"For each of us there is some mission in life if we but find it. All have some definite thing to do, something for which they have been created; and only the doing of this thing will justify their existence here on earth. If we come into the world and occupy space and time without giving back for this privilege, we have not justified ourselves, and our lives in the end are barren." ~ Hay

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Breakfast Out In America....

I’ve been eating breakfast out with a group of three women for seven years.  We only meet once every three months, mainly to catch up on what’s happening in our lives.  We take turns organizing and picking the restaurants we dine in.  Last month, one of my friends selected a local diner for breakfast.  I don’t enjoy eating meals out.  When you eat out, you lose complete control over what you are putting in your body.  You have no idea where they purchased or how they prepared their food.  I generally try and eat out as little as I possibly can.  When I do eat out, I try and pick the “least toxic items on the menu.”  Actually, it becomes a game trying to figure out which is the lesser evil to eat.  This particular time, I was struggling to find something I considered “edible.”  I opted to order a Greek Salad, with no dressing.  Well…I wish I had a camera to show the shocked looks my friends gave me.  One of them said, “How in the world can you eat a salad for breakfast!”  At that point she proceeded to order herself a diet coke.   I got defensive and told my friends in Europe, particularly Paris, breakfast items are typically served with a side order of greens.  “Really” my friend said, as she sipped her diet coke….
I’ve been to Greece, France and Italy.  The quality of the food doesn’t even compare to the crap we get here in America.  When I was in Greece, breakfast consisted of fresh fruit, a hard boiled pasture raised egg, and fresh raw whole milk yogurt with honey.  Actually, to make the yogurt, they skimmed the cream off the top of the milk, which made the yogurt extra rich and delicious.  Of course, freshly squeezed juice, coffee and tea accompanied the meal. 
I just loved the food in Paris, France.  Actually I loved everything about Paris!  Yes, the Parisians do walk around with baguettes of fresh bread and pastry, but they accompany these items with side orders of greens.  If I ordered eggs, which the yolk was always a beautiful dark orange, the side was a green salad.  The quality of the foods was unsurpassed and I was truly in awe.  I saw more of the same thing in Italy.   Again, greens were served often, as well as fresh fruit, good quality eggs and freshly squeezed juices.  In fact, I had the best orange juice I ever drank in Italy.  When you contemplate all the good food you left behind on your plane ride home, it’s hard not to get angry or annoyed. 
What are our choices when eating breakfast out here in America?  Hmmmm…  Maybe I should invent a new game/reality show called, “Which is the least toxic?
1.       Bread loaded with preservatives, high fructose corn syrup and partially hydrogenated oils.
2.       Eggs from factory farms which are loaded with a disproportionate amount of Omega 6’s.
3.       Sausage from animals that were fed genetically modified grains and were not out to see the light of day.
4.       Pancakes or waffles that are loaded with sugars…maybe even beet sugar which may also be genetically engineered.
5.       Cereal which is loaded with dangerous preservatives, food dyes and additives.
6.       Coffee which was grown with chemicals.
7.       Juice that has been pasteurized so all the living enzymes have been destroyed.
8.       Milk that came from cows that were injected with growth hormones and antibiotics. 
I guess I should add in diet coke……..
9.       Diet coke which is sweetened artificially with chemicals that make people fat because they are designed to make them crave more food. 

(These photos were taken recently at a hotel breakfast buffet at a hotel upstate New York.)

(By contrast, here are some photos taken at a hotel breakfast buffet in Israel.)

Fresh Fish

IT IS INSULTING HOW MUCH BETTER FOOD IS IN OTHER COUNTRIES THAN HERE!!  This is what happens when corporations take over the food supply with no regulation from the government.  Our well-being is not being cared for.  We can change this, however.  We can stop purchasing items that contain chemicals.  Please visit your local farms and/or farmers’ market to see what they have to offer.  Also, shop for additional items at local health food stores.  Read labels and ask questions.  EDUCATE YOURSELF!


Elinor said...

Guess we will have to go to Israel, France, Greece or Italy to eat out.

Arlen said...

I totally agree with every word you said Christine. You are a champion to spread the word. Here in Davis, in NorCal, I feel lucky as there are many good food choices. In part it is because of UC-Davis and its cutting edge food science/agriculture research programs but also because we have a culture here that strongly supports slow food and organic produce. Or maybe it's because we have so many (now old) hippies who settled here!

Jeff said...

I am not a huge salad eater, but the Israeli breakfast salads (I took the pictures) were terrific. Every breakfast I started off with a plate of fruit, followed by a plate of salad, and finished with a plate of smoked fish and cheese. I cannot imagine what Europeans and Israelis think of the U.S. when they get Fruit Loops, white bread, and stale muffins for breakfast.