Food - The Enemy

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by goldilocks, Jul 9, 2013.

  1. goldilocks

    goldilocks

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    I don’t know about everybody else, but I have felt for a long time now that a lot of people have been persuaded to see food as 'the enemy'.  With so much pressure on people to look a certain way, be a certain size, not eat certain foods, I think many people just see food as fuel for their bodies rather than something to savour and lovingly enjoy. For many (and I include myself in this, although not as much anymore) their first thought is how many calories is in that? or I can't eat that!

     

    Obviously leading a healthy lifestyle and eating the right foods is important, of course it is, but it is a shame that people seem to have been programmed to instantly dismiss certain foods and food types through hype, media and fad diets. To try and reach those almost impossible heights of being as slim as the celebs we see in magazines and on TV, and then feeling disappointed or worse when that goal isn’t reached, isn’t healthy. Young impressionable teenagers battle with their self-image and perhaps do lasting damage. As someone who yo-yo dieted and had a bad relationship with food for a lot of my adult life, I changed my mind-set a few years ago and am far happier for it. I realised I am never going to be perfect, but what is perfect anyway?

     

    Food is something people should relish and enjoy, it should been seen as exciting and intriguing. It shouldn’t be seen as ‘the enemy’. I find it sad that it is still seen that way for so many /img/vbsmilies/smilies/frown.gif
     
  2. siduri

    siduri

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    Yes, it's true.  What particularly disturbs me, though, is people feeling "guilty" for eating something.  Unless you've stolen it from a starving person, i see no sense in this guilt.  If you wanted to lose weight, you could feel, i don't know, stupid, annoyed with yourself, perhaps, but guilt?  For me guilt is reserved for hurting someone. 
     
  3. butzy

    butzy

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    Goldilocks, you hit the nail on the hat when you say "but what is perfect anyway".
    A lot of models and/or people in commercials are way too skinny to be healthy.
    Enjoy your food, enjoy life, eat great homemade food with mates, have a glass of good red wine to go with it!
    Maybe just stay away from mcdonalds, although even that won't do any harm as long as it is once in a while
     
  4. goldilocks

    goldilocks

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    Exactly! Couldnt agree more.
     
  5. chefross

    chefross

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    I have been "roller Coaster" dieter my entire life.

    Last year, I decided to "eat less and move more."

    I look at food as 3,500 calories = 1 pound.

    That way, I can still enjoy foods that I like, but do so in moderation.

    To date I have lost 25 pounds with the goal of another 20 somewhere down the line.

    Skipping meals, starving oneself, eating wood, straw, and paper never worked for me.

    But, a lot of people DO look at food as the enemy, when they just need more education about it.

    It's sad to me that restaurants have to post calories on their menus, because people can not take responsibility themselves.

    I don't need a printed calorie content to know that the 16 oz. piece of meat in front of me is enough for 4 meals.
     
  6. helloitslucas

    helloitslucas

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    I don't believe the food is the "enemy" when it comes to food and health. I think it is people and their unwillingness to care for themselves. Most overweight people I have met have said the same thing that smokers, drinkers, etc. say. I can "quit" if I want. It's easy to be healthy, folks. It's easy to not "let yourself go".
     
  7. goldilocks

    goldilocks

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    Hi Chefross

    I did similar; I started running, got to a happier place and then kept it up. Before that I starved myself/did Atkins and other diets over many many years. I love food, love it, but those years were not happy ones.  A massive well done on the 25lbs so far, that is excellent! Best of luck with the next 20. You know you can do it; you've more than proved it to yourself!

    I think you're right about people needing more education. There's a lot out there if you look for it, but I maybe the average person doesn’t want to do that/can't be bothered. I quite like what Jamie Oliver did a few years ago, he went into schools in the UK (I think he may have done the same in some parts of the US too) and taught kids and their dinner lady’s/cooks about healthy nutritious but great food - specifically for school lunches. Maybe that kind of thing needs to happen more, kids need to be taught what’s good, what isn’t and how to manage a bit of both and be healthy. Perhaps they will then grow to be adults with a far better view of food, and then pass that down to their kids.

    It is a shame that so many places feel the need to add calories to their menus. That totally puts me off. As you have said, I don’t need to be told that something is high in calories /fatif it's flipping obvious! I did laugh when McDonalds started doing that. I go once in a blue moon if I'm on a long road trip and there's nothing else about, and I know exactly what I'm getting. Who goes into a McDonalds, sees the calorie count of a burger and then walks out again?! People KNOW it's high in calories! It doesnt take a genius to work that one out /img/vbsmilies/smilies/lol.gif
     
  8. goldilocks

    goldilocks

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    I don't believe food is 'the enemy' either, I love food, but I think a lot of people do see it this way in an effort to conform to what they believe society thinks they should be.

