Food & Fitness

First Barbecue of the Season!

Dinner today was homemade turkey burgers on homemade wholewheat buns. We demolished them pretty effectively! It’s amazing how similar ground turkey is to ground beef.

Do you also find that a lot of food that is healthier or made with less fat tends to taste virtually identical to the regular stuff? I mean, I can’t tell the difference between regular boxed chicken broth (1/2 of your sodium intake for the day in 1 cup—yum?) and the reduced-sodium type. But the broth with less sodium is obviously heaps better for you. And yet, so much of the time when someone suggests going with a healthier option, they’ll get somewhat skeptical reactions and bewildered looks from other people. Why this aversion, this fear of foods that are depicted as healthier?

A response to "Super Slim Me", plus the effect the food and fashion industry has on our health and why we need to take responsibility.

Part of the issue is marketing strategies. Who wants to have something with 50% LESS FAT stamped across it? Why would you want to be eating from a box that screams “I’m dieting!” (which is what a lot of healthier choices end up unfortunately conveying)?

Self-consciousness is huge these days. No one wants to appear this way or that way, and with all of the discrimination going on, who can blame us for caring so much about what other people think? The problem with freedom of speech is that it’s just that; freedom of speech. Anyone can say whatever they want, regardless of the potentially negative effects it’ll have on those that they say it to. There’s nowhere left to be safe from critical eyes.

I think it’s interesting in the show Super Slim Me (similar to Super Size Me, you can view it on YouTube) how the girl conducting the experiment takes around a cake and tries to ask various people what portion of the cake they feel they should take, if the cake represents their personal responsibility to the size zero phenomenon. No one wants to take responsibility, not even the modeling agencies. In fact, at one point, a man working for a modeling agency remarks flippantly, “take your cake to clothing designers.”

All of this shuffling of responsibility isn’t going to get us very far at all. That’s why it’s up to all of us regular people to accept responsibility and take action in fighting against the increasing amounts of eating disorders and body image issues that are threatening countless women (and men) all across the world. I have so much respect for people partaking in experiments such as Super Slim Me (and Super Size Me, for that matter), in that they are just regular people like you and I, demonstrating to the world the horrifying reality of the state of our health.

Check out the show on YouTube (it’s only about an hour long and it features a really cute British girl so her perspective upon arriving in the States makes it all the more fascinating) and share your thoughts on all of this in the comments section below!

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  1. Gena

    Never seen the show, but I’ll have to check it out!

    I always buy the reduced sodium, low fat choices, but I’ve never felt self-conscious about it. Maybe it’s because I equate buying those things with healthy choices, rather than dieting.

  2. Crabby McSlacker

    There are some things that I can taste a difference on–like when cheese gets so low fat it won’t melt and tastes like rubber. But you’re right–most of the healthier versions taste just as good.

    I’m still amazed when I see overweight middle-aged men who look like their on the verge of a heart attack already choose to drink full fat milk instead of low or nonfat. When with just a few weeks of transition and they probably wouldn’t even notice the difference.

  3. Randi

    Yeah that was an interesting show. I wanna watch the other one with the 2 reporters now too, heard it was a bit different. same idea.

    I am new to the ground turkey scene, but SIL made some spaghetti sauce out of it, I ate it, and couldn’t even tell. But I’m one of the people who can’t tell a difference between coke and pepsi (should I say, diet coke and diet pepsi, I’m not ashamed of the “diet”!)

  4. Sagan Morrow

    It is so good to hear the lack of self-consciousness from all of you!

    Crabby- I wonder the same thing all the time. Do you think it’s simply unawareness that’s the issue? Or not caring? I suppose it could also be just not wanting to break from the tradition… it’s kind of interesting when you think about the psychology behind it.

    Randi- what’s the other show? I didn’t realize there was another one. Do tell!

  5. ashley

    If you eat “healthy” or go for the lighter versions, you’re looked at as crazy. But the standard to be small still exists. Really, it is so counteractive. But everyone is still making money!

    Great post!

  6. Scale Junkie

    I’ve started using turkey and if I want a beef flavor to the ground turkey, I sprinkle in some low sodium beef bullion powder, it doesn’t take a lot of it to give it a beefy flavor. Honestly these days I just prefer the ground turkey. Thanks for the link to the video, it sounds fascinating.

    As to the question you asked me about adding more variety in your diet the way I found it easiest to do that was by menu planning. By working out your menu ahead of time you can allow for trying a few new things each week by scheduling it in. We will always have our basic foods that we eat all the time but sometimes just mixing things up a bit really helps keep it interesting and keep you interested in staying on track. Good luck!

  7. the Bag Lady

    The Bag Lady likes ground turkey, too. She occasionally uses it in spaghetti sauces, etc. but, being in the beef-producing industry, we eat a lot of beef. But it’s our own, so we know it doesn’t have any hormones or antibiotics. And we always have the butcher make the ground beef as lean as possible.
    As for the milk thing that Crabby mentioned, the Cowboy will drink 2% milk if that’s all there is in the house, but he says it tastes like water. Of course, if you could see him, he may be middle-aged, but he’s the furthest thing from overweight….that’s MY job! And I’m the one who uses skim or 1% milk, and low-fat everything else. Where’s the JUSTICE in this world?! (oops, sorry, didn’t mean to yell…or go into a rant…sorry. I’ll stop now!)

  8. Sagan Morrow

    Zandria- when I was younger I’d refuse to eat any type of bread “with bits in it” (ie. wholegrain). But now I agree with you 100%; wholewheat tastes so much better than white!

    Ashley- it’s unfortunate that so many people are making a profit off of all this. Hmm, maybe we could start a campaign to protest against the ridiculous products that are made for the sole purpose of making more money… it would be one hell of a protest:)

    Scale Junkie- thanks for the tip!

    Bag Lady- you are more than welcome to rant here any time you like! And your beef sounds delicious. The next time I’m out west I’ll have to stop by and try it out.

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