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Switch to Forum Live View The Poor and Being Fat
3 years ago  ::  Aug 21, 2011 - 2:45PM #21
DotNotInOz
Posts: 6,833
There's a significant loss of cultural skills, Templar.

My kid sister's high school class was among the last where all girls took at least Home Ec 1 and learned basic from-scratch cooking.

Some public middle and high schools must offer separate cooking-only classes and may charge students a fee to take the class because budget cuts leave the school unable to support the teacher's buying ingredients.

A child in a family where both parents work easily may never learn to cook due to time pressures and other more important priorities. Today's parents of school-age children probably don't know how to do more than nuke something which they regard as cooking.

Cut up a whole chicken and fry it? Peel, cook and mash potatoes then make chicken gravy for them? AS IF... and we didn't even consider cooking fresh veggies or assembling a tossed salad. The latter they'd probably do as did a former acquaintance of mine--buy various chopped veggies from the salad bar, open a bag of greens and mix a salad with no knife required.

Hubby's coworkers sometimes ask at what restaurant he buys the bento box lunch I prepare for him each day. They're commonly stunned when he tells them I make it for him. The next question often is, "Oh, so your wife is Japanese?"

Noooo, but I know basic techniques and taught myself to cook Asian dishes with the aid of good cookbooks.

My mother made sure I knew the basics before I was 12.
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3 years ago  ::  Aug 21, 2011 - 3:05PM #22
TemplarS
Posts: 6,814

Well, Dot, I'll probably be accused again of being elitist,  but I really don't intend to be.  I fully understand that some people don't have a lot of the options others have.


Anyway, my wife works part time, and hence usually has time to make the family a good meal.  More to the subject of the discussion, my daughters have in the process learned to cook quite well.  Just the other day one of them made a very nice shrimp pasta dish.  The other's a vegetarian, but she does eat fish, and has come up with some good fish dishes as well. 


I sincerely hope our culture doesn't lose this skill set. Cooking and sharing meals together is, I think, one of the oldest and best of human traditions.


Other problem is (not, of course, limited to poor people) that kids these days seem to have to have so many damned organized activities, this is also a threat to the tradititional family meal.




 

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3 years ago  ::  Aug 21, 2011 - 3:23PM #23
Wanderingal
Posts: 5,504

Aug 21, 2011 -- 11:04AM, TemplarS wrote:


Aug 21, 2011 -- 5:19AM, Wanderingal wrote:


 


"My fat gain is 'healthier' than your fat gain...."


NO it's not.




Oh, absolutely true.


But there are bad health effects to a poor diet other than weight.  There are vitamins, calcium and other minerals, fiber, micronutrients, antioxidants, omega oils.  You don't get these from a Coke and a super-size order of french fries.   


Excess of calories is not healthy, but excess of empty calories is in fact worse.





Not really.


ANY and ALL EXCESS calories are stored as fat--and fat is what results in the clogging of the arteries and the killing of the heart...



Vitamins and minerals do not"magically" counteract the presence of excess calories.


Period.


 

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3 years ago  ::  Aug 21, 2011 - 4:49PM #24
DotNotInOz
Posts: 6,833
While I agree with Templar that he's a least getting fat from more nourishing food, fat is simply fat. 

He's likely better nourished overall than someone who packs on the pounds with twinkies, chocolate bars, beer, snack chips and lots of MickeyD's meals. 

In terms of diseases fueled by excess weight, I'll vote with WG that he's likely not much healthier than my sample junkfood junkie.  
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3 years ago  ::  Aug 21, 2011 - 5:31PM #25
Wanderingal
Posts: 5,504

To be blunt about it--when you cut open a fat person during an autopsy there is no sign on their large amounts of fat that says--"Expensive fat" or "Cheap fat"


It's just really large compartments of greasy ugly FAT.


 

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3 years ago  ::  Aug 21, 2011 - 5:35PM #26
jane2
Posts: 14,295

Aug 21, 2011 -- 4:49PM, DotNotInOz wrote:

While I agree with Templar that he's a least getting fat from more nourishing food, fat is simply fat.  He's likely better nourished overall than someone who packs on the pounds with twinkies, chocolate bars, beer, snack chips and lots of MickeyD's meals.  In terms of diseases fueled by excess weight, I'll vote with WG that he's likely not much healthier than my sample junkfood junkie.  



