Food - The Enemy

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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.
My life is anything but simple. And yes, perhaps you can be 115-120, if you so choose to, if you ate the same food items, prepared in the same manner, same potions perhaps you can be healthier version of you. Have you tried exactly that? I don't think so, since you posted 10 minutes after I did... I find it interesting you're ready to dismiss it as a healthy alternative without having even tried it first.

Never did I post that it was "simple" to start a food lifestyle journey. Any journey, or new venture is very difficult to begin, indeed. If it were easy, then everyone would be doing it, and there would be no need to discuss such topics. As far as the "horrible state of food production" well... no one is shoving fistful of those foods down anyone's throat. 

I'm honestly kinda tired of hearing about "eating disorders" and using that as an excuse.. I'm not saying you KK, really I am not, because I have no idea who you are, I just mean in general. What does food disorder mean? that people love food and can't stop eating it? well I love food too! obviously If I'm in the food business, and would love to sit on the couch eating crap all day, or stroll music festivals eating fried treats, and ice cream, but my common sense tells me I shouldn't do that if I don't want to gain too much weight and become obese and unhealthy. A lack of discipline does not a food addict make.

It pains me to walk away from my favorite foods sometimes, but it's either that, or I can cry later and begin labeling myself as obese with a food disorder because it's much easier that way. You can't have it all, not unless you change the kinds of foods you eat, and how they are prepared. People don't become fat with fresh healthy intelligently prepared meats, and produce. Not unless they have a severe diagnosed thyroid problem, which is not what we're discussing here.

I think there's a misconception that people who watch what they eat don't sometimes suffer for their choices, and people who are obese with "FD" don't give credit that some of us are disciplined enough to resist temptation.

I often notice people who have weight issues get rather defensive about this topic because they are more interested in being a sophist on the topic than looking at the facts that are as clear as day and really try to help themselves. They are usually more interested in making excuses and self-diagnosing themselves with "disorders" than making a true and honest commitment in correcting these issues.
 
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Food is not he enemy. What people do with food can be be detrimental.

Food is nourishment. It is vital to our survival, but at the same time it so much more than that.

[size=-1]"There is communion of more than our bodies when bread is broken and wine drunk.[/size]"[size=-1] MARY FRANCES KENNEDY FISHER, Conversations with M. F. K. Fisher[/size]

Eating and cuisine should be an act of nurturing.

Why on earth, if I love and respect myself, would I turn stewardship of my mind and body over to junk food and preparation methods that didn't have my best interests at heart? I alone, as it should be, am responsible for my own health. Taking the time to look deeply and honestly at that issue has brought me to the point today where I can't remember the last time or place that I ate fast food. I think it has been a few years, but I am not sure.

I am eating healthier than ever before and I am cooking at home more than ever before. I enjoy immensely the challenge presented by the viewpoint that healthy food has to be simple and without complex flavors.
 
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A good decade ago, I was 52, I suffered from severe heart rate problems. Let's summarize; 50 cigarettes a day (I quit since), nearly a bottle of wine each day, a few whiskys, plenty of strong coffee, restaurant food, no excercise at all, too much work, stressed etc.  No wonder it all went wrong; overweight, high bloodpressure etc. I even had to stop working which depressed me enormously!

I  now know a few things from discussions with doctors; it's all about the whole lifestyle. Eat less but eat better, drink more water (which I never ever did before!!!), do simple excercise like walking, don't worry too much. Many think that working out will help; it doesn't, the amount of excercise needed to lose just a bit of weight is enormous. But, you really need to excercise for blood circulation. I drive my bicycle whenever the weather is good, I go for a long city walk at least once a week and have a nice beer, just one, no more. I eat about half of what I ate before, meat is no longer a must.

Doctors will try to keep you away from alcohol, pasta, aged cheeses and what not. The last one I visited simply said that living like a heremite doesn't work at all, just keep it simple and less of everything, that works. As a last note; I never eat junkfood, I never did and never will.
 
