Can someone tell me what I can eat these days, without increasing my risk of premature death from some heinous cancer, diabetes or heart disease?
Do you find yourself in a permanent state of confusion about what we can and can’t eat these days?
And I’m not talking about when you’re dieting. I’m talking generally. Day to day.
It’s hard enough for us mums to have to think about what to cook, let alone meet all of the latest rad health recommendations.
I’ll give you an example: I’ve spent most of my life
pretending trying to avoid cholesterol (I made Brie an exception, OBVIOUSLY) due to a nasty and persistent little genetic mutation on my mother’s side of the family that causes premature death, only to discover last week that cholesterol is in fact our friend.
I could cry when I think of all the Eggs Benedict I denied myself.
That’s what the world’s coming to. One week we’re told to avoid red meat and replace it with shoals of oily fish; the next week fish is off the menu because of mercury poisoning and the nuclear bi-products of the Japanese Tsunami.
And then there’s Pete Evans…
…who has gone completely bonkers against the grain (sorry!) and tells us we need to follow the Paleo diet and give up sugar, dairy, carbs and just about anything else that tastes vaguely nice or is comforting and go back to eating what the cavemen survived on…
…which, I think, was predominantly red meat. *hmmm*
Hang on a second… I thought you said red meat was bad for us because it’s hard for the body to digest and increases the risk of colon cancer?
Oh well, at least nuts are good for us… if you can stop at two.
And fruit is okay if you ignore the fructose…
But what about the huge cover-ups those naughty food companies have been accused of? Because apparently they’ve been filling ‘fat-free’ foods with hidden, naughty sugars, making us believe that those ‘yummy-for-diet-food‘, low-fat yoghurts were really low in calories?
And then there was Dr Atkins who led us down the garden path by saying that we could cut out all carbs without any harm, which, again, meant we had to eat tons of red meat…*headscratch*
Oh, and dairy is bad as well, according to nutritionists, although try telling that to my ancient dentist. I thought middle-aged woman were meant to increase their dairy consumption in menopause for the extra calcium, so their legs don’t suddenly implode halfway around the golf course?
And for all those Smuggidy-Smugs with their Soy milk-decaf-Caps who hold up the coffee queue each morning and who thought soy was as safe as Rolf Harris – WATCH YOUR SPERM COUNT, is all I’ll say!
Even vitamin supplements have been given a bad rap because although we should be able to source all our vitamins from our diet, I’m not sure how the fuck we can when we can’t eat anything.
And don’t get me started on the conundrums of 1) what the fuck is quinoa? and 2)because I’m too cool to buy a Thermomix, does that make me a really bad mother?
Is progress in the scientific understanding about what food does to our body REALLY improving our lives, or feeding our anxiety?
Our grandparents never worried about how many alcoholic units they consumed in a week, whereas I have a panic attack when I get close to the recommended allowance – that frankly only another glass will assuage.
Remind me: what exactly can we eat?