I would disagree. Type of nourishment does matter. Too much blue cheese in the salad dressing, etc. is not the same as a "twinky" diet. Mayo in the tuna salad adds calorie, tuna contains good protein, etc. Dipping freshly cooked lobster in melted butter occasionally is fine. Many of us eat lon strip steaks instead of DelMonico rib steaks.


Middle-aged weight gain has many causes. We know most of them. We can be vigilant without letting food rule our lives.


In truth, our society has shown little care for the poor in decades. Social services have been cut to the bone. I remember Robert Kennedy's shock at poverty in the South and elsewhere. He was murdered. And Ted Kennedy, the Great Lion of the Senate is gone, too. In the early 80's my younger daughter ran across a man with a sign "will work for food"; she took him othe nearest "fast food" restaurant and bought him a meal--she was running as training for xcountry, a freshman in high school.


Why not support more fresh veggie and fruit trucks that visit areas where these are not available?
Our national politics are bizarre to the max right now. Moderates of either stripe are sidelined. I am a moderate slightly left of center because I do believe I am my brother's keeper--liberal, intellectual Catholic.


 

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3 years ago  ::  Aug 21, 2011 - 9:40PM #27
newsjunkie
Posts: 5,744

Aug 21, 2011 -- 1:06PM, TemplarS wrote:


Aug 21, 2011 -- 5:29AM, DotNotInOz wrote:

 Cooking healthy ingredients from scratch takes basic skills, determination, time and effort, things that even the working poor may not possess.  




I'm not sure about skills.  Maybe so, but if so, there is a significant cultural loss going on.  In the old days (meaning, like when I was young), mothers had the skills, and passed them along.  But like any skills, don't use them, you lose them.  Poor families where perhaps people need to work multiple minimum wage jobs- time might also be a problem.


 



Aug 21, 2011 -- 5:29AM, DotNotInOz wrote:

 I'm amazed at reports on how few more affluent, well-educated Americans know how to cook and do so regularly.





Same issue, now you've got both parents working to afford the high life style.  No time or energy left to cook.  But at least these people can afford to go out and get a decent meal in a restaurant.


 


 


Maybe another contributing factor- single parents.  If one parent has to do it all, how much time or energy are they going to have left  for cooking?



There are definitely moms (and dads) who can't cook. There are still more moms and dads that don't cook with the goal of making a healthy meal. The goal is a tasty meal, and they can be very good at that, but healthy -- not necessarily. Fortunately, cooking is not hard to learn. I wonder if things like the Food TV and similar networks and programming have helped people learn to cook. I learned additional techniques from the Food network. The American palate has certainly expanded to embrace a wider variety of foods, seasonings and cooking styles. But poverty limits what you can do. The poor may not be able to afford seasonings and getting good cooking equipments is more difficult when you don't have money. Not saying it's impossible to cook a healthy meal if you're poor, but not so easy and may be next-to-impossible for some folks, like single parents you mention. Or if a family member has a health issue and needs meds and/or additional care... you might decide to buy cheap fast food for your family instead of buying better quality food so you can save money for meds and spend time caring for the ill person rather than cooking.

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3 years ago  ::  Aug 21, 2011 - 9:48PM #28
newsjunkie
Posts: 5,744

Aug 21, 2011 -- 5:35PM, jane2 wrote:


Aug 21, 2011 -- 4:49PM, DotNotInOz wrote:

While I agree with Templar that he's a least getting fat from more nourishing food, fat is simply fat.  He's likely better nourished overall than someone who packs on the pounds with twinkies, chocolate bars, beer, snack chips and lots of MickeyD's meals.  In terms of diseases fueled by excess weight, I'll vote with WG that he's likely not much healthier than my sample junkfood junkie.  



I would disagree. Type of nourishment does matter. Too much blue cheese in the salad dressing, etc. is not the same as a "twinky" diet. Mayo in the tuna salad adds calorie, tuna contains good protein, etc. Dipping freshly cooked lobster in melted butter occasionally is fine. Many of us eat lon strip steaks instead of DelMonico rib steaks.


Middle-aged weight gain has many causes. We know most of them. We can be vigilant without letting food rule our lives.


