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OK, it is obviously a problem, and the diabetes that results from being overweight and eating the wrong foods will cost us all a fortune if we don't do something.

Government's solution is to ban large soft drinks and tax the sweetness out of sugar. My solution is to teach people how to eat right, and that starts with teaching them how to cook.

Just recently I was teaching a young fellow and his friends how to cook eggs: quiche, omelets, and French toast. This was the first class in my Basic Kitchen Skills course. It was a private lesson being taught in their home. During the class, his dad came into the kitchen and popped a TV dinner into the microwave! The only thing his mom can make for dinner is reservations. Fortunately, their son has an interest in learning how to cook.

For one reason or another, schools have abandoned "home ec" in favor of more useful subjects like calculus ... and gym, required even for kids participating in a varsity sport. Celebrity chef and author Anthony Bourdain once said "I think we missed an opportunity here... instead of shutting down home ec we should have just expanded it and made everybody take it." Right on, Tony!

The other thing government does is tell us that certain foods are "bad" even though they really don't know. I can say they don't know because on many occasions they have recanted their position, like on eggs, once banned and now revered for their concentrated protein!

My mantra is the same most wise people live by: everything in moderation. Simple enough, but a radical departure from "if a little is good for you, a lot must be better." Another way to sum this up is "portion control." If you're cooking for your spouse and family, some of that responsibility falls on your shoulders when you plate dinner.

Another way to look at the situation: you only go through life once, and if you do it right, once is enough! Is food important? To me and many others, YES! Maybe it is my Italian heritage, but I really look forward to a nice dinner. Do I splurge once in a while? Absolutely. The key to surviving is "once in a while" and not every meal. We have beef once or twice a week, but we also have a couple of vegetarian dinners to balance things out, and seafood a couple of times a week... for some omega-3... what Mom used to call "brain food" and for good reason.

If you learn how to cook and eat right, chances are your kids will follow suit. Remember that apple... doesn't fall far from the tree! Our daughter, now a college kid, cooks almost all her own food. She's a vegetarian, been one since middle school, but she knows how to eat well and mix up the food groups. Ever seen the veggies in the college cafeteria? Now you know why she cooks... and fortunately she knows how. I really enjoy cooking with her when she's home, and we learn a lot from each other. Lately I've been teaching her how to cook eggs, and she's teaching me about kale! How cool is that?

Lastly, if you want to prevent obesity you need to get some useful exercise on a regular basis. Again, the key is regular, not once or twice a week. Doesn't have to be every day, but every other day is a good target. The other key is "useful" ... meaning complete. I swim a few times a week, but since that is not load-bearing it isn't enough, so I balance it by power-walking the days I don't swim. If you have trouble motivating yourself, exercise with someone else. Companionship might be the key to a healthy lifestyle for both of you!




feed-icon-16 WHAT'S COOKING:

My New Cookbook:
Check it out and get a free sample!

My Bread Book:
Check it out and get a free sample!

My Shopping Comparison:
Knock a third off your food bill!

My Coming Attractions:
Classes for Breadmaking or Cooking

My Tip of the Week:
Cooking with WInes & Spirits

Mix Your Own:
All-Purpose Seasoning

Like Salmon?
Try it grilled with hickory smoke

Spring classes have ended, so this site
is in "Summer Mode" for a few months.

This site is sponsored by
a new entertainment option in central CT.
Cooking parties are great for birthdays,
bachelorettes & showers, anniversaries,
or just for fun and make a great gift.
Have one for the "foodie" in your life!