Sunday, May 20, 2007

Decisions, Decisions.

I don't eat very healthy, generally speaking. It's bad, I know. But I usually fall back on whipping up some Top Ramen, or nuking a frozen burrito in the microwave. I talk all the time about getting on a good diet, and I recently bought a book called Wicca In The Kitchen all about food on the spiritual level. Sadly, I regularly find myself too lazy to make anything substantial, so my health suffers. Not drastically, of course, but I notice that when I do eat well, I have more energy and just feel better. It doesn't help that I am an extremely picky eater, although I do try to expand my horizons.

One excuse I could make for myself is that it's expensive to eat healthy. God knows that buying an twelve pack of Top Ramen is cheaper than combing the organic foods aisle. When my mom and I go shopping, it's a luxury to get real, good food. A lot of the food we get comes in a box. Only recently (in the past few months) have we become more aware of what we buy, and my mom has turned to buying whole grain breads, soy milk, and things with the big Organic label. We literally pay the price though, because it is so costly. As a family of five, with three older teenagers to feed on one income, it's hard to spend money to live well.

Ridiculous, right? Why should it be so expensive just to sustain life and be healthy? Are we expected to live off of frozen fish sticks and Campbell's condensed soup? I guess so.

This brings me to my main reason for writing this.

"Dried apples preserved with a cancer-causing chemical.

Frozen catfish laden with banned antibiotics.

Scallops and sardines coated with putrefying bacteria.

Mushrooms laced with illegal pesticides.

These were among the 107 food imports from China that the Food and Drug Administration detained at U.S. ports just last month, agency documents reveal, along with more than 1,000 shipments of tainted Chinese dietary supplements, toxic Chinese cosmetics and counterfeit Chinese medicines."

This is an excerpt from a Washington Post article concerning tainted Chinese imports. What I don't understand is how we can do so much business with a country that has such low standards for sanitation and quality. The food is cheap, though, so we buy it. Well, not me. Not anymore. After the melamine disaster, I want to make an effort to be healthier and watch what I'm buying. So that means I have to be broke to be healthy. Right....

The scary part of all of this is that it's getting harder to find products that don't, in one way or another, come from China.

"'It is not just that food from China is cheap,' said William Hubbard, a former associate director of the FDA. 'For a growing number of important food products, China has become virtually the only source in the world.
China controls 80 percent of the world's production of ascorbic acid, for example, a valuable preservative that is ubiquitous in processed and other foods. Only one producer remains in the United States,' Hubbard said."

Perhaps it would be better if we all just managed our own food. That seems like the only way to truly know what's in it. I, for example, have planted radishes and carrots in my front yard. I've yielded quite a few radishes so far, but the carrots aren't quite ready yet.

For more on this subject, go read what Kim has to say. She's far more eloquent and thorough than I am for sure.

On a completely different note, I'm registering for Running Start on Tuesday. Running Start is a program where you can go to college while still in high school, gaining both high school and college credit. I'll get my high school and associate's degrees around the same time. I have no real idea what I want to do with my life; part of me wants to do something in politics, but the other part wants to run away to New York and go on Broadway. I feel like there are so many things that I want to do, and I want to get a chance to do them all. But it doesn't ever feel like there's enough time.

Well, stepping stones. One day at a time, right?

You're alive. Do something. The directive in life, the moral imperative was so uncomplicated. It could be expressed in single words, not complete sentences. It sounded like this: Look. Listen. Choose. Act. -Barbara Hall, A Summons to New Orleans, 2000

1 comment:

Soulknitting said...

I often fall into the same trap of not eating right. We're human. I try to get enough protein and veggies in me 5 days a week. And some dark chocolate at least 3 days a week (gg). China sucks. I just keep putting things back on the shelf when I see that is where the product orginates from. The 'head start' program sounds good. Miss you. All. Love Kim.