Most of us don’t read the ingredients content’s on the food packages, and freshly baked bread most of the time doesn’t have it. So, we don’t know exactly what we eat.
Why am I tackling this topic at all, when it is hardly interesting? Well, I guess I’m some antiquity or something like this. Maybe I’m in the years when the world, the so called progress and human endeavors look awkward.
The thing is, that one day I went to a local store and wondered how come that I see so many obese people around me, while there were practically none in my youth. Okay, we were mostly walking to the school and spent afternoons playing outdoors or helping our parents and relatives, neighbors or friends.
So we were moving a lot and burned the so called calorie intake in no time.
But there is yet another thing that passes us unnoticed.
Here. I’m going to list you some of the daily commands from my childhood:
- Don’t overeat yourself.
- Don’t eat sweets for a breakfast.
- Don’t eat sweets before a regular meal.
- Don’t eat sweets – it makes holes in your teeth.
- Don’t eat too much before you go to sleep.
- Drink water, if you are thirsty, or bitter lukewarm yeast&chicory coffee on a hot summer day, or unsweetened tea.
- Eat an apple if you a hungry during meals.
- Chew the food thoroughly.
- Eat slowly. Don’t throw the food into yourself like into a sack.
- Looks like these words still resonate in me and compose my diet.
When I look around, it looks like now everything has to be sweet and fast. If we look the packages we bring into our dwellings more closely we might be surprised. I was.
But before that I read a sentence that raised my interest to look this topic more closely. The sentence goes as follows: »At the beginning of the 20th century – before the widespread cultivation of sugar beets and imports of sugar from cane – intake per capita in Europe was below 5 kg per year rising to the 40-60 kg per year seen in Europe today.« (Health in All Policies, Prospects and Potentials, 2006, http://www.eu2006.fi )
Actually sugar is in many products, we wouldn’t expect it in. Sugar is a preservative, but we used it in preserving sweet food, like jams, jellies, stewed fruit, and cookies. Now, if you read the ingredients content’s you can find it in meat, bread and stewed sour vegetables – in many foods you won’t expect to find sugar.
And guess what, now children eat their cereals in milk for breakfast, and a cup of it contains so much sugar as 6 doughnuts, was told on The Doctor’s TV several years ago (sorry, I can’t find the archived file to state the exact time when the show was aired).
This is one side of this scenario. The other is that people producing sugarcane are mostly so poor they can’t afford themselves much more than to eat one raw sugarcane stalk a day. So on one side we have people getting obese and sick from the excessive intake of a product of a processed plant that is actually a medicinal plant. And on the other side we have starving people who survive by the day consuming that very stalk of that plant.
For the doubters: medicinal properties of sugar cane (http://lifestyle.iloveindia.com/lounge/benefits-of-sugarcane-1882.html), and the same seems true also for the sugar beet http://herbs-treatandtaste.blogspot.com/2012/03/sugar-beet-source-of-sugar-in-cool.html
*In accordance with the saying ‘you are what you eat’; the humankind seems to have turned into sugarkind.