“What are you eating?”

Probably one of the most commonly asked questions. Sounds simple enough and we can certainly answer simply enough. This is because the person asking the question is really asking for an overview only, a quick simple answer so they can identify what it is you’re eating. It’s a society acceptable answer.

 

Though for the sake of our health and that of future generations we need a more comprehensive answer and that is where the problem lies. It’s not that people what to be dishonest with you; the truth of it is they simply don’t know the answer. The saying, ‘ What you don’t know can’t hurt you’, isn’t true but it certainly allows us to continue in our daily lives without truly understanding or worrying about what we are putting into our bodies, till we get sick or over weight of course.

The problem lies in both real food and food that’s name is derived as a result of a mixture of ingredients. The latter seems more obvious that we wouldn’t know exactly what ingredients were involved and is often the more acceptable unhealthy treat or food product. For example every so often, hence as a treat we have croissants for breakfast on a Sunday. Any English or French speaking person (as the pronunciation is very similar) would accept the answer ‘croissant’ to what you ate for breakfast this morning as sufficient in information.

 

What is a croissant though? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Croissant. The link on Wikipedia educates me further, but it doesn’t tell me the flour used, whether it’s commercially dyed, whether the ingredients are organic or whether it contains lots of seed oils or preservatives the list could go on and on….Yet I ate it not really knowing what it is that I was eating, but it looked as I had been programmed and educated to believe a ‘croissant’ as a food source should look and taste. Society has given it a ‘food’ name, so we accept without question that it is something our body recognizes as food. Unfortunately the increase in food related illnesses’ is telling us a different story and this ‘food’ we are consuming isn’t being as accepted by our bodies as it has been by our minds.

 

On my journey to educate myself, my family and others I have realized my lack of knowledge in what I’m eating. My previous reluctance to ask whether it due to time or embarrassment of questioning the vendor, as many vendors don’t take kindly to being asked too many questions about what they are selling. I have found this isn’t due to wanting to be dishonest it’s simply due to the fact they also don’t know and that makes them feel silly and no one likes to feel silly… So it continues we don’t ask and no one really knows….

 

Real food is now also equally as confusing as processed food due to its manufacturing. Due to our need for convenience, low cost produce and wanting food to look pleasing to the eye it has also been tarnished. An apple is no longer just an apple and a wild red looking Salmon can now be duplicated in Salmon farms. An apple one of the most notably healthy snacks is one of the highest pesticide residue fruits on the market and farmed salmon contains numerous chemicals as it’s food source is dyed with colour agents and often has GMO in its food to give it the pink colour we consumers desire.

 

The most simple and essential task of feeding our families, and ourselves well is simply too complex with the bombardment of marketing from the big corporations. Without addressing the issue/fact that in today’s society unless you have grown the food you are consuming it isn’t easy to be an educated consumer in our western society.

 

So what I’m asking of you and me is let’s start asking let’s learn about our western food supply and make manufacturers accountable to what’s happening to our food and our bodies. Lets demand the information though awkward and full of facts we’d otherwise choose to ignore as it may spoil our enjoyment. Let’s make our food decisions based on knowledge as the chances are if we don’t understand an ingredient it’s very far away from its natural source and not something our body recognizes as food. Together we can create a better world for the next generation to understand and thrive within.

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