Food, Huh! What Is It Good For?

foodOkay, you caught me. I’m avoiding politics. Just for a bit. I’m tired of reporting on idiots. Tired up to the tippy-top of my noggin with fools and dopes, and all manner of misanthropes who permeate our political landscape. The last was the isolated butt-stupid “law enforcement” personnel across the country who have determined that “they will not enforce unconstitutional gun laws”. These missing-links to humanity are nothing but assholes with inverted mouths. To suggest that they haven’t thought this through would be to suggest that they can think in the first place.

So.

What ya wanna talk about today?

Food? I thought so.

I been reading about food lately. I read The China Study, and now I’m reading, Healthy at Every Size. I won’t bore you with long drawn out descriptions except to say that the first does an excellent job of proving that for health reasons, a plant-based diet is probably the very best any person could choose. Of course only a tiny segment of the population is or ever will be prepared to never eat a hamburger, a glorious slice of Vermont Cheddar, or a gnaw upon a spicy rib bone. The second, fairly echoes my conclusion but goes ever so much further stating once and for all, that diets don’t work, except again for a tiny segment of the population.

I tend to agree with both. I cannot do a plant-based diet. I’m not that tiny segment. I have tried every manner of diet, and been successful on most all. Until I had lost the weight and tried to eat NORMALLY again. I do mean normally too. I put the weight back on faster than a nearing 40-year-old says “I do”, and as then some. It’s all quite predictable, for diets interfere with the bodies own dynamics, and as soon as the diet is done, the body starts to repair the damage at it sees things. It does little good by the by to try to tell it otherwise. It has a mind of its own.

You see this has to do with systems that are evolutionarily developed over millions of years to care for the body (itself) when the brain sitting atop all this mass of flesh was not smart enough to make the right decisions. A whole mass of interconnected “stuff” in our brains, bloodstreams, and so forth released chemicals, slowed them down, pushed them about, all to regulate what we ate and when. For a lot of millions of years, we did just fine.

Then the mirror was developed. And we saw that fat butt, and that round tummy, and well we became insane. We started to artificially alter our size. And our inborn systems have been rebelling ever since. You diet, the brain says, “we’re starving–quick slow systems down!” So our metabolisms fall making our calorie output slower than normal. We become hungrier, and  the normal level of our satiety is thrown off kilter. So when we stop starving ourselves, we eat more, more often.

Then the food industry comes into play. They want to make money. They don’t care about our natural mechanisms for maintaining a healthy body. They use high fructose corn syrup because it is cheap. It goes into everything now. It messes up the “satiety” bells and whistles. So we eat more and more often. They use all kinds of additives that affect the proper release of various chemicals and so forth into our bloodstream that help us to decide what to eat and when. They mess it up. So we eat Cheetos, instead of an apple.

The government is complicit. They subsidize farmers who grow corn. It stays cheap so it can be the favored supplier of sweeteners. In Europe, by the by, you can hardly find soda pop that uses HFCS (high fructose corn syrup), because it’s BANNED as UNHEALTHY. Here you can’t find any without it. It’s in bread and almost all boxed and pre-made foods.

The government promotes the use of milk, although studies suggest it plays a part in breast and prostate cancer, onset juvenile diabetes, and cant’ be digested properly by tons of people. There are no good studies that say its a good way to avoid osteoporosis either.

Fast food places supersize foods because the french fries are so damn cheap that they can double the size at about only 40% of the cost. And over time, the consumer becomes used to the larger size, and considers it the “normal” portion. The more we eat, the more we crave it. We mess up our internal systems. Go into a McDonald’s and ask for a “small” fry. They will not have a clue what you are talking about. There is no such thing as “small” any more.

We don’t eat because we are hungry. And we don’t eat what our body needs, we eat what our drunken brains have been taught to crave. We eat because it is noon, and we eat a salad because we want to be “good” until evening when we are starved and we devour a bag of chips and a twenty-ounce coke.

Now, I’m not trying to talk you into anything here. But these two books are worth your attention before you start yet another weight-loss scheme. If only to alert you that you can’t depend on the government to keep you safe, nor frankly even a lot of the various medical associations. You cannot believe how many of the things like Pediatric Doctors Associations (and similar things) are heavily contributed to by all the “bad” food makers to get a nod. These associations have a maddeningly bad habit of altering their “advice” to include “reasonable” portions of soda, chocolate, and all the other things we know are not real food in return for those hefty “donations”.

