Thursday, 8 October 2009

Changing times

Back to everyone's favourite news[trigger warning, picture of c**e]paper; to be fair it is a good paper, in terms of product. Unfortunately its endless attempts to strike fear into it's audience by some new revelation of an on coming Armageddon, is grating.

The article in question is another gaining ground to ecksplane fatness.

Addiction. I know, I know; we are addicted to food. But  wait,  this is not about the necessity of it for our existence. It's about food manufacturers making it so tasty, using artificial chemicals, that;

))))))))we can't resist(((((((( 

According to David Kessler, who used to be the commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration;
it all comes down to the bliss point. ‘The right combination of tastes triggers a greater number of neurons, getting them to fire more,’

To be fair he says the blame game needs to end. Though I think he could have framed it around how a changing food environment requires different skills to negotiate our lucky world of plenty. Rather than behaving as if our will is being overthrown by chemical wizardry in the food lab-they wish. I find this the credulity of paranoia.

In the days of lack, we could feed by the clock and other outer dictates, now, we need to be more in touch with our own inner rhythms and hunger. 

Taking a more inner directed route. In the past of just enough or lack, those skills were cultivated by that, rather than us. Pleasure came from having something at all, when there's more choice, we can adjust from that scarcity mentality.

The usual pernicious classism rears it head, if you're poor your diet is liable to be worse, in what sense? Less money to shop for expensive snacks/short cuts made with better ingredients? As usual putting it on food depoliticises the conditions of poorer people, ignoring the fact that conditions overall often mitigate against health to a greater degree than others. The focus on food in this way, becomes churlish after a while.

There's a certain lack of proportion when he mentioned seeing fat people whilst visiting HIV clinics in South Africa. A fast food outlet has opened and the cheapest deals in the supermarkets, feature calorie dense foods. So people can afford to consume adequate calories.

I mean, he can't think poor people being fat is somehow worse than than HIV. As if its the poor of the developing world's duty to be slim.

Now with more, or at least choices and some room for manoeuvre, our pleasure will come more from matching our needs and wants better, to what we have access to. Nurturing our instincts and appetites well can be of the greatest joys of living, a spiritual thing even. But that it should involve trust, positive and holistic focus, not fear or neurosis, form a place of love not hate.

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