    I agree with your comment about people’s willingness to care for themselves. I also think some families who maybe have kids and not much time/or have a very low income buy ready made freezer food because it is cheap and convenient. It is cheap, I'll give you that, but it is full of disgusting stuff.  I often wonder how places like Iceland (UK freezer food shop) can sell their food for so little. It doesn't encourage people to buy and cook fresh food, which isnt helping matters.
     
  9. goldilocks

    goldilocks

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    Yes it is sad isn't it. I've been there, I have felt like that. I don't any more. I now manage what I eat and run so i can have more or les the best of both worlds.
     
  10. rat

    rat

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    I did a diet that absolutely works, it was called the "stop eating so much food diet", I lost 30 lbs in 3 months. I was amazed.
     
  11. goldilocks

    goldilocks

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    Well yes, that would work.

    This thread is turning into a diet thread and that wasnt really my intention, sorry folks!
     
  12. helloitslucas

    helloitslucas

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    To get back on track: Yes, I do view a lot of people view food as the enemy. I personally savour, enjoy and love all foods(except olives /img/vbsmilies/smilies/crazy.gif) and I also lead a very healthy lifestyle. I have never had an issue with food, but I think a lot of people view things on a calorie based system due to society/etc. Which is awful. I know people that say, "Well, this medium size bag of chips is only a third of the normal calorie intake, so why not!) when I know they could cook or I could cook them something delicious in place of it that is more satisfying.




    I completely agree! I think most people that feel guilty about eating certain foods feel guilty even BEFORE they eat the food. Which is a different thing. Ex: "I know I shouldn't eat this entire funnel cake and plate of nachos...but oh well." Dang, now I want some nachos. :p
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2013
  13. goldilocks

    goldilocks

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    Totally off topic but - I had funnel cake last time I was in the US. OH MY!!!! /img/vbsmilies/smilies/licklips.gif  I need to know how to make that!

    Yes thats a good point, I think people do feel guilty even before they eat anything.
     
  14. koukouvagia

    koukouvagia

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    I'm on the other side of this argument.  I think American have lost all control of their food intake and they didn't do it to themselves.  Food nowadays is overly processed and overly abundant and the worst food is the cheapest food.  The rise of metabolic syndrome over the past couple of decades is shocking, shocking!  Do you really think that Americans are now less able to control themselves than they did several decades ago?  Are we as a society suddenly more lazy than our ancestors?  bul****

    We are so far removed from how our ancestors ate that it's no wonder we are in such bad shape.  With the 24-hr marts and chain restaurants taking over the dining industry and potato chips getting their own aisle in the supermarket we're in a precarious state for developing bad habits.  Additives, preservatives, salt, and sugar are pervading our food supply.  High fructose corn syrup is in everything, check the labels on a regular basis and you'll start to wonder "why are they feeding me this?  I just want a can of beans, why is it full of salt?"  or "Why does my loaf of sandwich bread contain 17 ingredients?"

    We're full of bad habits as a society.  We take away gym class from our students, we give them chicken patties for lunch, we except to eat a bucket of popcorn at the movie theater.  We want our Big Gulps.  And then we get offended that a restaurant put the calorie count on our menus?  This is what we are going to raise an uproar over?  That's pathetic.  As someone who has battled my weight for a while and who takes strident measures to be healthy I take those calorie counts seriously, you want to know why?  Because they're a little reminder of how much crap is in that food.  No way am I getting an entree that boasts 1,400 calories, NO WAY!!!  It's not about being on diet, it's about being realistic about how much crap my body can handle.  How do you think chefs like Giada or Ramsay keep fit?  The eat a little of everything but not a lot of anything.  Just because I like food doesn't mean I have to eat it all the time.  It IS fuel, and you can learn how to enjoy a simple salad and savor it without having to eat more than that.  You can easily learn to relish a simple soft boiled egg with a sprinkle of fleur de sel without having to whip it into buttery french omelet.  There's a time and place for rich gourmet meals and it shouldn't be at every meal.

