the oven to crisp it up or waiting from Thanksgiving until Christmas to make the wishes. The secret is to grab the thicker side of the wishbone with your dominant hand. The challenge for a large family is deciding who gets to participate for the holiday wish. Rock, paper, scissors seems to be the best way.

I asked some of my registered dietitian friends what they would wish for this year if they wished on a wishbone. Here’s what they had to say:

  • I wish peanut butter M&Ms had all the benefits of vegetables while still tasting like candy. Carrie Manning, RDN
  • I wish for ice cream to be as nutritious as fruits and vegetables. Nicole Engelbart, MS, RD, LMNT, CLC
  • I wish that sitting on the couch watching my favorite TV show was as good for my health as working out. Bobbi Beat, RD, LMNT, CLC
  • I wish all chocolate had the power to improve risk factors for disease by lowering LDL, increasing HDL, and improving insulin sensitivity, not just the 70% or more dark chocolate. Cathy Einspar, RD, LMNT, CLC
  • I wish black coffee tasted as good as a full vanilla latte. Lesley Hammerschmidt, RD, IBCLC
  • I wish health and happiness for family and friends. Lori Manning, RDN, LD
  • We wish that sucrose intolerance would be recognized by more dietitians and physicians.

What will you wish for this year if you’re the lucky wishbone “puller?”