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I agree Cheflayne. If anything, I think you can bring even more flavor to foods that honor your body, than the artificial flavors we're all taught were the paradigm of food from such a young age. An essential part of a new eating lifestyle is also being open enough to allow your palate to evolve to a higher level.
 
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Oops, I forgot. Fat people are lazy undisciplined slobs. That's the problem right there. Never mind the post graduate degrees, owning our own businesses and going to all out kids soccer games, keeping our houses clean and our family activities running. If only they weren't so lazy, they could be skinny too.

As someone who has battled a moderate weight issue most of my life I can't even imagine what it would be like to be obese and discriminated against. Arguing with someone about this who's never had a weight problem is absurd. Nobody chooses to be obese and obesity is not a character flaw. There are many issues involved and disordered eating is just one of them. You may not like the word but it exists. I for one would never approach someone with a disease and tell them that its their fault they have it.

Bottom line is that some people struggle more with their weight than others. They shouldn't be put down for it. I don't like tilapia yet it shows up on menus from time to time, presumably others like it. But it shouldn't be removed from the menu just because I don't order it. If someone doesn't like the calorie count posted on the menus then don't pay attention to it. Now that's easy.
 
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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.

Try living in NYC. Everyone here is skinny AND fashionable. I grew up in the south, usually the smallest person in the room. Now there are often times I am the biggest. But then go and visit inner city schools. Obesity and asthma rates through the roof. I'm scared about what will happen in the future if some of the issues are not addressed. My students get phys Ed once a week and if they are misbehaving - none at all. Their lunches are not great either. Wilted broccoli and a sad tiny little orange on the side of gloop. A line of ice cream trucks parked outside at the end of the school day. Pockets full of sugary snacks. It's very sad.
 
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Oops, I forgot. Fat people are lazy undisciplined slobs. That's the problem right there. Never mind the post graduate degrees, owning our own businesses and going to all out kids soccer games, keeping our houses clean and our family activities running. If only they weren't so lazy, they could be skinny too.

As someone who has battled a moderate weight issue most of my life I can't even imagine what it would be like to be obese and discriminated against. Arguing with someone about this who's never had a weight problem is absurd. Nobody chooses to be obese and obesity is not a character flaw. There are many issues involved and disordered eating is just one of them. You may not like the word but it exists. I for one would never approach someone with a disease and tell them that its their fault they have it.

Bottom line is that some people struggle more with their weight than others. They shouldn't be put down for it. I don't like tilapia yet it shows up on menus from time to time, presumably others like it. But it shouldn't be removed from the menu just because I don't order it. If someone doesn't like the calorie count posted on the menus then don't pay attention to it. Now that's easy.
I don't think we are arguing that obesity is a character flaw. I personally believe that we ALL have the potential to be obese/overweight/etc. Just like how we all have the ability to lose weight.
 
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Oops, I forgot. Fat people are lazy undisciplined slobs.
Whoa!! who here said that? that is totally a chip on your shoulder. That's not something I even remotely said.

I agree with Lucas, we're all capable of obesity, and many of us struggle to not fall victim to it. I believe there's a tremendous misconception that being thin comes easy to people who are fit. Every day we have to push certain things away, and make tough choices that many times leaves us unfulfilled. Not to mention having to force ourselves to workout when we really don't feel like it, and it begins to feel like a part-time job. You can be angry and get defensive all you want, but at least you get to eat everything you want, but then don't get upset when you don't look the way you want to look. I wish I could have Wendy's triple classic with bacon followed by Dairy Queens Pecan Turtle Blizzard, but the momentary satisfaction of those foods are not worth what I would look like if I ate those things on a regular basis. I think it was Kate Moss who once said, "Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels", for me that's how I feel. It's about choices. You make your choices, I make mine. No one forces anyone to do anything.

Also, I used to be out of shape, but I bet you didn't know that about me.. you just took it upon yourself to make that assumption.
 
