The Last Straw, Man

red-purple-foods

First, we weren’t supposed to eat butter. Eat mo margarine! Now we know that was bad advice. Some say eat margarine that has no trans fats. Others say eat butter. Still others say only butter from grass-fed cows. Ahhhh. What do we put on toast?

Well, nothing, as it turns out, because bread is not a good thing to eat either. Nope. We’ve only been growing wheat for 10,000 years, so our bodies are not designed to process grains properly. And there’s also the problem of bleaching flour, which makes our bread and pasta so nice and white. Down with white foods! Down with carbs!

Because carbs are the bad guys. Proteins are our friends. Fats are apparently our friends, even though we used to think they weren’t. But only the right fats. Not all fats. Not the real tasty ones. The ones in potato chips and twinkies. Those fats are still not our friends.

Along the way, no one has eschewed vegetables. Still allowed to eat vegetables. Help yourself to all the beets, broccoli, and onions you want. Be careful of the carrots, because sugar. Watch out for the non-organic vegetables. And for heaven’s sake, NO CORN because GMO.

And then there’s high-fructose corn syrup. Although the Corn Refiners Association has an entire advertising campaign touting HFCS’s “natural” quality, and that it’s “fine in moderation just like sugar,” there are plenty of other experts who mention the problems associated with HFCS, not the least of which is that most, if not all, foods which contain this product are not foods which will nourish you in the slightest. Empty calories, I think they’re called.

Meat! Meat bad. Too much fat, too much cholesterol, too many antibiotics, too much growth hormone, bad conditions for the animals as they are grown and slaughtered. No mo meat! OK, we’ll all be vegetarians. Oh, oops, there are some amino acids that you can only get in meat. Ok, then, meat is ok, but only grass-fed meat, and only if you are training your body to use fat for fuel.

A sample dinner when I was growing up: beef stroganoff, rice, green beans, dinner rolls, celery sticks stuffed with cream cheese. Now if I’m going to follow all the “rules,” that dinner becomes: grass-fed beef with organic mushrooms and organic beef broth, no rice, organic green beans, no rolls, and organic celery stuffed with organic cream cheese from grass-fed cows. And you wonder why I don’t want to cook.

But the final straw. THE FINAL STRAW. The final straw is that now fruit is frowned upon because it has a high sugar content and can make you fat.

Some of the most refreshing, satisfying snacks I have ever had consist of fruit. Frozen grapes, frozen cherries, fresh peaches, an apple a day keeping the doctor away, strawberries and blackberries picked fresh off the plant. And now I’m not supposed to eat any fruit either? Or just eat it before noon?

Is the stress about what’s good for us to eat making us crazy? Burger offerings that include six or eight foods that are normally eaten alone — bleu cheese, bacon, avocado, a fried egg, sautéed onions, fried foods? Sandwiches which feature donuts as the “bread.” French fries dipped in whipped cream? Are we insane?

So what do? I have no idea. Too much stress to eat. No more eating. That’s a good idea. That way, I won’t eat anything that’s bad for me. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could just stop eating? Like the alcoholic can do when she wants to stop using alcohol? Just stay away from it altogether. But the eater must eat to live. It’s a dilemma, for sure.

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