Posts Tagged ‘politics’

Food for Thought Fridays: not all beige is bad

February 11, 2011 4 comments

Happy Friday!
You always hear about adding color to you diet and how colorful food are always much better for you than bland, beige foods.

I don’t think all beige is bad and sometimes it just happens.

This past week it just happened that one of my meals lacked color. I could’ve added some bright greens with zucchini and broccoli, but those were being saved for another meal, so beige it was!

Potato pancakes (aka flat hash browns) and Quinoa

Shredded potatoes
No onions, that’s gross.
Cornstarch, Paprika, Red Pepper Flakes, Bread Crumbs.
Mix it up and fry. I used peanut oil (it just smells awesome!)

I got the recipe backbone from the Veganomicon, but when it wasn’t quite sticking together well enough, I threw an egg in there (note: I didn’t have matzo meal, so it might work better for you if you have some).

Still really good though, especially with a bit of locally made BBQ sauce β™₯

I didn’t have too much time to get a lot of articles for today. I did read a lot of them, but many are just repetitive of the same information.

The Eating Rules Philosophy Summed up in Two Venn Diagrams
This pretty much sums up the best & simplest good eating philosophy ever.

Need Inspiration? Watch this Trailer – Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead
I’ll probably have to watch this when it makes its way to Netflix. I love documentaries and personal stories (the accent helps too!). I don’t know what I think about the 60 day juice diet that the narrator takes on, whether it is the healthiest way to go or not, but I don’t doubt the ability to get all your calories, but I think I would miss chewing.

Is β€˜Eat Real Food’ Unthinkable?

This was my favorite article this week. I just started following Mark Bittman on Twitter this past week and have not regretted it. There are three different happenings that he talks about that have occured recently.

New USDA food guidelines: I don’t really care so much about these. I know that they play a bigger role in school nutrition, but the public doesn’t pay attention to these. Michael Pollan’s “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” would’ve summed up what actually needed to be said. (I got to see him speak a year ago! Still pumped about that!)

Vegan Oprah: First, Oprah would do anything for more publicity (really, you’re taking your whole audience to Australia?). Second, as a person that flirts with vegetarianism and veganism on about a 90% basis, I hate strongly dislike the use of faux meats as substitutes. Yes, I eat tofu, but that’s the only ingredient – soy beans.

Wal-mart & the White House: do I need to say anything? Maybe. This is making me almost not like you, Michelle Obama! The idea of walking into a Wal-mart makes me uneasy and dirty feeling. I don’t want the know the lengths that they will go to in order to make ‘healthy’ food less expensive.

The end! It’s Friday! This weekend I am tasked with creating a menu of breakfasts, lunches, and dinners for Thursday through Saturday night. It will have to have a veg option for me and also all has to be gluten-free for Megan. I’ll post my menu up here once I finish it πŸ™‚


A Child-Free Opinion of School Nutrition Changes

January 14, 2011 4 comments

Does this look familiar to you??

I try to keep up with what is happening in the government with the school nutrition changes. I don’t have any kids (and hopefully will not for a long time), but it still is something I find myself caring a lot about.

I ate a lot of school lunch. Elementary school was full of weird pizzas with two pepperoni, chicken nuggets, GROSS green beans. I talked before about the awesome choices I made as a middle-schooler. High school was a pop or two a day during school and lunch often consisted of popcorn chicken/shrimp or I would just skip lunch totally. Often times I wonder why I wasn’t a lot heavier back then. Chalk that up to metabolism and bike riding, I guess (it certainly wasn’t the non-existent mandatory gym classes!).

While I do believe that it is the parent’s responsibility feed their children healthy foods, I don’t think that the responsibility should be placed 100% in their hands. Most parents trust that when they send their children to school with money to buy a lunch that they are getting a healthy lunch… and unfortunately, that is not the case.

I also think, and can speak from my own experience, that our tastes and distastes for foods are created when we are really young and it is often hard to break out of that way of thinking. I was a very picky (and spoiled) eater when I was little and it took living in a foreign country and not having that choice to jolt me out of it. If we are able to expose children to a wide variety of foods, including those that they don’t normally get served at home (seriously, I’d never had asparagus until university), and teach them about proper nutrition, it would hopefully make them better prepared to make good choices as adults and then as parents themselves.

I whole-heartedly agree with Marion Nestle in her article about this. The federal reimbursement rate for school lunches is low. It stayed the same rate from the 1970s until now. No surprise though, it is still low. And what does a low food budget crossed with more strict nutritional standards get you?

But the foods are accompanied by strangely tasting miracles of food technology such as reduced-fat mayonnaise, low-fat salad dressings, and soft margarines. Why? To meet nutrient standards.

That. Food that is not really food.

Don’t get me wrong. I think that the school nutrition reform is amazing and awesome (and all sorts of adjectives). It is a huge leap forward, especially for families that depend on federally discounted or free school breakfasts and lunches.

Questions though, since I don’t remember too much from elementary lunch. Do they offer anything else besides milk? Even water? Are parents of child with special dietary needs just expected to pack lunches for them?

If you don’t know what I’ve been talking about, in this sort of long post, you should find out.

Marion Nestle and Michele Simon are great people to either follow on Twitter or read their blogs.

Food Victories

December 3, 2010 1 comment

Just a little blurb to say that the Child Nutrition Bill passed in the House yesterday, and will shortly be sent to President Obama for his signature. The vote was 264 to 157.

From the article:

“The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act gives schools critical resources to reach more children with healthy school meals and to serve more fresh produce, whole grains and low-fat dairy products in cafeterias. By establishing nutrition standards for all foods served or sold in schools, the legislation ensures that students will receive a consistent message about healthy choices.”

The legislation will also raise the federal reimbursement rate for school lunches by 6 cents.

With the Child Nutrition Bill passing the House as well as the Food Safety Bill in the Senate, it certainly has been an active week for food politics πŸ™‚