    The healthier I get the less I cook.  I eat mostly grilled chicken or fish, lots of salads, yogurt, hummus with raw veggies, grilled veggies, etc.  I'm a foodie so there's always time for being gourmet, but the more gourmet I eat the harder it is to control my weight.  So I leave it for special occasssions. Plain and simple.  I don't like the way I feel when I eat wheat every day.  It's not about being paleo or atkins or anything like that.  I just feel better if I eat a little rice instead or keep the pasta consumption to once a month.  Eating wheat makes me hungrier faster and then makes me reach for sugar too.  I don't know why it does that, but I can't let anyone else tell me that I'm treating food as the enemy when I avoid wheat.  I eat mostly what I want, avoid processed foods, eat my veggies first, revoked my membership of the clean-your-plate club, wear a pedometer and exercise everyday, avoid sugar at all costs except for one piece of dark chocolate every night, don't drink sodas, and yes - I look at the calorie counts on the menus.  Not because I'm stupid, but because I'm aware.
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2013
  15. helloitslucas

    helloitslucas

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    I mostly agree with you. Minus the pedometer. :p I just don't understand how humans can ever get to the point of actually NEEDING a diet. That is something that I have always researched and wondered.
     
  16. pollopicu

    pollopicu

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    I agree with this. To me eating is a lifestyle. I roll my eyes when I hear people say, I have x weeks before my diet is over. I feel like yelling at them "educate yourself and you won't ever have to go on a "diet" again!", and a lot of it is just common sense..  If people would just stop eating the obvious trash on a daily basis, like processed foods, sodas and juices, fast foods, they would immediately be on the right track. It's not so much about being thin, but about being healthy from the inside out too.

    And also if people stopped making garbage at home with pre-prepared sauces and "flavor packets" that contain HFCS, MSG, Nitrates, etc, which is known to cause even more hunger, they'd be able to see the difference. Make your own sauces from scratch. Even if you have to use a little butter and cream, your body will know the difference and will thank you.

    Sure there are days I have the grossest things like spam, but that happens like twice a year, if that. It certainly isn't a staple in our cupboards. The key is to eat fresh, as fresh as you can get, and know every single ingredient you're putting into your body :)

    Case in point, look at all I've been cooking in the What's for dinner thread....I lick my plates, sometimes have seconds, and I weigh 115 pounds. Of course I also workout, and try to get good sleep,  It really does work. I promise you.
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2013
  17. chicagoterry

    chicagoterry

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    I tend to agree with you, Koukou. Even 15 years ago when my niece from Michigan (one of the fattest states) visited me in Chicago she marvelled: "where are all the fat people?" Now they are everywhere. I am very aware of it. Can't help noticing on the bus or train when someone takes up nearly or entirely two seats.

    I, too, have had to battle weight gain, mostly due to medication. When I was actively losing (65#, about 20 of which have crept back on since I started eating semi-normally) I did view food not so much as the enemy but as a necessary "fuel." It  was a game to see how little I could get by on and I found it was a surprisingly small amount. But I totally hated my relationship to food during that period. There was no joy in it at all. 

    I'm trying to find a happy medium. I walk everywhere and have never eaten junk or fast food. I am very conscious of portion sizes. But still, there are things I love that I know I really can't eat except very, very rarely. Bread, rice and pasta are pretty much gone from my plate. So is cheese, which I adore but treat as a very special occasion food. I know about 1000 different ways to fix chicken and would not survive without access to an excellent fruit market.  My whole family has always been obese, even without eating fast food. For some people it is a constant struggle. I find it a fun challenge to make and eat good, fresh, fairly low-calorie,  healthy food every day.
     
  18. kaneohegirlinaz

    kaneohegirlinaz

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    Where we live now, food is as one said, strictly fuel, nothing fancy as they say `round these parts.  They seem to eat only because they HAVE to, not because they want to.  They seem to look upon food with disdain.  There are lots of folk that are what my BIL calls greys, people who's skin is an ashen color as a direct result of eating incorrectly.

    I look at food as a celebration of life, we should eat well, enjoy it, share it, savor it, and as butzy stated, have a glass of wine with it too!  Back home in Hawaii, a meal was communal, not only in the eating, but also in the preparing of it as well.

    (we're on a 'diet', I mean new way of looking at food, to adjust our attitudes towards food.  after moving to the mainland we went a little hog-wild on eating foods that we could not get back in Hawaii)
     
  19. koukouvagia

    koukouvagia

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    When people say things like "it's so simple" or "just eat less and move more" they are being ignorant. Obesity is a pervasive problem in our society and if you're willing to blame each individual for their lack of responsibility without taking into account the horrible state of food production then your are ill-informed. I wish it was as easy for some of us as it is for some of you. But while you are out celebrating your life with food there are others that need to slow down and say to themselves "food is not love." There are other yet who suffer disordered eating and eating disorders. I long for the simplicity of your life if you can so easily be 115 lbs. are you saying that I TOO can be 115 just by doing as you do? Where's the eye roll icon when I need it.
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2013
  20. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    Fat doesn't make one fat.  Rather, it's the lack of activity that's the real culprit.  Poor fat, for it flavors food!!!    /img/vbsmilies/smilies/peace.gif