In our house, I am the one that is responsible for making lunches and cooking dinner. I also make breakfast on the weekends for us both. I enjoy almost every moment that I spend in the kitchen preparing food. I guess the only times that I do not enjoy being there is when a recipe has gone horribly wrong or I have poorly prepared myself for the cooking at hand. Dirty dishes also play a major role in my frustration in the kitchen but that is more of a problem with discipline that I have. Thankfully, I have married a wonderful woman who is patient with me as I relearn some of my tidy-ness habits. I am getting better, though she may argue differently. However, this is not the meat of my post today.
It occurred to me that I have a great responsibility in the kitchen being the one who prepares our food. It is up to me to make sure that my family (which as of now only consists of my wife and me, but may someday soon grow) is fed with delicious food that is as healthy as possible. By serving the right types of food, I ensure that my family stays healthy. This is not a responsibility to be taken lightly.
Now I make no claims to be a great cook or even particularly knowledgeable on what exactly consists of a healthy, nutritious meal. I do know that we don’t require an awful lot of meat (3 oz. or so, about the size of your palm) if any at all. What is important here is protein. We can get protein in foods other than meat though it is much easier, and tastier if I do say, to get it from a piece of flesh. I also know that vegetables are the most important food that any person could ever eat, especially dark green vegetables. Then there are the carbohydrates. Things like breads, potatoes, rices and such. This area is a little confusing to me because I believe that there has been too much concern over carbs in general and not the type of carbs. From what I understand, we need carbs. How much? I’m not sure. A search on the internet will tell you that you that you might want to make up half of your daily caloric needs with carbohydrates. Another search may give you an answer of a fraction of that. I think that the amount of carb intake is up to you based on your nutritional needs. What is important is that those carbs come from natural sources. By natural, I mean from fruits, whole grain bread, cereals, pastas. Natural sources. Avoid processed food.
With all of the confusion surrounding our diet, I am glad that I saw an interview with a guy named Michael Pollan and read an article that he wrote for the New York Times Magazine. He says: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” Simple. It makes sense and helps to keep things straight.
I have been trying to follow this rule. It is hard. I love fried food. I love chips. I love salty snacks. I love fake food. But now, I think that I understand the responsibility that I have. If I am going to have a family, a healthy, happy family and if I want to be able to spend many happy years with them, I need to follow this simple rule and share it with them. Teach it to them.
That’s why it is especially hard to see this:
I am both disgusted and intrigued by it. Mostly disgusted. Perhaps I have turned a corner.
Now I have to go plan dinner. Where did I put the donuts? 🙂
After writing this post I found this video of Michael Pollan’s talk at Google regarding his book “The Omnivore’s Dilemma”. As well he mentions his other book “In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto” (Both of which I would like for Christmas if anyone thinks that I deserve a gift this year).
I highlty reccommend taking the hour and watching the video. It will make you think.