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I don't see food as an enemy. I would much rather have a steak, a drink or a cigar every so often than live a few more years in a nursing home. I have watched my mother who has advanced dementia waste away year on end and still keeps going. No way to spend your life. Eat drink and be happy. It's what life is about. Be happy
 
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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)
It's a shame that food is seen that way where you are. I agree with you, I see it as a celebration too. I actually look forward to going home, preparing and cooking a nice meal every night. It's the highlight of working week. I love sitting down to dinner with my husband and finding the time to talk properly about our day.
 
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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.
I agree when you say that it's not that easy. As someone who battled with body image and weight from the age of 13, I know it is FAR from easy. There are many reasons why people find comfort in food, and for some people it is not as easy as eating less or exercising. It is far more complex than that.
 
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Interesting thread,,,,,,

Diets are considered something that's temporary..,,,.in that there's an end in sight.....a weight goal.

Now what???

I maintain that there is no such thing as a diet.

In order to lose weight and keep it off......forever.......one has to make some basic lifestyle changes in order to make this happen.

KK....fat people are not lazy undisciplined slobs..............There are all sorts of reasons for overeating and to put a label and group everybody into that label is just wrong.

According to the BMI scale (which I still to this day don't understand) I am considered obese at 185 # on a 5' 7" frame.

I wear a size 34 waist, and I don't have a belly overhang, yet I'm still labeled obese.....

I walk my dogs 3 miles in the morning and another 1 1/2 in the evening. I left weights and do a cardio workout 3-4 times a week.

Now, I'm not tooting my horn because I can fall off this wall so easily and be right back at square 1.

This is something that takes time to develop and doesn't happen overnight.
 
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I'm honestly kinda tired of hearing about "eating disorders" and using that as an excuse.. I'm not saying you KK, really I am not, because I have no idea who you are, I just mean in general. What does food disorder mean? that people love food and can't stop eating it? well I love food too! obviously If I'm in the food business, and would love to sit on the couch eating crap all day, or stroll music festivals eating fried treats, and ice cream, but my common sense tells me I shouldn't do that if I don't want to gain too much weight and become obese and unhealthy. A lack of discipline does not a food addict make.

It pains me to walk away from my favorite foods sometimes, but it's either that, or I can cry later and begin labeling myself as obese with a food disorder because it's much easier that way. You can't have it all, not unless you change the kinds of foods you eat, and how they are prepared. People don't become fat with fresh healthy intelligently prepared meats, and produce. Not unless they have a severe diagnosed thyroid problem, which is not what we're discussing here.

I think there's a misconception that people who watch what they eat don't sometimes suffer for their choices, and people who are obese with "FD" don't give credit that some of us are disciplined enough to resist temptation.

I often notice people who have weight issues get rather defensive about this topic because they are more interested in being a sophist on the topic than looking at the facts that are as clear as day and really try to help themselves. They are usually more interested in making excuses and self-diagnosing themselves with "disorders" than making a true and honest commitment in correcting these issues.
You may not have used the words "fat lazy slob" but from what you wrote here I gather that you think it's as simple as resisting temptations.  I do not consider myself any kind of "sophist" since I put my own words into practice and work very hard to maintain a healthy lifestyle.  But ChrisBelgium is right on the money about exercise not causing a lot of weightloss.  Exercise is fantastic for many reasons, but losing weight happens with moderating food. Being healthy is not a choice, it is about making several choices on a daily basis.  I would say you're being a little more idealistic than I am being a sophist.  There are many factors that have contributed to obesity, I've brought up several about schools, fast food, cost of food etc,.  Yes, it is simple - eat less, move more if you are able to do that, if you can afford to do that.  But obviously there is something bigger going on here than just bad choices in order for the American obesity rates to have sky rocketed.  Personal responsibility, yes it plays a role.  But without education, and a pervasiveness of sugar and salt in cheap foods will and has resulted in an epidemic.  I imagine that for a single mother with 2 kids and 2 jobs would find it difficult to fit exercise into her day and cook "healthy intelligently prepared meats," whatever that means.  Sometimes the more economical choice is a big bag of white bread, pre-sliced meat and processed cheese.  Or a visit to the value menu.  These choices are being made every day.  It'd be nice if everyone knew better but sometimes they don't, and sometimes they do know better but opt for the easier choice or the cheaper choice.  There's all kinds of factors to consider before judging someone for their choices.

