There’s a great post today over at Screaming Fat Girl. The author is adjusting to life back in the US after “two decades of living in an Asian culture.”
My thought after reading the post was that it reminded me of the apocryphal story of the frog and the boiling water. Unlike those of us who’ve spent the last twenty years here seemingly not noticing the changes in our food supply, SFG has been dropped into the boiling water:
My husband and I have not had the time or mobility to visit a lot of the typical shopping haunts of people who live on lower incomes, but the biggest shock for us came when we made a trip to Target. … I was stunned by how cheaply one could eat food that wasn’t really food and how much pricier it was to buy real food. It’s not that you can’t buy “real” food cheaply, but that it’s far less attractive, far more troublesome, and requires pretty sophisticated knowledge of cooking.
Before you say, well, she was shopping at Target, she points out that this is not a phenomenon reserved for price-conscious shoppers. It’s really very much reflected in how our busy lives are making it far more likely we’ll choose processed ‘heat and eat’ foods over real, whole foods (emphasis mine):
I’m shocked at how easy it is to eat poorly and how even people who are educated are eating badly and convincing themselves otherwise. Lara bars, sugar-packed Greek yogurt (and most of it is!), frozen and canned processed vegetarian meals, and protein powder-based drinks and smoothies don’t make your diet a good one. It’s still not “real” food for the most part.
I’m certainly not one to pine about the “lost art of cooking”, but it has really come home to me that people have lost the art of eating well. …
The sickness of America’s food culture is so deep and wide that I have to wonder if there will ever be a cure.