Local Food Systems

We Need To Get Kids Fat

Now that I have your attention, let me start with this:

Good, quality, natural fats are absolutely essential to the growth, development, and preservation of the human body and the human brain. And we, as a community, need to embrace local, natural diets that support getting essential and natural fats into the bodies and brains of the generation upcoming (as well as ourselves).

And, one should not consume only fat (personal responsibility always embraces moderation) – it is pertinent to have a diet with high-quality proteins and carbohydrates as well. But I do think that many people, especially kids, are devoid of foods that are dense in nutrients, proteins, and high-quality fats – and that is a cause for disease, and for the problems we see with behavioral issues and depression.

There are: Saturated Fats, Monounsaturated Fats, and Polyunsaturated Fats. All of these are natural, and produced (found) in nature. Saturated fats have long been demonized as the culprit of disease, but this is not the case (quality butter is actually good for you, margarine is not; quality eggs are also very good for you in moderation).

Trans-fats are one of the worst culprits in today’s society, and although many labels claim to have “Zero grams trans fats”, they are actually lying – if there is .5 grams or less, then the label can say zero. The problem is that “.5” is not zero. And these man-made fats are detrimental to the human body – they increase the bad cholesterol in our bodies while also lowering the good cholesterol. Trans-fats are the type fats that should be chastised – many other fats are very, very good for you (for digestion, your organs, your skin, your nervous system, and more).

Thanks to the federal government, we have the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), which has come up with a guideline of what we should eat. Now, this guideline could be influenced by political lobbying and studies conducted and made possible by the special interest groups that benefit from such – so we should think for ourselves a bit too, and do research and reading on our own about our health. We can take control of what we eat – and we can work on knowing the people who produce our food (whether they are local or not).

Many parents are having issues feeding their kids the high-quality foods that they would like to, and many lunch-lines in public schools are serving products that are devoid of nutrients. The little experience I have with trying to get local foods to market, shows the even eliminating bureaucracy in the school systems (including having to follow federal guidelines for kids’ lunches) would help get kids better food (e.g. if local farmers are willing to sell products to their local schools, then why can’t we make this happen faster?). It will take time, but we need to work on getting our kids higher-quality food – including high-quality fats that are going to help their bodies and brains develop in a healthy way.

I am working my way through a book called “Nourishing Traditions” by Sally Fallon – and it has a great outline of the components of our food, including high-quality fats, proteins, and carbohydrates (produce, legumes and grains). There are studies, antidotes, and recipes, and a great way to start learning about the “politically incorrect” diet. There are more books too that I will continue to reference – look online, go to a bookstore, and start to take back your power as a consumer by changing what you eat.

 

 

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