Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Food is not for eating....

If you have toddlers, you may be familiar with the books "Teeth Are Not For Biting" and "Hands Are Not For Hitting." We own the teeth book and have read it so many times to our kids that Bil and I have it memorized. Not an astounding accomplishment, with all its repetitions, but really not bad for someone like me, who could not for the life of me remember my phone number last year when I was opening up a bank account for Char (seriously, they have the wrong number on record, because of my unexplainable memory loss). Anyway, I digress.

OK, sorry, I have one more digression. I think the book "Teeth Are Not For Biting" is really pretty misleading. I mean teeth really ARE for biting, aren't they? Every time I read it, I feel dishonest, but I suppose for the purpose of indoctrinating our kids I will have to deal with it. I just keep waiting for the day when one of them says, "Yeah, right, mom. Whatever. What else are you supposed to do with teeth except bite?!?!" I know they will someday, because they are much cleverer than I am, that's for sure.

Alright, the point of this blog is that I had an idea awhile back of writing a companion book called, "Food is Not For Eating." The idea came after searching the Internet for low-cal dessert recipes. I found a glut of supposedly healthy recipes that were filled with all kinds of chemicals, including artificial colors and sweeteners. In fact, on the Weight Watchers website people give their tips for losing weight and it amazes me how many of them regularly consume what I call "fake" food. You know, like fake butter, fake sugar, etc. I even read an article in some fitness magazine in which the writer decided to not eat any "fake" diet food for a period of time. Apparently, she had been entirely subsisting on diet sodas, diet protein bars, etc. and rarely eating anything that even closely resembled food. She actually enjoyed the break from diet foods and did not gain any weight as she had feared.

Now, it's not that I have anything against processed foods. I mean, consume my fair share of Diet Coke and I Can't Believe It's Not Butter, but I wonder about diet programs that purport to be healthy, but still promote eating artificial sweeteners, colors, etc. (Don't even get me started on artificial colors. They are in EVERYTHING, which makes it difficult for me because red food coloring can give me migraines. Plus, people are claiming that it makes some kids more hyperactive, etc. There is red food coloring in just about everything, including chocolate pudding. Why, why, why would they need red coloring in pudding??? Riddle me that!)

OK, I will get off my soapbox. It is just something I have been thinking about lately. I wonder, too, if indulging in all these chemicals actually sabotages my weight loss efforts. Some researchers think so. Apparently, it makes us crave more. More sugar, more salt, more everything. It makes me rethink that Diet Coke I was craving....

1 comment:

William said...


Add to the list "Food is not for Tasting."

If there's one thing I love about food, it's that it tastes good, and I abhor drinking diet soda...Now that regular soda is all 99% High Fructose Corn Syrup and not even sugar, I'm starting even eschew my old favorite standby ROOT BEER.

Will all American food marketters eventually get shepherded into the fold of FAKE? It appears that Jone's Soda is the last company standing up for us anti-FAKErs.

Food-lite, either for reasons of cost savings, fear of real ingredients like FAT (Omigosh!) SUGAR (Heavens!), overall blandness for the sake of being inoffensive-- I'm sick of it! Give me the real thing, REAL butter, REAL sugar, REAL flour, and REAL ingredients! Attractive food dyes are not a substitute. Ingredients that are 'derived from REAL ingredients' are not a substitute. (I mean, everything from hair dye to composted dog poop could potentially fall under that category.)

If we the residents of this country could just get over our food fears and hangups, we would be much more satisfied at the dinner table, and probably not be the fattest country in the world, eating empty calories that were not designed to satisfy hunger, only corporate pockets.

If the food companies wanted me to be healthy, they would be using real ingredients, the ones that have kept our ancestors alive all these generations: Whole Wheat and Grain, Organic Honey, Whole Dairy Products, Fresh Fruits and Vegetables (grown locally, seasonally, and not flown in on a jet plane from Florida).

Can I get an amen?