Why Do You Fear the Poor Vegetable?
“Skip, you had me all the way up to the "plant-based" stuff. ;-)
The closest I get to a plant-based diet is when I eat animals that eat plants.”
We hear this sort of statement all the time. There seems to be a morbid fear of the simple vegetable and a profound love for eating meat/animals. I truly do not understand this abject rejection of one of natures most beneficial classes of food.
Is it because people have been so indoctrinated over the years with advertisements like “Where's the Beef?” that they have lost touch with reality? Have the commercials for meat, fish dairy and eggs so enamored the masses that they refuse to ever consider the impact on their health?
We no longer teach Home Economics and basic household skills in school. Lost for generations, people have forgotten what that very expensive room in the house is used for. The Kitchen might be the most underutilized yet most expensive single room in most homes. Sure they all look great, all that gleaming hardware, shiny tools, knives and such; but who knows how to use them any longer?
Cooking at home is a lost art. Yes, it truly IS an art-form and one that families once bet their lives on. Now way too many bet their lives, health and longevity on the local fast food joint. Have you ever seen their 'kitchen'? Mostly it is a big freezer with all sorts of processed/frozen 'food' that is simple taken out, heated up and served. It is take out at the take out! You might as well just get a frozen dinner from the local grocery and save a lot of money! Actually the frozen meals in most grocer's frozen food section are much better for you!
America and it's influence across the Planet has made the fast food joint the norm, not the exception. Travel to China, or just about anywhere and BAM!, there are the Golden Arches. The health trends in many third world countries are declining at a corresponding rate to their growth of fast food establishments and their backing away from their traditional dietary cuisine.
There have been hundreds of studies over the past decades that point to the declining health in America and around the Planet. America, with it's expensive healthcare now ranks dead LAST among eleven of the most Westernized Countries. The World Health Organization ranks the USA Thirty Seventh (37) in a recent ranking of some 200 Countries.
Have you ever considered the simple question: WHY?
Maybe it's time to reconsider the simple vegetable. It has almost limitless variations and varieties. Tastes range from mild to exotic, spicy to bland and everything in between. Full of healthy fiber, vitamins, minerals and nutrients NOT found in meat, fish, dairy and eggs, the simple vegetable is not injected with antibacterials, growth hormones and who knows what else. There is NO fiber in meat; yet the human body requires it. Sure you can drink a fiber drink but why not simply eat your vegetables. They are delicious by themselves, prepared with some spices and combined together they are truly divine!
Consider learning some simple cooking skills. Most healthy meals (many plant-based) can be easily prepared in 30 minutes or less. MUCH less time than that local drive through fast food joint. Quicker and much cheaper than just about any restaurant. AND it just might help you feel better, reverse any disease and add years, if not decades, to your life! A LIFE that can be full of energy, vitality and FUN right until the very end!
So, honor the humble vegetable. It is here to help, not hurt you. Learn to invite these humble, yet miraculous lifesaving guys into your home and enjoy them at every meal!
Skip Stein is the COO at Whole Foods 4 Healthy Living in Orlando, Florida.