Tuesday, July 28, 2009

If its not one thing, its another...

When it comes to pet food nutrition, I consider myself to be quite knowledgeable. After 12 years of working in the pet specialty industry, pet food is something I do know well. However when it comes to people food, I'm not quite as well-versed. There are so many differing opinions, latest research, fads, personal preferences and facts that I can't keep up. As a consumer segment, I'm what marketing folks refer to as a "foodie"- someone who loves good food, fine dining, preparing fresh food from scratch and hosting dinner parties. I subscribe to several cooking magazines, enjoy experimenting with recipes and find that a glass of wine helps it all taste even better. Aside from being a foodie, I am also a major advocate for organic foods, including animals raised free-range, without antibiotics or growth-hormones. All that being said I tend to think I know how to "eat healthy". So why do I think I'm not well versed in human food? For the longest time I have been trying to eat more salmon to increased my intake of Omega 3's, and also consume less beef. I recently found out that farm-raised salmon is not necessarily all that beneficial at all, because they are often fed grain based flakes, which deliver fewer beneficial omega 3's and more omega 6's which are not good in high doses. Apparently the trick is to only have wild caught salmon, which consume krill and other naturally occurring things in the open sea. Problem with that is the darn mercury gets you. Or at least that's the issue with Ahi tuna anyway. Now I hear that grass-fed beef can actually be best for you anyway. I used to think that whole wheat anything is better than white bread. Now I hear than any wheat products can be bad. Apparently carbs/sugars are the source of all evil. Milk and cream are supposed to be better than Soy milk. Butter is better than margarine. Olive oil is apparently dangerous to cook on high heat. Low fat stuff isn't necessarily all that good for you if the sodium levels are too high. So that rules out just about anything processed, pre-made or things that come in a box. The one thing I do still believe in is organic foods. It stands to reason that consuming fewer chemicals and pesticides must be better for long term health. So I guess the lesson of the day is to find organic foods that are low sodium, not processed, free-range, grass-fed or wild caught. If its not one thing that will get you, its another. A psychic once told me I'd live to at least 87. If I only live to 86 because I can't lay off the occasional Klondike bar, so be it. There's no way I'm giving up pasta, pizza or chocolate either. Well that's all for today's rant. I'm going to go have some organic strawberries now.
-Rick Rockhill

14 comments:

Lois Grebowski said...

I know what you mean. Sometimes just living and breathing is hazardous to one's health. Geez!

Julie said...

Rick,
I totally agree with you! Eating healthy is all well and good, but delicious food is one of the greatest pleasures of life, and it should not be totally given up for the sake of "nutrition".

snowelf said...

Hehe!! I totally know what you mean about the "trap" of eating healthy. Fish just stresses me out. I've decided they should be for watching not eating. :)

Let's hear it for Organic Strawberries! I don't think you can go wrong with those. ;)

--snow

kenju said...

Rick, I have noticed over the years that there will be a study to refute the last study coming out very soon. Nearly every study contradicts others. My solution is to eat everything I want in moderation (sometimes I'm not so good at moderating) and hope for the best!!

bunnygirl said...

I ignore the studies and keep it simple: real foods in reasonable amounts, with "real foods" defined as "anything my great-grandmother would've recognized as food."

This means I have to do a lot of cooking, because processed foods are usually full of unpronounceables, but that's okay. I've found that my home-cooked fare tastes better and satisfies me longer than anything out of a box.

Jeni said...

There are so many reports about foods and drink stuff -each with another report that totally contradicts the other and it gets really confusing plus, very difficult to try to figure out which is likely the most accurate ne then too. I just keep eating my pasta that I love, occasionally venture off and bake some bread from scratch -not from the frozen bread loaves -and I do try to eat a somewhat balanced diet too. I can't deal with the thought of depriving myself of some of the foods I do love though -chocolate being one of those items. And yet, a while back I did read something about dark chocolate having a lot of beneficial things to it so I'll take that report as a definite truth, ya know.

Kathy said...

Following what's 'current' and good for us is like sitting at a fast-moving tennis game!!! I eat a lot of fish and according to one report I read, my mercury levels are probably high. So if I become totally insane, we'll all know why. BUT, my cholesterol levels will be healthy. :)

Dana said...

This will really blow your mind: free range chicken has as much omega 3 as wild fish, without the mercury risk. Crazy or what?!

Desert Songbird said...

I figure I take enough chemicals to help with the effects of my medical condition, so I should willingly consume fewer of them in my food. That's why years ago we switched to doing most if not all of our shopping at Trader Joe's where I get lots of yummy organic produce, and many of the foods are preservative free and free of artificial flavorings. We feel better for it, too.

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

I'm kind of in the same boat with Kenju.....They tell you one thing and then, a few years later they tell you something else...For years I really ate in a very healthy way and have taken natural supplements too, since 1961....Now? Well, I'm certainly not as good as I was, at all....But, at this point in my life, I just want to be able to eat whatever I like....Like Judy, I'm not too good about moderation where certain foods are concerned---LIKE, CHOCOLATE! (lol)

grace said...

Oh no never give up those pizza, past and chocolate. Have to treat ourselves. I rarely eat anything process or out of a box. Have you tried Buffalo meat, or Elk?

© Karelian Blonde said...

Mmmmm...food...must have some more!

lime said...

all things in moderation and with a reasonable eye on what is clearly bad for us. certainly the less something is fooled around with the better.

i have to admit i am so glad mr. lime and two of the limelets are hunters. we never buy beef as we have a good supply of venison (free range, low fat, hormone and antibiotic free ;) )

Daniel said...

If you haven't already, read Michael Pollan's "In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto". It frees you from the shackles of stressing about carbs, vitamins, Omega-6, blah blah blah. Pollan calls this unhealthy obsession "nutritionism". He sums up his whole theory with the simple quote "Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants." Trust me. It's worth the read. It's blessedly short to and I finished it in a day.

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