I cannot sleep. I am reading a N.Y. Times story about babies dying of malnutrition in oil-rich Venezuela.
The stories frustrate me because the parents/caregivers are feeding them crap. At these ages (up to 3 years old) children should be breastfed, fat & sassy. The extreme poverty in Venezuela has affected the health of some mothers rendering them incapable of producing sufcicient amounts of milk, I get that, but I see the families dependent upon government to provide processed garbage food when traditional (unprocessed) high starch diets based on beans, rice, potatoes (supplemented w/ garden grown greens) would keep them healthier… along with a re-education about the nutritional superiority of breast milk for infants.
When I read that hospitals blame a shortage of (inferior) baby formula, and troops must keep crowds from stealing (inferior) processed carbs from bakeries, I know there is a lack of knowledge. There may also be a lingering relationship to the 1970s popularity of baby formula highly (and falsely) promoted as “superior” infant nutrition by American food corporations.
I’ve always suspected that the reason a plant-based diet has recently garnered wider acceptance is because governments are beginning to realize that a meat based diet is not sustainable on a worldwide basis. As nations like India & China have acquired wealth (and more so due to the social impact of multimedia) everyone seems to want to bathe in the excess of gasoline vehicles & rich western diets. On a large scale such opulence will destroy the Earth, as it already IS destroying the health of Western society.
Ironically, it is a return to the simplicity of our ancient ancestors – a life dominated by unprocessed food, intermittent fasting & a good degree of manual labor – that will make us strong.
In “food deserts” in the US (low-income areas that are dominated by fast food, with rarely a fresh green to be found) we are immersed in a sub-society of its own sort of opulence… the foodborne disease of Western excess. In poverty our people are dying as young adults from overnutrition. It seems most modern ethnic food has deteriorated and is now dominated by processed foods (animal fat, oil, flour, salt & sugar). It is reflected in our waistlines and in our ailing health on a cultural scale. Even meat can be viewed as (inferior) processed food because the animals eat the plant-based nutrients that we need, and we eat them. But it is not our genes, it is not our heritage, it is not our history! We once knew how to thrive.
Here’s an interesting read on the subject:
Okay… I’m going to crawl back under the covers and get some sleep. I’ll work on solving the world’s problems tomorrow. 😢