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Posts Tagged ‘Health’

“The logic is pretty obvious,” said retired Army Brig. Gen. Clara Adams-Ender. “The troops need to be in excellent physical condition because of the demands of the important jobs they do in defense. Rigorous physical and mental standards are critical if we are to maintain the fighting readiness of our military.”

Makes sense to me.  This was said at a press conference by a member of “Mission: Readiness, a group of retired admirals, generals, and other senior military leaders.”

An interesting idea would be for the military to offer a fat fighting pre-boot camp… boot camp!  Isn’t one particular incentive for young – underprivileged – high school graduates to join the military that they will be given job training and assistance for college?  I don’t see why offering to get them into shape wouldn’t be a good angle.  I think it would be great if we started seeing commercials for the Army or Navy that basically demonstrated it as a fat camp, that also turned us into some sort of hero by letting us serve our country while battling the bulge.  Pun intended.  I could see that being a pretty tempting notion for a lot of young people who just need someone to yell at them when they don’t feel like doing push-ups.  I don’t really see that type of promotion much different than one that claims you will receive financial assistance for school.  Both are just incentives, and different people want different things in life.

I’m not sure if I’m sold on the idea that because “27 percent of young adults are medically ineligible for the military”, that we are actually less safe.  I mean, I definitely can’t imagine trekking around all day on foot, carrying 50 pounds of gear and another many pounds of excess fat, and still being on top of my game when it comes to ‘fighting the enemy’.  However, I think some people’s ideas of what makes us safe are a little skewed.  The U.S. does, afterall, spend about as much on its military than the rest of the world combined, and yet a large section of Americans still feel unsafe.

Putting the politics of foreign policy and military spending aside, I really like the angle these retired military leaders are taking by not just saying Americans are too fat to protect themselves, but actually suggesting/targeting something specific like school lunch programs, like those that serve pizza for freaking breakfast.

“We cannot wait until our young adults reach enlistment age to do something about it,” said retired Navy Rear Adm. James Barnett Jr. “By that time, they may have already developed a chronic and lifelong weight problem.” […] “If we do something about it, school can become a terrific environment for proper meals.”

I found this point in the article particularly interesting:

The retirees referred to a similar push military leaders made in 1945, when concerns about poor nutrition in potential recruits resulted in the creation of a national school lunch program.

So the school lunch program that serves sloppy joe’s and strawberry sugar milk was a result of a similar proposal?  I think that because the result of those suggestions has unfortunately turned into a travesty of nutrition, that it may have bitten the military leaders in the ass.  I’m curious of the exact concerns they had in the 40’s that caused them to speak up back then.  I wonder how those concerns compare to the ones that exist today, amidst our obesity epidemic and all…  when most major diseases that cause premature death or poor quality of life are lifestyle diseases, largely attributable to poor diet.

With junk food in the cafeteria, physical education programs being scrapped all over the place, and school funding in general seemingly going down at every turn, I still think the school’s are a great place to start.  Good job, Mission: Readiness!

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McBloggenstein officially endorses this new flavored infant formula:

Get ’em started early!

From the makers of Bacon Salt.

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Jamie’s got balls.

(The show premiered last night.  You can watch it here on Hulu.)

I can’t imagine doing what he is doing.  This show is a great example of when someone is faced with the challenge of trying to change the mindset of a group of people for their own good, that person walks the fine line of being seen as either someone that is trying to help, or as an ass that thinks they know better and are just telling others what to do because they are too stupid to figure it out.

For this case, however, I think it’s a little bit of both.  I don’t think Jamie’s an ass, but I do think he is trying to help, and I also think he knows better than them.  Of course these people don’t know what’s good for them.  That’s not me or Jamie being an ass, that’s just a fact.  As he says at the beginning of the episode (when he is being interviewed by the radio dj), he is there because of a statistic, not because he thinks poorly of them or is there to poke fun.  That statistic (that Huntington West Virginia is one of the unhealthiest cities in the country) proves one simple, cold, hard, fact…  that the people there would rather satisfy their taste-buds and continue poor habits than live vibrant, long lives. 

I loved that he told the mother of that family that she is killing her kids.  No, it’s not because I like to see people cry, it’s because he was blunt, and so right.  It drew a strong emotion out of her, which I think is sometimes necessary for people to truly realize what they are doing.  In a way, to wake them up.

Something else I loved?  The look that surly lunch lady gave him when he called her a lunch lady.  I can’t believe she shook her head when he told the kitchen staff of the elementary school that he was on their side.  Yeah, he’s just there to eff with them and have a laugh…

It’s too bad people’s ego’s are too big to see what’s hanging off their bodies staring them in the face.

Pizza for breakfast?  Pink milk?  Seriously?

What do you think about this show?  Will these hard-heads realize he is really there to help, and can they be helped?

