Flashback Friday: Cooking to Live Longer

Flashback Friday: Cooking to Live Longer
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Does cooking meals at home lead to improved health outcomes? And how do TV dinners compare nutritionally to TV-chef recipes?

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Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

Modern Americans are described as “eat[ing] breakfast in their cars, lunch at their desks and chicken from a bucket.” Within the last few decades, Americans are eating out more and more, and cooking fewer meals at home. And, “[f]ood prepared at home” tends to be healthier—”less…saturated fat, cholesterol, and sodium,…more fiber.”

And so, the “benefits to preparing healthful food at home [may include] chronic disease prevention.” But, even during the recession, folks were found “resistant to dietary change,” and kept going out to eat, or bringing it home. “Almost half of all fast-food…eaten by children [is eaten] at home.” So, just because they’re technically eating at home doesn’t mean they’re eating healthy.

“Even when [food is] prepared at home,” it still may not mean much, as most dinners were found to incorporate “processed commercial foods.” Microwaving a frozen pizza ain’t exactly home cooking. One of the problems is many people no longer know how to cook. For example, one study reported that “25% of the men…had absolutely no cooking skills” whatsoever.

“It is encouraging to see the new wave of interest in cooking, in numerous [TV] shows.” But, what are they actually cooking? A study in the UK compared the nutritional “content of…meals created by television chefs with ready meals,” like TV dinners, “to compare both with nutrition…guidelines [set forth] by the World Health Organization.” They looked at a hundred of each, and not a single one complied with the nutrition standards. And, the TV chef recipes were even “less healthy” than the TV dinners.

Many people just don’t know how to make healthy food taste good. This is not a new problem. As an editorial in the Journal of the American Medical Association bemoaned back in 1913: In the United States, “vegetables are frequently boiled in a way which deprives them of their characteristic odor and [their] toothsomeness. ‘Villainous and idiotic’ are the only adjectives that can describe our methods of cooking vegetables” in the United States.

Is there any research showing that cooking meals at home actually improves health outcomes? Do people who cook live longer? We didn’t know, until now. Researchers in Taiwan found that those “who cook their own food are healthier, and [do, indeed, appear to] live longer.

“In a 10-year study, [they found that] those who cooked most frequently “had only 59% of the mortality risk.” And, this took into account the exercise people got grocery shopping, and “physical function and chewing ability.” So, why did they live longer? Well, those that cooked ate more nutritious foods—”as evidenced [by] their higher consumption of vegetables.”

The effect on mortality was much more evident in women than in men, though. Turns out that “men were, with doubtful justification, more positive about the [nutritive] value…of convenience foods.” So, their idea of cooking was like microwaving a Pop-Tart®, whereas “women who cook [actually make] better food choices.”

As one author noted, last century, “we began the long process of turning over to the food industry many of the decisions about what we eat…Today, our staggering rates of obesity and diabetes are testimony to the faith we put in corporations to feed us well. But the food industry is a business, not a parent; it doesn’t care what we eat as long as we’re willing to pay for it. Home cooking these days has far more than sentimental value; it’s a survival skill.”

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Images thanks to dno1967b via flickr

Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

Modern Americans are described as “eat[ing] breakfast in their cars, lunch at their desks and chicken from a bucket.” Within the last few decades, Americans are eating out more and more, and cooking fewer meals at home. And, “[f]ood prepared at home” tends to be healthier—”less…saturated fat, cholesterol, and sodium,…more fiber.”

And so, the “benefits to preparing healthful food at home [may include] chronic disease prevention.” But, even during the recession, folks were found “resistant to dietary change,” and kept going out to eat, or bringing it home. “Almost half of all fast-food…eaten by children [is eaten] at home.” So, just because they’re technically eating at home doesn’t mean they’re eating healthy.

“Even when [food is] prepared at home,” it still may not mean much, as most dinners were found to incorporate “processed commercial foods.” Microwaving a frozen pizza ain’t exactly home cooking. One of the problems is many people no longer know how to cook. For example, one study reported that “25% of the men…had absolutely no cooking skills” whatsoever.

“It is encouraging to see the new wave of interest in cooking, in numerous [TV] shows.” But, what are they actually cooking? A study in the UK compared the nutritional “content of…meals created by television chefs with ready meals,” like TV dinners, “to compare both with nutrition…guidelines [set forth] by the World Health Organization.” They looked at a hundred of each, and not a single one complied with the nutrition standards. And, the TV chef recipes were even “less healthy” than the TV dinners.

