Archive for philosophy

Day 4 – food as more than fuel

Posted in food with tags , , , , , , on February 3, 2012 by healthordeath

Mostly a check-in post here. This is a topic I will likely be revisiting several times.

The physical withdrawal symptoms are setting in. The scariest was during my workout when my legs decided to start shaking mid-set of a clean and press. Unfortunately, this is likely just the first of many such incidences, and I expect it to get worse before it gets better. Luckily for me, the great thing about a big workout is the post-workout meal. Tonight, it was two of my favorite foods: bacon-wrapped shrimp and sweet potato (with a cocoa cinnamon sauce). It got me thinking about food.

Far too often these days I see people who don’t care about food. While I certainly don’t expect everyone to be a foodie or amateur chef, we are, quite literally, what we shovel down our gullets. With the relatively recent rise in a large number of diseases (obesity, diabetes, celiac, autoimmune, etc.), I can’t help but wonder if this is correlated at all with the availability of convenience foods. When I say convenience foods, I am not just talking about the obvious donuts-from-a-gas-station or fast food items that everyone agrees are bad for you, I am also talking about the lean cuisines, canned soups, deli meats, super market breads, and any “healthy” substitution food.

Ingredients: BLANCHED ENRICHED PASTA (WATER, ENRICHED SEMOLINA (SEMOLINA, NIACIN, FERROUS SULFATE, THIAMIN MONONITRATE, RIBOFLAVIN, FOLIC ACID)), COOKED CHICKEN TENDERLOIN (CHICKEN TENDERLOINS, WATER, SEASONING (MODIFIED CORN STARCH, SUGAR, POTASSIUM CHLORIDE, YEAST EXTRACT, DEXTROSE, SPICE, ONION POWDER, GARLIC POWDER, PAPRIKA), SOYBEAN OIL, ISOLATED SOY PROTEIN, SALT, SODIUM PHOSPHATES), SKIM MILK, GREEN BEANS, TOMATOES, WATER, ROASTED SWEET CORN, CHILE PEPPERS, BLACK BEANS ((WATER, BLACK BEANS), SALT), CHEDDAR CHEESE (MILK, CHEESE CULTURE, SALT, ENZYMES, ANNATTO COLOR), 2% OR LESS OF CHEDDAR CLUB CHEESE (CHEDDAR CHEESE (CULTURED MILK, SALT, ENZYMES), WATER, SALT, ANNATTO COLOR), MODIFIED CORNSTARCH, SOYBEAN OIL, SALT, BLEACHED WHEAT FLOUR, RICE STARCH, SPICES, POTASSIUM CHLORIDE, DEHYDRATED GARLIC, LACTIC ACID, BLUE CHEESE (PASTEURIZED MILK, CHEESE CULTURES, SALT, ENZYMES), CHEDDAR CHEESE (PASTEURIZED MILK, CHEESE CULTURES, SALT, ENZYMES), GRANULAR CHEESE (PASTEURIZED MILK, CHEESE CULTURES, SALT, ENZYMES), SEMISOFT CHEESE (PASTEURIZED MILK, CHEESE CULTURES, SALT, ENZYMES), YEAST EXTRACT, CALCIUM LACTATE, CULTURED WHEY, XANTHAN GUM, WHEY, ANNATTO COLOR, BUTTER, CITRIC ACID, MILK PROTEIN CONCENTRATE, NATURAL FLAVOR, SODIUM PHOSPHATE

A couple decades ago this stuff didn’t exist. Families had to cook their meals, and sitting down to dinner meant eating food that someone took time and care to prepare. This is, as I said above, a topic I’ll delve into more later, but for now I encourage everyone to take a step back from their prepackaged whatever and cook something real.

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Day 2 – I am not my condition, and neither are you

Posted in about, musings with tags , , , , , , , on February 1, 2012 by healthordeath

As I mentioned in my first post, I am an alcoholic, and while that term is what I am, it is not who I am. I see myself as a person with an illness, something that I need to fix. Traditionally, they say that alcoholism is for life – that you never really recover – and that you will fight it for the rest of your life.

I don’t accept that.

If I resign myself to that mantra, I may as well go drink myself to death right now because I will be accepting that I am going to fight myself every day.  I don’t want to live like that. I was thinking about this today and it seems more and more like people with conditions are routinely told that all they can do is cope and take medications.

Diabetic? No hope there, just take insulin. Never mind changing your diet, there is no way you are going to get better.

MS? None here. Take these pills as you slowly degenerate, since you can’t fix this one either.

Ulcerative Colitis? Just treat the symptoms with steroids. Don’t bother fixing the underlying problem.

Fibromyalgia? Celiac? How many other conditions are really “permanent”? While alcoholism is different from these conditions, I still have to think that if I can treat the underlying reason I drank that the term “recovered alcoholic” may someday be what I am. As for that underlying reason, thats a topic I’ll have to unpack.