". . . little shall I grace my cause

In speaking for myself. Yet, by your gracious patience,

I will a round unvarnish'd tale deliver . . ."

(William Shakespeare's Othello, I.iii.88-90)

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

What the World Eats

My husband sent me this link from Dr. Joseph Mercola's nutrition website. It is a fascinating photographic study of the dietary habits of families from different parts of the world. Each family is pictured surrounded by all the food they purchased and ate in a typical week, and the amount they paid for that food is given below the photo. As I studied the photos, several thoughts came to mind:

1) Compared to many of the families pictured, I guess we are not doing too bad with our eating! We are also spending way less per week on food than most. So while I have been wringing my hands in recent years over our rising family food budget, I guess I should relax and listen to my husband, whose motto is that spending money on wholesome, healthy food is one of the best investments we can make.

2) I found it intriguing to study not only the food in the photos but also the families themselves and their demeanors and surroundings. Thus, I couldn't help noticing that in spite of their comfortable living space and a formidable array of food, several of the more modernized, "Western" families just don't look very happy. On the other hand, the family that struck me as having the most joyful appearance was the Ayme family of Tingo, Equador. Their home is literally constructed of mud and straw, and their food expenditure for one week was $31.55. As best I can tell from the photo, they subsist on plantains and other fruits, leafy vegetables, potatoes, rice, and raw milk. They look robustly healthy and happy, but not overweight. There are seven children in the photo. Hmmm, I think a lot of Americans could learn about true happiness by looking at this family.


Kim said...

That is a great link!

I never realized how abnormal we are with our eating habits. This really drove home how much processed food is out there. I admit I was shocked at the family from NC, that is one large food bill and so much junk.

Jane said...

Some weeks are better than others around here, but even on a bad week our food looks better than the western families on the web site.
One thing that always blows me away is the amount of soft drinks people consume.

We do spend a lot more on groceries than I would like, but with two very active teen boys, a growing 11 yo, and a young adult daughter who is blessed with a great metabolism, we go through a lot of food!