I’m simply trying to make better food choices, and exercise because I find it fun, and because it makes me feel better. I’m trying to make most of my diet from real foods, and meals created from whole ingredients.  Being healthy is, at my age, increasingly much more important than whether I can pop my buns into a pair of sexy jeans. Way more.

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13 comments on “Food, Huh! What Is It Good For?

  1. You are exactly correct. As a result of all the lousy additives they put in so much food, I prefer to bake my own bread, grow my own vegetables, and even brew my own beer!

  2. The problem is not that “diets interfere with the bodies own dynamics”…even if they do. The problem is that eating “NORMALLY” is not healthy and puts weight on your body. Your body will settle out at your normal weight based on the foods you normally eat. For me that is 230 pounds with my old meat and dairy diet and 175 pounds with my current plant-based diet. The difference is very clear and I still eat until I am full.

    • Sherry says:

      Well, as a veteran of dozens of diets, I know that the studies prove very clearly that diets that restrict calories result in a determination on the body’s part to reclaim lost ground. So once the diet is over, you gain weight eating normal amounts of food. By the time the body returns to a normal metabolism, you have regained most or all, and then some. That is what the literature rather conclusively proves, and what the experience of most every dieter proves as well. You are eating a diet that very few people can do frankly. I certainly can’t. Everybody has a natural set point, the right weight for them. It’s a genetic thing as far as I can see. Trying to mess with it only leads to heartache and destructive behavior that is not healthy at all. I agree that your diet is the most healthy, it’s just that few can give up so much. Most of us must be content to make changes in small increments and eat the best food we can, and try to return to what is called unrestricted eating–eating when and what the body tells you to. It most assuredly will be more fruits and vegetables and less of the fake food. Thanks for sharing your experience. !END

  3. lbwoodgate says:

    You might want to suggest a viewing of the documentary “Forks & Knives” to supplement the information on plant-based diets. It’s got me thinking about eliminating meats and dairy.

    • Sherry says:

      They also have a cookbook out too, that I’m told has been fixed of its many recipe errors. I can’t give up meat and cheese I’m afraid, but I have no issue with reducing their amounts signifcantly and making better food choices generally. !END

      • Of course you can give up meat and cheese. You are CHOOSING to eat them. The first step is to take responsibility for what you eat.

        • Sherry says:

          You are actually repeating a lot of what is debunked in the book. I think you might look at it. The science is actually pretty darn compelling. !END

          • What book? The China Study? I’ve read it. It is an excellent book and one of the main driving forces behind me becoming a vegan. I am not sure what debunked stuff you are referring to.
            .

  4. Gunta says:

    I listened to Michael Pollan’s book: “In Defense of Food” during my recent drive. Another excellent book on pretty much the same theme. I’ve never been particularly fond of meat as a kid, so have never had a problem “giving it up”. I can’t help but wonder if it might have been because the family cooked meat to shoe leather. ;)

    • Sherry says:

      YOu are lucky! I think I would love not to have eat meat but at my age, I’m way too far gone to give it up now. It’s too bad more parents don’t know about about food so they could start their kids off on the right foot. I am not a food Nazi or anything, and when kids are older and want to try meat, that’s fine. but a more plant based diet is certainly the best I admit. I am cutting back and including a lot more plant and fruit into my diet. And I do feel better already I think. !END

  5. Gunta says:

    I’ve never been a food Nazi either. Used to cook meat dishes for hubby until he started having heart problems. Then it was easier to nudge him in the direction of less meat, though it was never totally eliminated. These days, I belong to a CSA for about 28 weeks out of the year with fresh, delicious produce delivered straight from the farm to a nearby pickup site. Winter is a little tougher to get by, but then there’s still some good seafood left to be had. The annoying thing about wonderful fishy food is that they’ve started commercializing shrimp and salmon and other fish….. feeding them grains instead of the plankton and other green sorts of stuff that was their normal diet…. our commercial food industry is even ruining my favorite shellfish (shrimp) where they now have to add dye to give it the expected pink coloring and the grains fed to the shrimp give them a mushy texture. Ugh! As Pollan says in his book; not only are you what you eat, but you’re also what your food eats… of something like that! ;)

    You may have read or heard of Pollan’s “Omnivore’s Dilemma”…. the follow up was “In Defense of Food” and I highly recommend it.

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