Many people just don’t know how to make healthy food taste good. This is not a new problem. As an editorial in the Journal of the American Medical Association bemoaned back in 1913: In the United States, “vegetables are frequently boiled in a way which deprives them of their characteristic odor and [their] toothsomeness. ‘Villainous and idiotic’ are the only adjectives that can describe our methods of cooking vegetables” in the United States.

Is there any research showing that cooking meals at home actually improves health outcomes? Do people who cook live longer? We didn’t know, until now. Researchers in Taiwan found that those “who cook their own food are healthier, and [do, indeed, appear to] live longer.

“In a 10-year study, [they found that] those who cooked most frequently “had only 59% of the mortality risk.” And, this took into account the exercise people got grocery shopping, and “physical function and chewing ability.” So, why did they live longer? Well, those that cooked ate more nutritious foods—”as evidenced [by] their higher consumption of vegetables.”

The effect on mortality was much more evident in women than in men, though. Turns out that “men were, with doubtful justification, more positive about the [nutritive] value…of convenience foods.” So, their idea of cooking was like microwaving a Pop-Tart®, whereas “women who cook [actually make] better food choices.”

As one author noted, last century, “we began the long process of turning over to the food industry many of the decisions about what we eat…Today, our staggering rates of obesity and diabetes are testimony to the faith we put in corporations to feed us well. But the food industry is a business, not a parent; it doesn’t care what we eat as long as we’re willing to pay for it. Home cooking these days has far more than sentimental value; it’s a survival skill.”

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Images thanks to dno1967b via flickr

Doctor's Note

Check out your local public library for cookbooks—I’ve been amazed at the selection in all the cities where I’ve lived. Or, for those for which books are just so 20th century, the online Rouxbe Cooking School holds healthy cooking classes. Check them out: www.rouxbe.com/plant-based.

Of course, I now have the How Not to Die Cookbook out. Look for it at your library too!

More on fast food:

Some other unsavory bits about the food industry:

I think this is the only other mention of celebrity chefs I have:
Paula Deen: Diabetes Drug Spokesperson

Since the original video came out, I’ve made more videos on the food industry. Check out:

If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.

68 responses to “Flashback Friday: Cooking to Live Longer

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    1. Isn’t that Ketchup? Gotta get your veggies in. I grew up in spam and the original TV dinners. Surprised I made it this far.

    2. The ketchup threw you? What about the disgusting brown floating clumps in what looks like sewage water it’s on top of? Lol.

      1. I’ve no idea. At first I thought it was bread, but now I’m thinking it must be mystery meat with mucus on top of it.

  1. I agree. Just the smell of home cooking adds to quality of living and is therapeutic. Back in the day (decades ago) I lived on a farm and oftentimes just about everything we had on the dinner table we produced. Eating at my dad’s parents involved ducking under wood, log cabin ceiling beams to get a seat at the table. We dined on what the land produced and granny cooked. A prayer was said before the dinner and we were grateful for what we were about to partake. Culture of living.

    1. Depends on the farm. My grandfather was a farmer in Pa. I visited in the summers. What I recall eating is blackened ham as tough as shoe leather, mashed potatoes with no skin, lots of gravy, corn on the cob slathered in butter and salt, lots of eggs, homemade ice cream and cookies with lots of sugar and probably butter or lard, green peas. Sure there were fresh tomatoes and some lettuce or whatever but I rank those home cooked meals as among the least healthy meals I have ever eaten.

      1. What I recall eating is blackened ham as tough as shoe leather, mashed potatoes with no skin, lots of gravy, corn on the cob slathered in butter and salt, lots of eggs, homemade ice cream and cookies with lots of sugar and probably butter or lard, green peas. Sure there were fresh tomatoes and some lettuce or whatever…
        —————————————————————————————————-
        Sounds a lot like meals at my family’s table. Mom tried to be a good housewife and when some govt. ag dept. recommended meat be cooked thoroughly to kill some bacteria or another, my mother would cook our slaughtered milk pen calf meat until it was also blackened and tough as shoe leather. ‘-)

        But I look back at old pictures and at school annuals and hardly anyone was fat. Still, some people died too young (probably from smoking, mostly) but others who didn’t work themselves to death managed to live long lives and with their senses intact.

        Although we claim increased longevity, I think a lot of that is due to much lower rates of infant mortality and fewer occupational, accidental deaths.

        1. Lonie, >>But I look back at old pictures and at school annuals and hardly anyone was fat That’s for sure! Almost all of my relatives living in Pennsylvania Dutch farm country had physically very demanding jobs and none were fat. Tough as nails, more like it :-)

        2. >>> Although we claim increased longevity, I think a lot of that is due to much lower rates of infant mortality and fewer occupational, accidental deaths.
          Infant mortality improvements are certainly a key component but some longevity statistics factor out that variable, yet longevity on average has improved. However, improvements in sanitation, healthcare, etc. are not, as far as I know…. so your overall point is well taken.

