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Fast Food For Thought

Posted 11-21-2008 at 07:42 AM by shastastar
Updated 01-05-2009 at 05:33 PM by shastastar
This is for all those of you out there who every once in a while crave fast food which seems to be readily available in almost every corner of the US now. I realize that many of us here reading this are all ready aware of this knowledge and among the converted so to speak, but this week, I felt the need to rant and put all my thoughts on in together in one place.

Matter cannot me created or destroyed, it only changes form. One of the simple laws of physics. Think about that. The fried chicken or the burrito is not destroyed it changes form. That oily deep fried gooey mess of what was once an animal in a crowded cage changes form. You ingest its energy. That stress of that chicken not even having enough room to turn around in its cage becomes part of you. All that oil in that hot instant deep frier, that cooking oil is ingested. That batter mix that is ground out by machine and produced in bulk, that whole process becomes a part of you. You justify it by saying, well I get my chicken grilled not breaded, well guess what, they add sugar and glaze over the chicken before it even gets to the restaurant, to make it more satisfying. They also put oil on the grill to make sure that you get plenty of that as well, so don’t think you are saving much ( other than the breading) by getting the grilled chicken. It still becomes you, that oil, grease, extreme yang protein makes up your blood.

The sour cream, powdered avocado guacamole, the tortilla with sugar added to make it more addictive and get that short term sugar rush all becomes part of you. Not to mention the meat ground to a pulp and taken in only the cheapest parts that they can get away with coated in sugar and spices to make it more addictive. The energy in that burrito is the stressed out employee at Taco Bell that had to produce it in less than four minutes to make sure that their timings were correct, so that they can keep their job. The energy in that burrito is from the countless machines that milked the cow, that pasteurized and separated the milk, and then from the cow itself, injected with hormones so that it produces more milk and for longer. All that energy going into your food and then becoming your body.

And who really cares if they use trans fats or not? That is just the tip of the ice berg, what with all the other energies, oils etc. Oil and fat is a more concentrated form of energy, thus it is higher in calories, harder to break down, and harder to store. So who cares trans fat, low fat, non fat (more sugar to make up the taste) it’s all the same in the end. You thought the cigarette companies knew what they were doing when they change their formulas of tobacco to make / keep customers coming back for more. The fast food companies have that nailed to a science. That is what it is the science of fast food. Frozen pre-prepared, quick prep, all made and out the window in less than six minutes, and by McDonalds standards, six minutes is a failure. Their goal is to serve you and have you on your way in less than one minute once you stop at the pick up window. Cooked, wrapped, bagged and out the window. You don’t even have to leave your car isn't that great? Or is it really....

All of that fast food, stored in cysts, tumors, hardened arteries, anywhere your body can pack it away for years and years until suddenly you have worked so hard, that you can’t do it anymore. Here we’ll give you cancer and wrap it up in a neat little convenient package for you.

And don’t even get me started on the soda companies.

When I was describing my former diet coke addiction to someone they said to me “What is it about Diet Coke that makes people drink like 8 cans a day? Everyone I know who drinks it drinks a lot? " This got me thinking. Everyone I knew that was into diet coke was really into diet coke to the point where they almost always had a can in their hand. I had stopped when I was pregnant, (mainly because caffeine started making me nauseas) but what was it that made diet coke so wonderfully addictive. Was it the cute Santa packs that come out November 1 of every year to get us thinking about Christmas? This being my first non diet coke year I know when I saw the Santa 12 packs, I really wanted some. What is it about that shiny silvery can and those snow flakes? Is it the aspartame? Probably not, because almost all diet soda has aspartame as a sweetener. Is it the ritual? Well ritual plays a part in any sort of dependence, but this was overwhelming. Or is it something in the proprietary chemical formula that made me want to drink it all the time. This is my guess. It is also my guess that coke-a-cola tests their formulas on mice or some other hopeless animal to see which formulas the mice keep going after and drink the most of. Otherwise how would they know? There has to be some sort of study that says this formula over this other one that is not as addictive. There was an article recently where Pepsi and Coke agreed to stop directly funding animal testing for their products to test perception and support their health claims, except where they have to test for product safety (and whose to say that while they are testing for product safety they can’t also compare the various addictive properties of specific formulas).