I struggle to understand how someone identifies an eating disorder as "people love food and can't stop eating it?"  There are several types of eating disorders that are extremely difficult to treat and can lead to deadly consequences.  Nobody wants or likes to have an eating disorder, it is not something that people invent so that they have an excuse to eat as much or as little as they want.  In fact most people would trade their right arm to have a treatable thyroid problem instead of an eating disorder.

I'm in no position to judge how and how much you struggle with your food choices.  
 
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There are a few things that were posted I simply don't agree with, like the statement that "exercise not causing a lot of weight-loss". That boggles my mind. I'm sitting here speechless about that, but I am going to graciously bow out of this discussion because we were all given a warning by Pete.

All i'm going to say is that I respect everyone here I've discussed this topic with.
 
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Like I said, exercise is great.  It burns calories, but it doesn't burn that many calories.  If you eat a piece of cake that's 500cal conservatively, how much exercise do you think is necessary to burn it off?  Looking strictly at numbers exercise alone does not make up for a poor diet.  It is very important to me to exercise, but I do not rely on it solely for keeping me healthy.  I have a quote (one of many) on my refrigerator that says "Weight loss is done in the kitchen, fitness is done in your sneakers."
 
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Originally Posted by Koukouvagia  

There are many factors that have contributed to obesity, I've brought up several about schools, fast food, cost of food etc,.  Yes, it is simple - eat less, move more if you are able to do that, if you can afford to do that.  But obviously there is something bigger going on here than just bad choices in order for the American obesity rates to have sky rocketed.  Personal responsibility, yes it plays a role.  But without education, and a pervasiveness of sugar and salt in cheap foods will and has resulted in an epidemic.  I imagine that for a single mother with 2 kids and 2 jobs would find it difficult to fit exercise into her day and cook "healthy intelligently prepared meats," whatever that means.  Sometimes the more economical choice is a big bag of white bread, pre-sliced meat and processed cheese.  Or a visit to the value menu.  These choices are being made every day.  It'd be nice if everyone knew better but sometimes they don't, and sometimes they do know better but opt for the easier choice or the cheaper choice.  There's all kinds of factors to consider before judging someone for their choices.
Judging anyone else for their choices has proven to me time after time to be a pointless dead end road. I wholeheartedly agree that education and enlightenment are answers that bear nourishing fruit. I can't answer for anyone else, but I take it upon myself to initiate my own learning process.

That learning process has shown to me that I can put food on my table, that goes in the dietary direction that i choose for myself, quickly, inexpensively, and that is full of flavor.

“Moderation in all things, especially moderation.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Moderation has never been my strong point. In fact it is an ongoing battle, but one that I make progress on by focusing on balance. Balance is essential for me. Balance in considering all the dietary, financial, and ease of preparation matters, when shopping at the grocery store or farmers market (cheapest and easiest, isn't all ways best, crap in / crap out). When I employ balance in my diet, I don't have to struggle with considering what not to eat. No wasted time sweating bad juju.

I had a treatable thyroid condition. Thyroid cancer. 30 years later, I still have my right arm and my life. Balance. My mantra.
 
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Eat some of everything and nothing to excess. My grandmother taught me that one. She doesn't know that she did, but she did. She taught me much. She bought a new car when she was 93.
 
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Eat some of everything and nothing to excess. My grandmother taught me that one. She doesn't know that she did, but she did. She taught me much. She bought a new car when she was 93.
What a lady /img/vbsmilies/smilies/biggrin.gif   She sounds great.
 
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Perhaps a little OT but as my friend always says wothehell....
I sat and watched an osprey today as he swooped down picked up a fish and flew away....it was joyous as it always is to watch that.
Then i thought WOW!.... how easy breezy life would be to have such clear and simple food choices

joey :cool: ;)
 
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