          1. Lonie & Gengo,

            Yes, my elderly relatives were hard workers who were not fat.

            Though, back then, the men died young. One of the husbands used to joke about whether the women were killing their husbands. The women were living into their 90’s and the males were dying in their 50’s.

            Those women were such sweethearts that it became so obvious that the men were stubborn-never-gonna-get-old-coots. I can look back into history and see one of my relatives who was so stubborn that I know there could be a stubborn gene or two in the family line.

            1. De, >> a stubborn gene or two in the family line.
              That’s funny, and so true for my family too. When my one granfather, the farmer, fell off a truck in his early 40s shattering his hip he refused to go to the hospital. He paid for that by having to use a cane from then on.
              Still he worked that farm until the large corporate farms destroyed the small ones. Then he drove a bus.

              1. Gengo,

                That is exactly how all of the men in my family were.

                We could be related.

                I will admit that I have a little bit of that in me, too.

                My brothers both were back at work almost immediately after their surgeries.

                Both of my sisters-in-law tried to say, “Doctors are saying at least a month” and neither of them have a say in some things.

                My brother was standing up and walking 40 laps around the hospital floor the day after his surgery. His visitors were having standing conversations with him. He said, “I stand up 8 to 10 hours a day at work, I am not just going to lay here all day.”

              2. When my one granfather, the farmer, fell off a truck in his early 40s shattering his hip he refused to go to the hospital. He paid for that by having to use a cane from then on.
                Still he worked that farm …
                —————————————————-
                My maternal great grandfather was dragged severely by a runaway team and had to give up farming. He had about a dozen boys (seriously) and sold out to one of them and bought a small hotel. By taking it easier as a hotel owner, he lived a long life.

                But one of his sons, my maternal grandfather, died when pressuring up the gasoline container for the stove used for cooking in his cafe and having it blow up hitting him in the chest, killing him instantly. That’s what I meant by death from occupational hazards.

            2. Deb, maybe you or someone else knows this better, but I seem to remember reading somewhere that women are protected from some of the afflictions that were common to men, but once women went through menopause they lose that protection and from that point on their health deteriorates at about the same rate that men have endured.

              I also vaguely remember that it was attributed to a monthly loss of iron through the menstrual cycle that afforded that early life protection. ITBT, then not eating red meat should lower the amount of iron men get and could be how abstaining from meat may increase longevity.

              I remember when I first read that I asked around to see if anyone locally offered leech treatments. I even asked the lab techs at the VA to take more blood. They just laughed and said most people accused them of being vampires and therefore taking too much of their blood. ‘-)

              People scoff when they hear that Dr.s during colonial times would bleed a patient as a treatment. I believe that to be sound medicine as blood loss causes our bone marrow to send out stem cells into our blood stream to heal.

      2. I grew up on a farm and my mother cooked according to three rules: 1. If it’s green, boil it a long time. 2. If it’s not green, fry it for a long time. 3. Except okra and you can do either. Of course we had lots of good homemade lard to fry in/bake with and a handful always made good seasoning in thet boiling green stuff, was handy for biscuits and cornbread, and butter/eggs were pretty plentiful. The blessing of some kind of daily dried beans provided much-needed protein and a cup of cold beans was a great after-school snack…usually with an equally cold biscuit or piece of cornbread or sometimes there was a leftover egg biscuit. A plate of leftover grease from bacon or ham was a great accompaniment for slathering fresh corn on the cob; bacon grease with a little vinegar made our fresh lettuce so very tasty; and who can forget the big piece of fat ham or bacon in a pot of fresh green beans. I’m telling you, it was food to die for!

        1. When I was growing up we kept a big pot of lard for frying French Fries. We’d use the grease over and over again. OMG. :-( And somehow we survived.

          My dad had a great vegetable garden, so that’s what probably kept us from croaking. And my mother used to can stuff. However, in general, we ate a lot of meat and potatoes.

    2. That is so true, Dan. The love, companionship, and gratefulness is a huge factor in the benefits of what we eat. I say thank you to everything I eat for it’s life. I am grateful that I now know what is better for my health today. Thanks for your post.

      A proud and healthy monthly supporter of Nutritionfacts.org

      1. Hi Bobbi and Dan, thanks for the great point you brought in your comments regarding gratefulness. Being grateful for home cooking is a great message. Thanks for your support of Dr Greger work too.

  2. I’m seeing things from a different perspective. That is, I am more able to find foods on grocery store shelves and on the Internet that just weren’t available to me only a few short years ago.

