Did you know today is National Food Day? Had no idea one existed until I flipped through the paper this morning in between clearing breakfast dishes and stuffing lunch boxes. My son’s standard fare is peanut butter and jelly on wheat bread, grapes and chips, sometimes a carrot or two. My daughter likes variety and went to school today with a lettuce salad, applesauce and popcorn. She’s a light eater and spends more time talking in the cafeteria than consuming food. I know because I’ve sat with her.
Anyway, back to National Food Day. According to their website, www.foodday.org, the goal is to encourage folks to “eat real” for one day. Sounds like a good plan. How many times have we heard our doctors, nutritionists, and mothers say “Eat your vegetables!”
In addition, the movement seeks to “strengthen and unify the food movement in order to improve our nation’s food policies.” Red flag. Policies. Now, I had to read on because you know what is coming.
“The foods we eat should bolster our health, but the contemporary American diet is actually contributing to several hundred thousand premature deaths from heart attack, stroke, diabetes, and cancer each year. What’s more, the way our food is produced is all too often harmful to farm and food workers, the environment, and farm animals. The American food system has created a diet of cheap, salty, overly processed packaged foods, high-calorie sugary drinks, and fast-food made of white bread, fatty grain-fed factory-farmed meat, and French fries.” (I added the bold print; just in case you didn’t catch that part.)
And there ya have it folks! We are unhealthy because of the way our food is produced not because we make the choice to put certain foods in our mouths.
The site concludes that Food Day is about providing safe, healthy, affordable options for all Americans regardless of race, age, income or geographic location. Amen to that!
And Amen to the American farmer who uses a vareity of production methods, historical knowledge and wisdom and new discoveries every day that will help us achieve this goal in the near future.