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Food Inc 

This is definitely one of those films that not many people would want to see, but everyone really really should NEEDS to see it.  I’m not just talking for their own good, but also for the good of other people, and even the planet itself.  It cracks me up that the kinds of images shown and points made in the film cause most people to look the other way, perhaps even more than before, or they avoid watching things like this altogether for fear that they will not want to continue to eat what they like. 

What kind of thinking is this??  How could you not want to know where your food comes from?  If someone is worried that they will be grossed out by something in the movie, then really that’s even more reason to see it.  Pretending that all food is produced in a clean and healthy environment does not make it true, and in fact will probably make it further and further from the truth.  Knowing the truth can help make things better, and by making better choices we can influence the type of food production industries that will thrive and actually want to make us healthy, rather than fat and sick.

Contributors/Interviewees of this film include:

Michael Pollan – author of The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals, and the sequal, In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto.

Eric Schlosser – author of Fast Food Nation.

VERY unfortunately, the movie was not widely released.  Go here to see if it is playing in your area.

A bit about the film from its website:

“In Food, Inc., filmmaker Robert Kenner lifts the veil on our nation’s food industry, exposing the highly mechanized underbelly that has been hidden from the American consumer with the consent of our government’s regulatory agencies, USDA and FDA. Our nation’s food supply is now controlled by a handful of corporations that often put profit ahead of consumer health, the livelihood of the American farmer, the safety of workers and our own environment.”

“Food, Inc. reveals surprising—and often shocking truths—about what we eat, how it’s produced, who we have become as a nation and where we are going from here.”

You can find a trailer for the movie there, or on a previous post I did.

Take the whole family.  Seriously.  This is a subject people should be talking about and concerned over.

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bananas

I’ve got a guest post up today on Disease Proof spouting my love for bananas.

Here’s an excerpt:

“Bananas are the ultimate convenience food! As far as fruit goes (or for that matter any “snack” food) bananas require no washing, cutting, peeling, storage, or packaging. They come in their own biodegradable wrapper that can be removed by hand! What more could you ask for in a convenience food?

Just don’t leave the peel lying on the ground. Comedy and/or bodily injury may occur!”

Click on through to read the rest.  Thanks!

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Comic

Your body craves what you give it.  Think about that statement…

You’re not depriving yourself of anything if you get out of the

CRAVE-bad-food—–>EAT-bad-food cycle.

When trying to get out of the habit of eating junk foods, it will take some time, but slowly you will begin to enjoy the taste of things that you may not have before…  or that you assumed you wouldn’t (even though you’ve never tried it).

If you begin transitioning into eating better,  you will actually learn that those foods that used to satisfy a hunger, or a craving, or boredom, will no longer be able to do that because of how your mind and your tastes have changed.  If you never stop having your bag of peanut M&M’s at 3pm everyday, or if you stop but don’t try hard enough to find a healthy alternative, you’ll never find out if there can be something better for you that you will enjoy.

Those salty and sugary snacks can begin to actually lose their appeal.  That may seem hard to imagine if you love your Doritos or your Snickers bar habit, but that just proves how mental that challenge really is.  The mind can be changed.  Cravings can be changed.

[image via]

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Hey now!

On Hulu right now, there are two really good movies that everyone should see.

The first one is Super Size Me, with Morgan Spurlock, which if you haven’t seen yet…  Have you been under a rock?

Although I have seen it, I enjoyed watching it again.  There were a lot of good scenes that I had forgotten about.  Sure it’s a bit extreme just to prove a point that some may not even think pertains to them, and people say that “of course the food made him feel like crap because he ate so much of it.  It’s fine in moderation!”  The people that think this way are forgetting that just because someone doesn’t eat a bad food everyday doesn’t mean they will be immune to that foods effects on the body, it will just take longer to occur than a concentrated McD’s binge like Spurlock’s.  The thing is that study after study has shown that the more fast food a person eats, the likelihood and quantity of diseases becomes greater and greater, and it doesn’t take as much of the poor foods to increase their chances as they would like to believe.  It’s really not much different than slowly getting lead poisoning from steady long-term exposure.

As a side note, Spurlock also has a TV series called 30 Days in which he or other people commit to experiencing a completely different lifestyle for 30 days.  Some examples include Morgan and his wife attempting to live on minimum wage, a homophobic straight man living in the gayest part of San Francisco, and an atheist living with a Christian family, etc…

The second movie is The Future of Food.  I’ve only started this one recently and finished about half of it.  So far there are some startling points about how large companies can have patents on seeds and even legally force farmers to grow (or not grow) specific crops and even particular strains of those crops, which in turn largely influences what food producers bring cheaply into our food cupboards.  It’s just one of those movies that everyone should see, if only to be aware, but potentially to help influence their choices which can in turn support or not support certain industries. 

That reminds me of a new movie called Food, Inc. that just came out.  Check out the trailer:

I really like the point made that I’m casting a vote for a particular food company or type of food each time I put something into my grocery cart.  If we stop giving votes to the big industries that are making us sick and fat, either they won’t be around much longer, or they may start to change the way they operate.

Here’s another trailer:

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