    For example, I can find Peanut Butter (in glass jars no less) that consists of peanuts. Well, now-a-days it also has salt added, probably because Trader Joe’s experienced a recall due to salmonella, so now they add salt as a preservative.

    I can also find frozen organic blueberries and cherries and many other fruits and vegetables. Frozen is important to me as it makes things more affordable. I think Organic is the real revolution in food… and being accepted as worth the added expense just makes it more attractive a practice to the grower.

    I get it the video is about the hoi polloi and the foods most offered and chosen by them (us)… but for my food choices, I’ve never had it so good.

  3. It’s so hard to cook meals at home these days. Every time I try to copy a dish just like the one in the box, I can never find all the chemicals listed in the ingredients.

  4. Ok, does anyone else groove with that intro music? I just love it!

    I wish I could convince my husband to enjoy my home cooked meals more (he does like my cooking) but he is too tempted by the flavor profiles and the immediacy of the food industry. So I glow and go forward with my cooking. Today’s breakfast- a big wedge of steamed squash, walnuts and a kiwi fruit.

    A proud and healthy monthly supporter of Nutritionfacts.org :)

    1. I, not too long ago, added a half cup of caned pumpkin to my morning oats and beans. Excellent. This great food was under my radar for too long. Now I get the six basic food groups every day. Potatoes, corn, beans, whole grains, oats, winter squash.

      I think one of the major obstacles to people cooking is that they simply don’t have enough time.

      1. Hi Blair, thank you for your comment and excellent suggestion to add to your morning oat and beans. It is also true that time is a factor however, one can do put a portion of their time as a daily routine to home cooking and preparation which they would know bring them better sense of health. Of course for different age group the reward can be different. For example for a young person one can say the reward of home cooking would be saving money, more energy and being a good example for their young children if they have any children. For someone in a middle age group one could indicate that home cooking would reduce the incidence of chronic disease development. I wish you good health.

      2. Blair, that sounds good.

        I will have to try it.

        I am not good at eating my morning oats and I just bought some things to add in it, trying to get myself to actually do it.

        I bought all of the ingredients when Dr. Greger showed his morning oats and I still haven’t eaten oatmeal.

        I really am going to do it. It is so hard for me to function in the morning.

        1. Personally I just do not like oatmeal. And (lucky for me) I don’t particularly have a sweet tooth so loading sweet stuff on oatmeal doesn’t help me much. I DO however just love whole oat groats. Cook them just like rice (and they cook in half the time) and you can eat them instead of pasty, bland oatmeal. Oat groats are chewy and yummy and you can add veggies just like you would do if you were fixing a grain meal. Easy peasy.

  5. I have a recently widowed male friend who hasn’t a clue about cooking. His pride-and-joy is his kale smoothie. Otherwise it’s leftover white rice and veggies from his restaurant meal the night before. Still it’s better than the processed food he and his lost wife used to eat before she got cancer. She went on a WFPB diet mostly and managed to live ten years longer than her encologist thought possible. My friend understands the value of this diet, but it’s just too much work for him as he’s got a sixty year history of food being placed in front of him. I could draw some sociological conclusion about this, but just hope his diet is enough improved over his much earlier one so that he stays around a little longer.

    1. Hi Barbie thanks for your comment. I sympathized with your widowed male friend for the loss of his wife. I also think he is lucky to have friends like you who are caring and have noticed his needs for eating healthy meals on his own. I sense that you following Dr Greger would help your friend in an indirect way too. I wish you and your friend good health.

    2. Barbie,

      Maybe he could handle an Instapot and a few recipes?

      Or an Instapot with a double stacked steamer basket insert where he could cook vegetables in one basket and rice in the other?

      I don’t really like the Instapot, but most people do.

      I also don’t really like cooking. I did cook for my brother every day between his kidney cancer diagnosis and his surgery, but it was overwhelming and
      currently, I am buying every organic vegetable pre-prepped and I have been eating wraps or salads every single day.

      I know that it doesn’t sound like much variety, but I am eating just about every organic vegetable in the produce departments every single day so it fills the “wide variety of vegetables” concept without having to cook or prep almost at all. I enjoy the flavors and my dog begs for vegetables and that makes me happy.

      1. I know that it doesn’t sound like much variety, but I am eating just about every organic vegetable in the produce departments every single day so it fills the “wide variety of vegetables” concept without having to cook or prep almost at all. I enjoy the flavors and my dog begs for vegetables and that makes me happy.
        ————————————————————————
        Good to hear Dog is doing well. As for variety, I agree it is a good practice, but for me I generally speaking settle on a small number of foods to eat for a period of time. After a while, I may change what those foods are but still keep the numbers small.