Does anyone remember when big tobacco used to do research to promote health claims in the 1950s???? It’s simple we moved on from poisonous highly developed chemically and genetically modified tobacco addiction to poisonous, highly developed, chemically modified soda addiction. Oh and one very special ingredient that is in most cola type sodas ( not to that mention their pH is in the 2-3 range higly acidic)….. Phosphoric acid and do you know what that does? It eats your bones pure and simple, the calcium leaches right to that phosphoric acid bonds with it and leaves your body leaving you weaker than you were before you drank it, but still craving and wanting more.

Many food companies similar to many cigarette companies engage in abusive, sado-masochistic behavior (here this is really bad for you but you are going to love it, and be begging for and craving more of it). Is that what you really want to do to yourself? Engage in a behavior where over time you repeat the behavior you are destroying yourself from the inside out. No wonder we don’t have any self esteem anymore. No wonder we are so depressed as a culture and on Prozac. We are not loving and caring for ourselves with our food and what we drink. We are destroying ourselves.

Think back to the pioneer days. Was there a taco bell around the corner or did mom / dad prepare whatever food they had in the cabin? It was prepared with love; it was nourishing and life affirming. Did those meals conform to the USDA food pyramid and were the vitamin fortified? Probably not. Were those meals made and created out of love / concern / the necessity to survive? Or were they created out of the need to sell more products, to gain and retain customers, and to give a customer a temporary sugar high? You be the judge.

Morgan Spurloc proved all of what I am saying in a very personal way in his movie Supersize Me, where he ate nothing but McDonald’s food for 90 days. The backlash was that people justified where they were eating by saying for a while, well, I’ll eat at Burger King instead, because that was McDonalds, or I don’t eat at McDonald’s all the time, I eat at Taco bell some also. Much like Dirk relates that Steve McQueen justified cheating on his diet while losing his battle with cancer, we as a culture justify our ongoing habits however we have to feed our chemical addiction to this food. This now genetically and chemically modified fast food that gives us immediate convenience and gratification in exchange for ill health, depression and cancer in the long run.

Love yourself, heal yourself, from the inside out. You don’t deserve a break today, at least not the one McDonalds tried to sell everyone in the 1970s, you deserve to nourish yourself and make and create your own food from organic ingredients. The only thing we need a break from today is the cycle of commuting from one drive thru to another. So do yourself and your kids a favor build self esteem from the inside out, with that fresh pioneer style food cooked with love

Cheers Hope Faith and Love
Total Comments 16


  • Old Comment
    Just an aside here Since I switched from cigarettes to (mini) cigars, I've definitely noticed a difference in the cravings. Cigars don't have all the chemicals added to them; instead of getting antsy when I get low, I casually note that I need to pick some up in a day or so. Instead of grabbing for the cigarette pack in the mornings, I go about my chores first and then sit back to enjoy it at a leisurely pace. And instead of the cigarette burning up at the speed of light, the cigar politely goes into hibernation until I'm ready for the next puff. All those nifty little chemicals added to cigarettes to make you want them so much and make them burn up so fast - I've gone from 3 packs of cigarettes a day to less than 1 pack of cigars.

    Posted 11-21-2008 at 09:52 AM by ostarella ostarella is offline
  • Old Comment
    This link basically gives an overview of the phenomenon you are talking about, they add cigarette additives to make the cells in the lungs open up to absorb more nicotine. They also change the formulations, ( lower the nicotine ) from time to time, to encourage an increase in consumption to get the same levels of nicotine.


    Good for you kicking the cigarettes star!!!!
    Posted 11-21-2008 at 05:56 PM by shastastar shastastar is offline
  • Old Comment
    I love my mum's cooking. I should 'grow-up' but I refuse to. My parents both lost their fathers as children, and I read about Dirk's loss with great sadness, knowing from my own parents that these losses change a person forever. One day (hopefully a long time from now), I may experience such loss, so I've always thought it best to enjoy what (and whom) we have NOW. Hence I love my mum's cooking.