In truth, our society has shown little care for the poor in decades. Social services have been cut to the bone. I remember Robert Kennedy's shock at poverty in the South and elsewhere. He was murdered. And Ted Kennedy, the Great Lion of the Senate is gone, too. In the early 80's my younger daughter ran across a man with a sign "will work for food"; she took him othe nearest "fast food" restaurant and bought him a meal--she was running as training for xcountry, a freshman in high school.


Why not support more fresh veggie and fruit trucks that visit areas where these are not available?
Our national politics are bizarre to the max right now. Moderates of either stripe are sidelined. I am a moderate slightly left of center because I do believe I am my brother's keeper--liberal, intellectual Catholic.


 




I agree, Jane. Some people overeat but still aren't getting needed nutrients. Others overeat, but at least they are getting the nutrients their bodies need. I recall a recent study that found that even if women exercised and tried to eat a balanced diet and not overeat, they still gained about 5 lbs per decade due to the slowing of metabolic rate as we age. (I hope I'm recalling that correctly.) I exercise a lot now so that I can continue to eat a reasonable amount of healthy food and maintain my weight (which is not overweight, but close to the overweight boundary). I'm conscious of my BMI, my body-fat percentage, and make conscious decisions to eat more whole grains, less red meat, more fish, more fruits and vegetables, along with 4 to 5 hours of aerobic exercise and the same amount of strength training per week. All this and I lost a grand total of 2 lbs in a year. But I'm not gaining!!! Ahhh... the joys of aging!

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3 years ago  ::  Aug 21, 2011 - 10:19PM #29
jane2
Posts: 14,295

Aug 21, 2011 -- 9:48PM, newsjunkie wrote:


Aug 21, 2011 -- 5:35PM, jane2 wrote:


Aug 21, 2011 -- 4:49PM, DotNotInOz wrote:

While I agree with Templar that he's a least getting fat from more nourishing food, fat is simply fat.  He's likely better nourished overall than someone who packs on the pounds with twinkies, chocolate bars, beer, snack chips and lots of MickeyD's meals.  In terms of diseases fueled by excess weight, I'll vote with WG that he's likely not much healthier than my sample junkfood junkie.  



I would disagree. Type of nourishment does matter. Too much blue cheese in the salad dressing, etc. is not the same as a "twinky" diet. Mayo in the tuna salad adds calorie, tuna contains good protein, etc. Dipping freshly cooked lobster in melted butter occasionally is fine. Many of us eat lon strip steaks instead of DelMonico rib steaks.


Middle-aged weight gain has many causes. We know most of them. We can be vigilant without letting food rule our lives.


In truth, our society has shown little care for the poor in decades. Social services have been cut to the bone. I remember Robert Kennedy's shock at poverty in the South and elsewhere. He was murdered. And Ted Kennedy, the Great Lion of the Senate is gone, too. In the early 80's my younger daughter ran across a man with a sign "will work for food"; she took him othe nearest "fast food" restaurant and bought him a meal--she was running as training for xcountry, a freshman in high school.


Why not support more fresh veggie and fruit trucks that visit areas where these are not available?
Our national politics are bizarre to the max right now. Moderates of either stripe are sidelined. I am a moderate slightly left of center because I do believe I am my brother's keeper--liberal, intellectual Catholic.


 




I agree, Jane. Some people overeat but still aren't getting needed nutrients. Others overeat, but at least they are getting the nutrients their bodies need. I recall a recent study that found that even if women exercised and tried to eat a balanced diet and not overeat, they still gained about 5 lbs per decade due to the slowing of metabolic rate as we age. (I hope I'm recalling that correctly.) I exercise a lot now so that I can continue to eat a reasonable amount of healthy food and maintain my weight (which is not overweight, but close to the overweight boundary). I'm conscious of my BMI, my body-fat percentage, and make conscious decisions to eat more whole grains, less red meat, more fish, more fruits and vegetables, along with 4 to 5 hours of aerobic exercise and the same amount of strength training per week. All this and I lost a grand total of 2 lbs in a year. But I'm not gaining!!! Ahhh... the joys of aging!




Go for it, NJ. Be well and happy!!! Ya know I appalud joy in living.




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3 years ago  ::  Aug 22, 2011 - 8:30AM #30
DotNotInOz
Posts: 6,833
Perhaps you had a brain-fog moment when reading what I said, Jane, but I perceive us as agreeing.

I maintain that Templar is likely better nourished than one who has added the pounds via junkfood, but WG is still correct--body fat is still fat no matter how acquired, and too much is not a good thing.
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