Friday, May 9, 2008

Yahoos

I've come across two rather mind-boggling articles on Yahoo recently:

1. Substituting chicken, fish, or vegetables for red meat can help combat climate change.

What the article says: It's not very clearly written, but I think the point is that it's better to eat non-red-meat foods than to eat locally grown red meat. The energy used to grow or to raise food is responsible for 83% of the resources used to get food on your plate, while the transportation part is only responsible for 11% of the resources.

Why it works my nerves: Learning about the environmental impact of eating meat was one of the reasons that I converted to vegetarianism...19 years ago now. This is not exactly news. Also, chicken is hardly the anti-red meat if we're talking about resources used to produce food. Vegetables, fruits, and grains are, of course, the best choice for resource-efficient food production. I wish the article had stated this instead of suggesting substituting meat for meat. Also, the article degrades the movement to buy food locally, saying the benefits to buying local are overblown. Maybe they are, if you don't care about supporting small farmers, but supporting Big Agriculture and some of its evil machinations is troubling to say the least.

2. Better weight loss through chemicals.

What the article says: Four ideas for 100-calorie snacks.

Why it works my nerves: Apart from the extremely annoying cutesy tone, this article gets to me because these snacks are mostly processed to the nth degree. Fat-free cool whip is not food and therefore not a snack. Peruse the ingredient list if you will:
WATER, CORN SYRUP, HYDROGENATED VEGETABLE OIL* (COCONUT AND PALM KERNEL OILS), HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP, LESS THAN 2% OF SODIUM CASEINATE (FROM MILK), NATURAL AND ARTIFICIAL FLAVOR, MODIFIED FOOD STARCH, XANTHAN AND GUAR GUMS, POLYSORBATE 60, POLYSORBATE 65, SORBITAN MONOSTEARATE, SODIUM HYDROXIDE, BETA CAROTENE (COLOR).

I will admit that the last "snack," broccoli nachos, has 2 out of three components that are actually food (broccoli and the corn chips which are processed but with a lighter touch). But who knows what's in the broccoli's cheese sauce.

Hey, Hungry Girl, if you want a 100 calorie snack, how about an apple? Or 2 cups of carrot sticks or strawberries? Or a small handful of almonds? Oh, never mind, I guess you're too busy trying to make cupcakes containing ingredients such as diet hot cocoa mix and "jet-puffed marshmallow creme." No wonder you're hungry.

8 comments:

DJ said...

I love your blog, btw - but yes, the reluctance of our society as a whole to embrace real food and to accept culpability for climate change as a direct result of our seemingly insatiable appetite for animal products is quite mind-boggling!

Melody Polakow said...

God, those snacks sound disgusting.. I love my 100 calorie snacks so much more and they make me feel GOOD!

Ruby Red Vegan said...

i totally agree - those 100 calorie packs are ridiculous, and they would just make me want to eat more! chemicals are not food!!

have you seen the cute shirt and bag designs from herbivore clothing company? they say "vegetarianism is environmentalism." i realllllly want one of those, because it's such a true statment.

Theresa said...

Love. this. post. <3

ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

Haha I loved your last line, "No wonder you're hungry."

It's so true! My dad was all excited today because he found 100-calorie twinkies at the store... but when he opened them up, they were the size of my thumb!

Monika K said...

Seriously. Why bother with the 100 calorie snacks if they're full of gross preservatives? How is that healthy?

Melody Polakow said...

Re your comment... I'm surprised... the pesto is still quite green Tuesday night! (I made it Sunday)

Rach-ums said...

Totally agree with you about the maet = global warming thing. It's so frustrating! People just don't want to see the connection.

Oh, and 100 cal snack packs are lame. Of course, if Tings had one I'd be all over it but eating them all in one sitting kind of defeats the purpose haha.