FOOD, FACTS and FADS

Exploring the sense and nonsense of food and health

Can You Cook?

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English: Native men cooking fish on a wooden f...

English: Native men cooking fish on a wooden frame over a fire. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Michael Pollan offers some sound advice on how to solve the obesity problem with it concomitant problems.  I don’t know if this simply would solve the problem; it could  help, but the food supply needs to be overhauled and attitudes need to change if that is possible with Big Ag calling the shots. People can still buy the packaged, boxed “food” and cook it at home for convenience which doesn’t come close to cooking “real” foods that are not processed and full of sugar, salt and fat.

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Please read a previous post called Back to the Kitchen?

Within that post is a link to “Teach Your Kids to Cook”.  Added to the problem is that  it is estimated that 28% of Americans cannot cook. This is not surprising in this era of fast foods, take-out foods, and convenience processed foods.  A new survey finds that eating at home is one of the surest ways to help you eat healthier.  But in the same survey of 1087 people, 28% of Americans said they don’t know how to cook.  What are their reasons?

  • More than half of them said a spouse or partner does the cooking.
  • 25% said they hate cleaning up the kitchen afterward.
  • 21% say they don’t have the time.
  • 65% say that going to the supermarket was too time consuming.

What does this say about our society?  We watch cooking shows by the hours and we have become cooking-watchers, not participators. We are food-obsessed but are not in control of our food choices.  How did this happen?  Have we lost our cooking gene?

We have known for quite a while that food preparation and purchasing skills have been stripped from school curricula – what ever happened to home economics?  But is this enough?  Children need to learn proper cooking skills starting in elementary schools and learning where our food comes from.  Generations of adults have already left education without learning to cook at school or at home and now think that all food comes in a package.  It’s no wonder that we’re unhealthy and a lot of us are overweight.

If you are cooking challenged:

  • Start simple- buy a cookbook that uses only 3-5 ingredients.
  • Read magazines such as Real Simple that usually promote simple meals.
  • Shop with a list to cut down supermarket time.
  • Cook one-pot meals to cut down kitchen cleanup.
  • Attend cooking demonstrations – they’re fun and you get to sample real foods.

Bon appétit!!!

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3 thoughts on “Can You Cook?

  1. You should develop a college course on basic cooking, kitchen food safety and teach it!

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  2. Thanks for the comment. How true that we find food everywhere we go and most is supporting the junk food path. I think the article came from the Huffington Post. Try to search and it should come up.

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  3. What a fabulous article. Do you have a link to this study? It’s really fascinating. I would have thought the stats would have been >28% can’t cook. I especially liked what you said about watching cooking shows, but not cooking. Also, how true it is we are ‘food obsessed’ and yet not in control of our food choices.

    This weekend I went furniture shopping. What did they have there? A free snack bar of all the healthies including buttered/salted popcorn, sodas and cookies. The only potentially healthy thing there were small sandwiches. That is the calling card of a food obsessed nation – a furniture shop with free (junk) food… wow.

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