Saturday, March 13, 2010

A blind spot

Every time I read an article on the obesity crisis, or public health, or food policy, or really anything involving the theme that Americans eat too much, I have a very strong gut reaction that the writer is crazy and has no idea what he's talking about. On reflection, I think it's probably more accurate that I am crazy and have no idea what I'm talking about.

I am, depending on perspective, either blessed or cursed with an impressively large metabolism; at various points in my life I've averaged about 5000 calories a day, with a stable weight, a slim build, and low cholesterol. My major complaint about American restaurants is that the portions are so small; with a few exceptions (the Cheesecake Factory serves portions that are precisely the right size), I leave restaurants still hungry unless I've done something silly like order two meals. (Or bring a date; my last girlfriend and I averaged two meals between the two of us).

Consequently, whenever I read a comment like Michael Pollan's "Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants," my immediate reaction is something like, "there's just no way to get a full meal out of plants. It's almost impossible to feel full after a meal with less than half a pound of meat in it." And for me, that's more or less true. But I should stop projecting onto the other 99% of the country.


Blogger Jennifer said...

But you're a dancer, are you not? You burn far more calories each day than the average American. When I was dancing, I could burn through an entire buffet without gaining an ounce -- and I only weigh 106.

That said, most of the "obesity epidemic!" stuff we hear these days is utter bullshit.

March 17, 2010 12:21 PM  

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