    I've tried to follow her receipes but somehow it doesn't taste the same. I'm sure she hasn't missed out any secret ingredients, so what's going wrong? I've decided what's missing when I cook her receipes is herself. 'Positive energy' Dirk half joked he had cooked some food for Shilpa with this in CBB, and thinking on this idea, I agree. When we're ill, nothing tastes quite the same as 'mother's chicken soup' made with the extra special ingredient, a mother's love. All that positive 'energy' stirred into the dish.

    Ostarella - I thought of this when you blogged about your brother wanting to come round for your home cooking for Thanksgiving! I think it is a compliment to you that he feels this way?

    SS - Just as food can be imparted with 'positive energy', I agree that fast food often imparts 'negative' energy too.
    Posted 11-24-2008 at 09:58 AM by deebeelicious deebeelicious is offline
  • Old Comment
    Btw, cigarettes have sugar in them as well. I can't find an old link I had, and got to go now, but here's a quick link

    I'm sure more can be found on the internet too!
    O - I'm sure switching to cigars is better!
    Posted 11-24-2008 at 10:04 AM by deebeelicious deebeelicious is offline
  • Old Comment
    So true about mom's cooking, or a good friend cooking for you. After my littlest was born one of my best friends cooked a meal for us ( well it lasted several meals but ...)
    and brought it over. Even though it wasn't something I would have cooked it was so good and so warm and so wonderfully filling. And you are right DeeBee it was full of love, just like your mom's cooking. It's amazing what you can do for people with food, and when you feed someone, your energy is in them, with them.... isn't that wonderful???
    Great addition....

    And yes there is a TON on the internet about all the additives in cigarettes, less so on the additives / pH of soda. IMHO Starbucks is also guilty of this when they roast their coffee, using specific additives / blends that others don't use.... does it make it more addictive ??? I don't know, but I sure know a lot of people are totally loyal to Starbucks...

    Take Care my Kamikaze Cowgirls

    Posted 11-24-2008 at 04:13 PM by shastastar shastastar is offline
  • Old Comment
    I didn't know about the 'special additives' in Starbucks!

    I'm not so hot on roasted foods since recently chemists have found 'acrylamide' is formed when food is roasted or barbecued. They hadn't found it before because it is quite volatile and they needed v sensitive gas chromatography equipment (or the like) etc to detect it, which they only invented recently. Unfortunately acrylamide is a powerful carcinogen. (I think I posted this on the StW section.) Hence another reason why I don't drink coffee so much and stick to teas. But of course, each to their own!
    Posted 11-25-2008 at 02:56 AM by deebeelicious deebeelicious is offline
  • Old Comment
    The next generation will be the first to live shorter than their parents if they don't change their ways, because of junk food.

    But politicians aren't ready to stop the incidious marketing and exploitation of the food industry yet!
    Posted 11-26-2008 at 04:48 AM by deebeelicious deebeelicious is offline
  • Old Comment
    The more you find out about our modern (and in this case mostly) Western food and eating habits, the more you get the feel of having landed in a very, very bad B-SF-movie ....

    Afraid I have not shaken all bad food habits yet, still pretty much hooked on coffee (and chocolate). Acrylamide, eh? Not too crazy on bancha tea, but I will give it another try.
    Posted 11-26-2008 at 07:34 AM by asmay asmay is offline
  • Old Comment
    Franken foods !!!! Between GM foods and additives. We are eating chemicals. YUCK!!!!! Give me some brown rice any day over all of that!!!!!

    Here is a list according to the US government of all the FDA approved food additives that are GRAS or Generally Regarded as Safe YUCK!!!!!!


    Personally I don't want those things added to my food!!!

