Feb 5, 2010

what should we be eating?

i have been doing some thinking lately, always dangerous. and while i try to avoid politics like the plague, as i once lived in washington d.c. for 4 years as a younger adult type person which truly cured me of ever wanting to know anything about the internal or external machinations of the political conundrum that is america today. but this personal weakness aside, one bit of politics that is unavoidable to me is the politics of food.

everyday we choose what to eat. and what should we be eating? according to food journalist/philosopher micheal pollan, "not too much, mostly plants." and "if it is a plant, eat it; if it was made in a plant, don't." what if there was a diet that would promote longevity, protect from cancer and heart disease, all the while going a long way to save the planet from pollution and global warming and acidic oceans at the same time, would you follow it? apparently such a regimen exists.

recently in the UK some vegetarian celebrities have begun promoting a concept called meat-free mondays, promoting vegetarianism for one day a week to everyone, and highlighting the true cost of a meat-heavy diet in really quite shocking terms.

i do think we need to change our habits. i do think the manufacture of food packaged goods and the resulting international marketing mayhem encouraging us all to eat more and more food-like substances without regard to our health and welfare is worth railing against. we should thoughtfully take control of our instincts toward a more wholesome diet. we must sacrifice some convenience now for some convenience later (as we and our planet age). as responsible humans, we should endeavor to improve ourselves and our planet by more thoughtful choices, shouldn't we? i do not think we should enjoy our food any less, in fact, i propose we enjoy it more.

what can i do, what can you do, what can anyone do? well. for starters, lets think about what that would entail.

my local hospital recently sent me a list of foods i should be eating:
kiwi fruit
collard greens
sweet potatoes

prevention magazine has another list:
greek yogurt
fat free milk
lean beef
edamame and tofu
olive oil
sweet potatoes
red peppers
asian pears
dark chocolate

and then the new york times has another list:
swiss chard
pomegranate juice
dried plums
pumpkin seeds
frozen blueberries
canned pumpkin

well there you go. a list of foods we should probably all add into our daily rotation. now i firmly believe that nutrition science and preventative medicine really can't tell us what each of need to eat more and less of based on our genetics, environment, and individual personal health history, but i imagine one day they will.

in the meantime, i am going to go out of my way and try to incorporate each of these foods into a few new recipes for our healthful enjoyment. i will not sacrifice the delicious enjoyment part. because i love food. food is wonderful. food is an art form. and most of all, food can be enjoyed as a delightful repast each day, ideally shared with family and friends. and so this will be where i attempt to figure out how to really find the intersection of taste, benefit, and even greater enjoyment of our daily food, in a new section of cup and table. stay tuned for the unveiling.

happy weekend to you. big snow predicted here, but we have lots of nice weekend plans, so i hope not too much snow. xo, g


  1. blueberries, sweet potatoes and sardines are listed on more than one list, so i'm taking that as a cue that they're extra good for us!

  2. you are quite right katie, thanks for noticing!

  3. sicilian tubetti with sardines is one of the v. best ways and tastiest to consume those sardines. (super easy too to make with what you have in the frig already) coudn't recommend it more. i don't think caffee bondi is still there on 19th st. in nyc to try it but that was my first experience with it. (oh! perciatelli they call it L-O-O-O-VE!)

  4. I have been thinking about this too. Something I am not sure about is if I am getting enough protein... I see lots of bean dishes in my future : )