Sunday, January 28, 2007

New York Times advice: "Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants."

I just sent this link to my family and friends with the joke that the news media, in this case the New York Times, feeling guilty for not doing their proper job during during the run up to the Iraq invasion has finally decided to tell the truth about food :-)

This article on food and nutrition strikes a cord with me for another reason: I have friends who worry about future shortages of potable water and energy. I believe that the solution to future resource problems is simple: let the free market determine the costs of the food that we eat. A case in point: why should Congress give the beef industry about $40 billion a year in free water subsidies?

Raising meat for food rather than plants does the following:
  • Uses 10 times the water
  • Uses 10 times the energy
  • Generates horrendous pollution of the air and underground water supplies
  • Raises health care costs caused by unhealthy eating habits
I think that it is fine to eat meat, but we only need tiny portions each day to augment a primarily vegetarian diet.

It all comes down to a personal choice not to be a glutton, be it gluttony for food, buying large fuel inefficient vehicles, or houses larger than your family needs for comfortable living that you will never be able to own (i.e., pay off the mortgage). I believe that water and energy resource problems are solvable with free market economics and raising our collective consciousness concerning the downside of gluttonous life styles.

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