For far too long the health food community has suffered from fat phobia. This myth is slowly being unraveled, however, as new studies reveal the important role fat plays in our health. Recently, nutrition scientists at the Havard School of Public Health stated that:
“the low-fat campaign has been based on little scientific evidence and may have caused unintended health consequences”
Because we have been conditioned to fear fat in our food, eating foods with fat can feel sinful. But the reason fat is so tasty is because as humans we are biologically programmed to desire it. What our bodies are asking us for, however, are natural fats (ones that our ancestors evolved with over hundreds of thousands of years). The American diet has replaced these natural fats with man-made, industrial seed oils- fats that are not found in nature and are thus foreign to our bodies.
Baby back ribs seem like a lot of work but they’re so easy. The problem with ribs is usually the sauce they’re smothered in. I make a BBQ sauce when I cook baby back ribs so I can control the ingredients myself. If you do use a store bought sauce, check the label carefully.
Americans have a love affair with sauces and condiments. Unfortunately, these products are usually more like science fair projects than food. Even (especially) when a product promotes itself with qualifiers like “fat-free!” or “low-sodium!”, you can usually just translate that to “sugar-loaded, chemical explosion!”.
As for barbecue sauce, the number one ingredient is almost always High Fructose Corn Syrup (from GMO corn). You’ll then get a good mix of other seemingly innocent ingredients: tomato paste, vinegar, caramel color. That last one may not catch your attention, but despite its wholesome sounding name, it is in fact linked to cancer and its safety is currently being reevaluated by the FDA.
The most unfortunate resistance to eating healthy is the idea that in order to do so you must suffer through steamed broccoli and tofu every night. In reality, a healthy, real food diet can (and should) include foods that are insanely delicious.
The problem is that we’ve lost touch with our sensory signaling, and we automatically think if something tastes good, it must not be healthy. Continue reading
If you’re a health conscious person (and even if you’re not) I’m sure you’ve heard about the benefits of consuming more fish on a regular basis. Japanese and Mediterranean diets, which both include a great deal of seafood, seem to grow people who generally have lower risk of heart disease, longer life-span, and overall good health. By our reductionist approach, we have attributed this health benefit to the occurrence of Omega-3 fatty acids found naturally in fish, and especially high in fatty fish such as salmon. So we have concluded that eating salmon is good for us, but is that the end of the story?
As more and more people learn that by simply including this delicious fish into their diets they can live to 100 without dropping dead of a heart attack, sales of salmon have soared astronomically. And when demand is high, companies look to how they can produce more of a product, faster and cheaper. The solution for large-scale food producers is to farm salmon (that term alone personally conjures Dr. Seuss images of fish growing on trees somewhere). Farmed salmon is the fastest growing food production system in the world, accounting for 70% of the salmon sold worldwide. What does that mean? Unless the salmon you are buying is labeled as “Wild Caught”, “Alaskan”, or “Sockeye” you are purchasing fish raised by fish-farming practices. So is that really such a bad thing? Is there a reason wild caught salmon is best? Continue reading