Some Weekend Reads: Obesity, Hunger, and Food Supply

An old Saturday entry posted a news link about childhood obesity. This was one of the comments:

I feel really strongly about childhood obesity! Personally, I think two things are wrong here: Firstly, the price of quality food vs. processed food, is WAY out of whack! There is something wrong with a country that can provide food (in schools, grocery stores, fast food joints, etc.) for cheaper than healthy ingredients. Secondly, parents need to be educated, and/or care more about what they put in their children's mouths. Lower income families are the most underprivileged here, because they can't afford fresh food, or they don't have the time to prepare it. I'm not really sure what the solution for that is. I certainly know that it doesn't help when my church tells me that the local food pantries are in need of "jello and kool-aid". Again, I get that they need to feel the masses for cheap, but the demographic they're feeding is the most in trouble, in my opinion. Looking forward to more about this :) 

The timing of this response was really interesting to me as our church had the children do a mission project at VBS this same week. The children made sandwiches for the food pantries: white bread, bologna, and processed cheese. I really struggled with this. As a church, we were able to feed way more people by buying these ingredients. As a society, we're slowly killing ourselves.

Another friend, without prompting, sent me a link to the 30 Project. I'm trying to decide if this is a sign! I am going to do a little more research about it, and then I hope to sign up to attend a dinner of 30!

Once my daughter starts school, I'm hoping to spend more time researching this topic. In the meantime, here's a few articles I found about the topic:

California Independent Voter Network
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Food Research and Action Center

And here's my unsolicited opinion: Food used to be what sustained us. Now it's what we put in our bodies to keep up with our lives. Instead of cooking as a family and extended family for a two hour meal together, we grab pre-cooked stuff and put it on the table. We eat in our cars, in front of our tvs, on the streets, at our desks, etc. We've taken away the value of food. Instead of nourishing our bodies, we're looking at scientific evidence telling us kale gives us this, mangos help us this way, and coconut cures this. Food manufacturers have jumped on this and market to us what to buy. They make it have fancy packaging, advertise it to our kids, and tell us it will cure us of all our ailments. Remember, if you're food's being marketed, someone's trying to make money on it, and you're getting scammed. Healthy food comes from the earth, not the manufacturing plant. Obesity started rising significantly when our nation starting eating out of the manufacturing plant. Please be conscious of how often you and your children are eating something that's been manufactured (canned soups, crackers, breads, chips, cereals, jellies, jello, dips, drinks, etc). Write it down. How much of what you eat is manufactured? How much is pure?

Here's a quick, pure way for some broccoli:
Throw frozen broccoli in a bowl and put it in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time. Stir between cycles. Cook until heated through all the way. Put a little salt and pepper on top and stir. If your kids won't eat it this way, take some freshly grated parmesan and have them sprinkle it on top to make snow covered trees. 

No comments: