Food for More than Flavor

November 29, 2011 § 4 Comments

Food: any nourishing substance that is eaten, drunk, or otherwise taken into the body to sustain life, a particular kind of solid nourishment, whatever supplies nourishment to organisms. 

You knew that right? Well of course, after all, you eat food everyday. But have to stopped to think of why you eat?

Is it to be nourished, to experience pleasure, to get energy, or to heal yourself? Or maybe because you tasted a flavor that you’d love to taste again, or because a certain flavor stimulates a fond memory, or maybe because you saw a commercial on TV this morning that instigated a craving for a particular flavor – or maybe because you are addicted to certain flavors.

What did you eat today anyway? Did you have to unwrap it, tear open a box, twist a cap off of it, or cut through a can to get to it? And if it did come in a package, did it contain natural or artificial flavoring? Chances are, it did.

By now I’m sure you can guess where I’m going with this, but before you tune me out, listen. We have completely lost touch with integral food and it’s not necessarily our fault. Every day, lobbyists, chemists, lawyers, politicians, and many others work to create new foodstuffs, get you to try them, then get you hooked. If you don’t believe me, just ask Morely Safer, the host of 60 minutes. 60 minutes: The Flavorists. This is a quick video you need to watch.

It just seems backwards – if you’re craving the an orange (or orange flavor), chances are your body needs the vitamin c, the beta carotene or the folic acid that is in that orange, so if you only get the orange flavor, you’re missing out on being nourished. Not to mention the fact that (I’m sorry for sounding like conspiracy theorist) these openly admit they want you addicted. And if you’re one of the millions who think eating Special K for breakfast in stead of an egg… go back and compare the ingredients on the Special K box to those on an egg.

Eggs should have no other ingredients aside from whatever the hens ate (unless you're referring to carton eggs, but let's not go there).

And if that’s not bad enough, the natural and artificial chemicals in the food, plus the packaging of  the foodstuffs themselves may be contributing to obesity within our population.  New research by Bruce Blumberg at UCI calls these endocrine disruptors obesogens. Obesogens are compounds that disrupt the normal function of metabolic hormones – and boy are they everywhere; just think, plastic water bottles, frozen food containers, non-stick pans, cans, etc.

Bottom line: Keep yourself educated & eat food, real food.

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