We have a gathering at school called “Rise’n’Shine”. It takes place each Wednesday and Friday and includes announcements, recognitions, birthdays, weather report, word of the week, and “healthy or not?”. For the latter someone comes on stage and reads information about a specific food, then asks the student body the question and waits for a thumbs up or down sign. It’s a little confusing sometimes, like when the food was pizza. (Depends on the toppings, how much you eat, etc.) But maybe it prompts the kids to think a little about what they eat. I find myself thinking more and more about what I eat and where it comes from. I worry about germs. Maybe I’m getting the Howard Hughes syndrome. This morning I watched a report about food from China and how contaminated their water supply is and how low their standards are…I felt like jumping up to read the labels on all my food.
The truth is we know very little about how our food is actually grown or made or shipped or anything else about it except where it is located in our local super store. Even in a society where we are fearful of terrorists and random shootings we are surprisingly calm about popping almost anything into our mouths. I may check for cleanliness at my local restaurant, but I know nothing about the factory that chopped my frozen broccoli or bagged my salad. We live on faith. We trust people who trust people who trust other people. Every once in a while our faith is shaken by an outbreak of this or that. But let the dust settle and we’re all back at the salad bar munching on the fresh spinach. What else can we do?
I keep telling myself I can’t take this too seriously. I have enough to do when I’m choosing food. Is it healthy or not? Does it have trans fat? Artificial color? Is it low carb? low sugar? low salt? low fat? Is it going to give me a migraine? I have to stop having these thoughts about cleanliness and germs and contaminated water. I’ll start losing sleep and then how healthy will I be?