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Food is something that most people know of, when they think of a culture. Italian food for instance, is famous and probably everyone one would know that pasta, pizzy and pesto is from Italy. For a lot of people the food from a foreign country is the only thing they know about. Take Greek for example, who knows exactly where it is or anything about the country? But many people know that Gyros is from Greece.
So you could say that food is a big part of culture. And like everything else, food changed over the last couple of decades. Especially here in America we have two big developments. Back in the 50′s when women stayed home to take care of household and children, the family would get home cooked meals only. Going to a restaurant was something special, nothing you would normally do, just because you don’t want to cook. That was unimaginable because the woman’s job was to cook (amongst other things) and if she didn’t want to, that was her problem, it was her responsibility to feed her husband (and later kids).
Nowadays there are not such strong roles in most families. The woman works too and whoever has the time cooks. And if nobody has time you can go to a restaurant, order take-out or just have the food come straight to your door. In other words people became lazy.
More precise: Women got lazy. I’m not one to say that we should go back to the 50′s when it comes to the point where women have to obey their husbands, but maybe when it comes to food, we should pull ourselves together some more; Just because self-made meals are so much healthier for a family (or just yourself).
When I go to the store I buy all the ingredients and put them together. And of course I do not insert any type of preservatives or artificial flavoring. When I cook I know what I put in there I would not put in anything that is bad for me. Of course when I want to make a good steak I use quite a bit of butter but that’s okay.
Fat is probably not the slowest way to a heart attack but it is definitely natural and won’t harm you really. If you go to any Fast Food Restaurant, you wouldn’t believe what they put in the food, to make it look better, taste better and extend the expiration date. Of course most people still want to eat something that tastes good, they don’t care anymore how the taste was made.
If you go to McDonald’s, you will not order extra pickles on your burger if you don’t like it. No, you order what you think tastes the best. But do most people really care that the burger, the fries and the drinks they order are filled with calories, carbohydrates, fats and sugars?
Let’s take a Big Mac for example; it has 540 calories, 30.1g of fat, 75mg cholesterol and nine grams of sugar. Add a large portion of french fries (500 calories), a medium soda (210 calories) and maybe a dessert e.g. a 12 fl oz cup McFlurry with Oreo Cookies (510 calories), you have all nutrition, calories, fats and sugars you need for one day packed into one McDonald’s meal. That adds up to 1760 calories. According to http://www.nutrition.mcdonalds.com.
The research conducted by http://www.livestrtong.com, young adults, ages 19 to 30 years; require more calories to be healthy later in life. Males, approximately 70 inches tall and 154 lbs., need almost 3,100 calories daily. Females of an average height and weight (64 inches tall and 126 lbs.) still need as much energy as when they were adolescents – just over 2,400 calories daily.
So if you’re a male between 19 and 30 years old you can have only 1340 calories more during the day if you want to stay healthy. Women have to be even more careful, we can only have 640 more calories per day if we do not want to gain weight, and do women really want to gain weight? Eating at McDonald’s once a day is enough to constantly gain weight if you do not stop eating after one and a half meals, even if you don’t have desert.
But the problem with Fast Food is that after only a few hours you get hungry again. If you make mashed potatoes with Steak and peas at home you will experience that this kind of food will keep you full for a longer period of time. It might have more calories in the first place but it also has better nutrition, and most important, will make sure you won’t need as much food during the rest of the day.
Another thing that is negative concerning the food-culture is that not only what we eat has changed; also the way you eat has changed. Back in the old days we would sit together as a family in the evening and have supper together and talk about everything that happened during the day. Nowadays most people have dinner in front of the television, if together at all.
Maybe if we all would try to make sure that we cook at home more often and then eat with our loved ones at least once a day our everyday life can improve in so many ways. We just have to make the time for it.