Exploring the sense and nonsense of food and health


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English: Bottle, french cheeses and glass of C...

English: Bottle, french cheeses and glass of Château Lafite Rothschild (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

By now, most people have heard of the French Paradox.  Oddly enough, despite their attachment to the finer aspects of eating, they are some of the healthiest and perhaps guilt-free people on the Earth.  Their diet is relatively high in saturated fat; they have HDL cholesterol levels and rates of high blood pressure similar to North Americans and they smoke more.  But according to the American Heart Association, out of thirty-five selected countries, France reports death rates from heart disease that are among the lowest in the world.

What are their secrets?

Moderate drinking – they adhere to the one to two drinks a day recommended habit.They eat lots of fruits and vegetables – generally about four or more servings of vegetables a day.

They traditionally do not snack  or diet – they generally eat their main meal in the middle of the day.

If they do gain a few pounds, they rarely practice extreme diets.  They merely make small changes here and there, like declining the cheese course or eating their baguette without butter.

For more French lessons:


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