In my day-to-day gathering of cool info to pass along to my blans (blog fans), I have collected these great niblets of knowledge for you.
My pal Liz at the agency (remember? the cool foodie/ art buyer/ fabulous lady?) passed along this AMAZING article to me from the New York Times Magazine called The Age of Nutritionism. Basically, it's about how we as a society have gone from eating food (comestibles that your great-great-grandmother would have eaten - like, say, an apple) to consuming "food" - highly-processed, cardboard-box-dwelling fare with the shelf life of a piece of petrified wood and the nutrition of, well, a cardboard box. Be prepared, though, for a few hard-hitting wake-up calls that are impossible not to mull over. For me, it was the fact that Americans spent 24% of their income on food in 1940 (this is a good thing), whereas now we spend just 10% on food. So it turns out that my constant bitching about Whole Foods (AKA Whole Paycheck) has been for naught - I really should be buying high-quality, honest-to-God, no-quotation-marks-around-it FOOD.
Read the article in its entirety here.
And, in other pro-world news, I came across this great little $10 book called The Better World Shopper. It breaks down puchaseables into categories (such as "Personal Care Products"), and then lists the best and worst companies from whom to purchase these products. There's even a website!
Check out these great Top Tens from the site:
My best friend's husband (Brent Lopp, of the Athens Lopps, married to one Amy Stone Lopp) worked at Odell brewery in Ft. Collins, which (like New Belgium) is wind-powered, sells sustainable products, and encourages bike riding (thanks for the correction, Ames - sorry for the misprint). Their beer is delicious! When in Ft. Collins, testing the microbrews while gazing at the Rockies should be at the top of your list of things to do.
I also LOVE Endangered Species Chocolate - not only do I get to eat chocolate while helping to save endangered animals, the chocolate itself is INCREDIBLE. Try the panther or the tiger varieties.
Lately, I've been hearing some seemingly negative buzz about gluten. Not knowing the first thing about gluten, I did some quick research. What I found out is that gluten itself is no villain - it makes bagels chewy, and that's good enough for me - but some people are allergic to it. I think I might have been confusing it with glucose, a type of sugar (which in our low-carb world is pretty much public enemy number one, despite the fact that it is crucial to photosynthesis, ergo, crucial to all plant life on the planet).
Which reminds me - I read a great Newsweek article about the rise of allergies in Western culture. I had no idea that in elementary schools these days, it's de rigeur to have "peanut free zones" in the lunch room, and dairy-free, wheat-free birthday cakes! Read it in its entirety here.
Thanks for reading! Have a great holiday!