    Posted 12-01-2008 at 12:56 PM by shastastar shastastar is offline
  • Old Comment
    SS thanks for the link for the fda additives page.
    I only scanned down through some of the 'A's and noticed 'acetic acid' there. This is obviously an additive in pickles, 'vinegar'. There are many 'additives' listed that are not 'dangerous'. I want to clear up (IMHO) that just because something is 'added' to food, does not make the meal harmful to eat.
    The main problem is that people aren't cooking at home from mainly fresh or dried ingredients. 'Ready-made' meals from supermarkets are made perhaps 2 weeks before the person eats it. All the freshness and 'vitality' of the food is lost - imagine trying to eat a meal you cooked and left in your fridge for 2 weeks, yuk! So to make the food vaguely palatable extra preservatives, and yes additives are added, extra salt & sugar too, to make it edible. This is the problem, and yest the additives used to extend shelf-life are (to me) the most suspect.
    Posted 12-05-2008 at 05:05 AM by deebeelicious deebeelicious is offline
  • Old Comment
    If you don't mind, I'm going to refer back to the 'mom's cooking' we mentioned above. I found this amazing article today. To me it is truly astounding and has potentially significant Public Health consequences ...


    Here's some snippets from it;
    "Happiness is infectious and can "ripple" through social groups ...

    "A friend who becomes happy and lives less than a mile away increases your likelihood of happiness by 25%, the British Medical Journal reported.

    "Professor Andrew Steptoe ... said: 'It makes intuitive sense that if people around you are happy that might have an impact on your own happiness. What's a bit more surprising is that it's not just the people who you closely come into contact with but people a step removed as well.' He said the work had implications for public health.

    "'Happiness does seem to be associated with protective effects on health. If happiness is indeed transmitted through social connections, it could indirectly contribute to social transmission of health,' he said."
    What this means to me is that 'happiness' or 'good vibes' etc have been PROVEN to work! When our friends and family (f&f) are happy, it helps become happy too. And so I immediately think of the opposite, perhaps if f&f are sad, that impacts us too.

    In olden days people might have described this as some kind of 'chi' energy. Today we say it is an 'emotion'. But it seems to act like a 'virus' that is 'infectious'.

    I think this work also hints at why known prayer helps too with healing. Major studies have shown that when a person (and those treating that person) are unaware of whether strangers are praying for the health, there is not significant impact.

    BUT, when a person KNOWS they are being prayed for, it has been shown to help them improve. Why? Possibly it's part of the placebo effect. Now, with the first study above, I wonder if something similar to the spreading of happiness also is at work here?
    OK, sorry I went off on a tangent, but the reason, to bring it back to this blog, is that here's science starting to 'hint' at why 'mom's cooking' might help when a person is in need of wellbeing (or as SS used, a friend's cooking).

    Good vibrations really do work!
    Posted 12-05-2008 at 05:19 AM by deebeelicious deebeelicious is offline
  • Old Comment
    Dee Bee -

    I think that it is true that a number of food additives like acetic acid ( vinegar) that you mentioned are fine. But then there are ones like ammonium persulfate which is used to etch (dissolve) copper off of printed circuit boards. Ammonium persulfate is also used to catalyze ( help ) the reaction for making polyacrylimide ( plastic) which I am guessing is why it is considered a safe food additive. They are regarding the amount that might be left over on a plastic bag or frozen food container as safe.

    This is a strong chemical, and you are right, really don't know what we are ingesting anymore in our frozen meals or otherwise and that most of this stuff is not good over time for us. The vitality of our food is extremely important as well as you mentioned. There are all kinds of preservatives, cleaning agents, chemical residues, waste products, etc in our food supply now that simply were not there 50 years ago.

    I am just unsure what amount if any would be a good amount of ammonium persulfate to ingest. And even better it becomes soluble in cold water. So plastic combined with frozen food or a cold drink... Lovely.....

    I loved the article from the BBC. I totally and completely believe in that. It is so amazing when science works to prove something that is empirically common sense. I really enjoy learning about that. Spread the love by cooking, prayer, and good vibes!!!! And hey if it is placebo effect or the mind working to cure something who cares? The positive end result is the same!!!!

    Great research / comments DeeBee!!!!

