Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is

Winter finally came to Florida last week. Chef and I love winter in all of its desolate glory, and I for one was glad to return home to a normal temperature for the season. This week has been a lot of catching up after being gone, and to be honest I am feeling a little exhausted. The fact that I decided to cut caffeine totally out of my diet for the remainder of my pregnancy has only compounded my lack of energy.

Last night my Aunt Nan came over for a glass of wine. There are few better ways to relish exhaustion than with a glass of wine, and there are few things I enjoy more than sharing great conversation over vino. My aunt had recently seen the movie Food Inc. and was struck by the state of our food policy in this country. So much so that she actually watched it 3 times to garner as much info as possible.

Aunt Nan has been a vegetarian for as long as I can remember, and what really hit her was the GMO factor in all the soy she eats. Her husband, Uncle Geno, has been working in Pakistan for the past 3 years and she was on the phone with him explaining all the terrible information she had learned. He asked her a question that she didn't know the answer to..."Do they know what the effects of eating GMOs are on the human body?"
She asked me this question last night, and I responded that it is all such relatively new technology that it is probably too soon to really tell what the cumulative effects will be.

That evening, after she left I was reading the Huffington Post online, which I do everyday periodically to stay updated on current events. On their Green page, as if it were destiny, was the article
Monsanto's Corn Linked to Organ Failure in Rats. Turns out that three varieties of their genetically modified corn cause "hepatorenal toxicity" in rats, which means that most of the damage happens in the kidney and liver, the organs that our body relies on to detoxify our diet.

Just one more reason to buy organic and to stay away from processed foods in general. GMO corn is in practically every processed food on the market, even "organic" processed foods. Processed foods only have to be 95% organic, and it is usually the corn byproducts used in processed organics that don't make the cut.

It is the New Year...a good time to make new changes. Ask yourself, what is it worth to me? What things am I willing to spend more money on for better jeans? hair products? Why not apply the same value to food, something that actually has a meaningful impact on not only your health therefore your life, but the environment as well. What is more important? Even if you can't afford to go all out organic, start somewhere...pick an item or two and make the switch milk and eggs, or meat and salad mix, just do what you can.
Something is better than nothing.

After seeing Food Inc. my aunt now goes to the grocery store with a sense of righteousness. "I walk up to the cashier and slap down my organic foods casting my vote with my pocketbook." Right On Aunt Nan!

Way to put your money where your mouth is!


Candace Fasano said...

Love this Nan. Watched Food Inc. twice myself. Made Gary and kids watch it too. Also saw the HuffPo article - doing a painting about the whole mess. I'm with you, vote with our pocketbooks and grow our own. Also just read the DuPont is sueing Monsanto over their monopoly on these frankenseeds. Unfortunately, what will probably happen is they will negotiate some kind of profitable arrangement to just split the profits and take it to another unnatural level. People don't realize what is going on - thanks for what you do!

Anonymous said...

Monsanto..."Feeding the World" It's the same baloney as Walmart's, "Live Better." Bleh. Your post points out more reasons to buy fresh, local, whole foods & to avoid the middle aisles in the grocery. Thanks, Nan! Good luck coping without the caffeine & don't forget about your New Year's goals...put your feet up for a while each day, girly.
Love you,

Christina Catinella said...

thank you for writing about this nan! its unfortunate that there aren't more organic soy based products out there.

Christina Catinella said...

i finally watched food, inc. last night and thank you for recommending it. i was trying to think of ways i can do more with my money and thought to search for organic food coupons, as what come in the newspaper and mail are for the "junk foods" they talk about in food, inc. i came across this website . she has them organized into categories and you have to sign up for a newsletter to get most of them, but then they will email more of them to you in the newsletters. she also recommends that if there is a brand that you buy a lot and they don't offer coupons, then write to them and see if they will send you some. i think this is a great way to let the organic companies know that we buy their products and they need to be more affordable.

Nan said...

Thanks Tina for that awesome tip...I am definitely going to check it out. Chef actually calls Whole Foods "Whole Paycheck" I agree that writing companies is a great way to let them know that their market demographic is changing and they need to meet a new price point.