    Peace Hope Faith Love SS

    Posted 12-06-2008 at 07:33 AM by shastastar shastastar is offline
    Updated 12-06-2008 at 07:43 AM by shastastar
  • Old Comment
    Just out of curiosity, I looked up vinegar to see how it's made. In a nutshell, it's made from the oxidation of ethanol in wine, cider, beer, fermented fruit juice, or nearly any other liquid containing alcohol. In other words, it's a natural product. Some other additives - as mentioned, to keep things fresher longer, improve color, etc - are basically from the chemist's lab. I guess that's the sort of thing I look for - if the list of additives is filled with words I can't even pronounce, it probably isn't good for me. But then that's probably why I tend to get lost in any discussions of nutrition - talking about enzymes and acids and all this other "stuff" - just tell me cashews increase the chemicals needed to do such and so and if that's what I need, I'll eat more cashews. I guess I'm too right-brain...
    Posted 12-06-2008 at 08:15 AM by ostarella ostarella is offline
  • Old Comment
    Here's a couple of book reviews which may be of interest to those who've read and enjoyed this blog!

    "In Defence of Food: The Myth of Nutrition and the Pleasures of Eating," by Michael Pollan.

    Here's some 'rules' he came up with, which I've copied from a reviewer's comments from the amazon page ...
    Rule No. 1 - 'Eat food'. (Meaning proper food made from proper ingredients instead of food products made from everything else. Homemade cake instead of 'diet' cake bars.)

    'Don't Eat Anything Your Great-Grandmother Wouldn't Recognise As Food' With the additional comment, 'Don't eat anything incapable of rotting is another personal policy you might consider adopting'.

    'Avoid Food Products Containing Ingredients That Are A) unfamiliar, B) unpronounceable, C) more than five in number, or that include D)high-fructose corn syrup.'

    'You Are What You Eat Eats Too. That is, the diet of the animals we eat has a bearing on the nutritional quality and healthfulness, of the food itself, whether it is meat or milk or eggs.'

    'Do All Your Eating At A Table. No, a desk is not a table!'
    I love this book just from his rules!

    Posted 12-06-2008 at 08:20 AM by deebeelicious deebeelicious is offline
  • Old Comment
    2nd book review!

    "Swindled: From Poison Sweets to Counterfeit Coffee - The Dark History of the Food Cheats," by Bee Wilson

    Again, I've nicked some comments from an amazon reviewer!
    She reminds us that attempts to "taint" food with false ingredients are almost as old as human history: there have always been greed and avarice, and food sellers have always been out for a quick buck. This historical and sociological awareness allows her to put her finger on precisely what is distinctive about modern food scares and modern junk food.

    Wilson makes a convincing case that we in the west, perhaps especially in Britain (for distinctive historical reasons), have lost even a concept of what real food should be: what, for instance, are the proper ingredients of a loaf of bread. ... If you have any interest in what you eat, you have to read this book; buying a loaf of bread will never be the same. I am not a foodie or a food history buff, but I found this book totally gripping, both as an account of food, and also as a study in human nature.
    When I see reports of the food contamination in China I'm sad and know that China is becoming, like Britain, Industrialised to the extent that they have removed themselves from the cooking process. Whenever we leave our cooking up to someone else, there'll always be some greedy business out there to provide cheap, nasty, adulterated, contaminated, additived food for us!
    Posted 12-06-2008 at 08:26 AM by deebeelicious deebeelicious is offline
  • Old Comment
    Nice reads DeeBee!!! I agree about China.... they are becoming industrialized. There was a great Charlie Chaplin silent film about this back in the day about industrialization and its resulting disconnect from mankind "Modern Times" where he gets caught in the cogs of the machine at one point. It was made in the 1930s but still has a great deal of relevance in today's world as we have become so disconnected from what we eat.

    I like those rules from the first book. You know twinkies don't rot LOL Do they have twinkies in the UK? I am not sure, if it's called something else I will figure it out.....
    Peace Hope Faith Love and water

    Posted 12-08-2008 at 08:31 AM by shastastar shastastar is offline
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