        I do believe that variety is important to ensure one gets all the different healthy parts of meals, but I believe I am covered by the number of supplements I take. I learned long ago that one should take a break from supplementation to allow the body to reset. I had forgotten that practice and actually began thinking my high level of supplementation was dragging me down rather than lifting me up.

        I’ve recently gone to a start/stop regimen… still taking the same supplements but just not at the high levels as before, and am getting my energy back. Also changed back to an old assortment of foods… plus it’s Springtime and I spend more time outside.

        I suppose it’s all relevant but whatever, the combination feels good.

        1. Yes, my dog is doing so well.

          I change what I eat every few months, too.

          Sometimes I am all about chili and lentil loaf and beans and rice and I can alternate between those 3 or just eat chili every night. Chili seems to be my favorite of those.

          Then, I have the thought, I am not eating any vegetables other than what is in these recipes and I switch for another few months.

  6. Barbie, re socialogical conclusions: I downloaded the Dr Ornish papers on lifestyle and heart disease reversal, and others. The single statement that stuck with me from that trial was about the men (the male patients in the experimental group) would comply so long as food was totally prepared and placed in front of them. What a pathetic state of affairs that is. Parents who do not enrich their child’s (regardless of gender) nutrition/health education from school with practical lessons in shopping, label reading, meal design and preparation do their kids a real disservice.

    1. A man can go into Home Depot, buy a multiple burner BBQ cooker in a box, and bring it home. At home he takes all the parts, widgets, and canutin valves out of the box and follows a 27 page instruction book to assemble the BBQ with hand tools. However, at dinner time his culinary gifts only enable him to throw bloody chunks of meat on the new BBQ and turn them with tongs. For a side dish his only option is to throw a packet of macaroni and cheese in the microwave. He is un-gifted in the kitchen and unable to follow simple recipe instructions. Ummm…

      I think it’s time to pop a mythical bubble here (I like doing that).

      Man’s inability to follow a recipe book and cook a stir fry meal is purely cultural, not a deficiency in male programming. We (guys) somehow grow up thinking that cooking is too un-masculine or inimical to ego, and figure that if we don’t marry a cuisine goddess, we will surely starve to death. This is nonsense. I have cooked for myself since college days, so learned by necessity.

      When my barber once chided me, “Do you wear an apron when you cook?” I told him, “If I don’t cook, I don’t eat.” That got me an ovation from a woman barber in the shop. =]

      1. Thank you, dr cobalt!!

        I was thinking today about two women friends, neither of whom cooks; they’ve no interest, and so their husband or boyfriend does. Also, one of my new sons-in-law (two daughters married in the last 10 months!) does most of the cooking.

        Years ago, I knew several male scientists from other countries while working in Germany; they all knew how to cook. Some even invited me to share their native cuisine with them, prepared by them.

        Of course men can cook. They simply don’t want to. I do cook; I’ve been vegetarian for 48 years, so I’ve cooked at home all those years due to necessity. My husband, a widower when I met him 11 years ago, is not much of a cook — but he happily and appreciatively eats my home cooked meals — and he was not a vegetarian when I met him, but he switched right over, even when we ate out. BUT he does ALL the dishes!!! Boy, that sure does work for me! He cleans the kitchen afterward, too.

      2. Thank you Dr Cobalt! Great post.. some of the best cooks I know are men! Young guys are usually keen, especially if they learn while cooking /baking personal favorites. Bar b ques are a lot of fun when the whole family gets into it. Lots of terrific vegan recipes out there for grilled vegies, bean burgers, vegie kabobs etc.

      3. Man’s inability to follow a recipe book and cook a stir fry meal is purely cultural, not a deficiency in male programming.
        ————————————————————————————————————————————————————
        D. C, I have to disagree, in my case at least. I don’t remember ever following a recipe in my life. However, I do occasionally cook. And I guess it’s the rebel in me that allows me the freedom to innovate when I cook.

        Even when I open a can of Chicken Noodle soup, by the time I am through with it, it is unrecognizable as Chicken Noodle soup. Reason is, it has from 5 to 10 different herbs and spices added, powdered things like hemp protein, brewer’s yeast, etc., and if I think about it, some V-8 juice as well.

        If ever I’ve made the same thing twice, it would likely qualify as one of those 100 year co-incidence events. Oh, and I try to finish what I make no matter how bad it tastes. ‘-)

        1. Good! So you have an Innovation gene instead of an instruction following gene. My guess is the first thing you’d do after you brought your new BBQ home would be to… throw away the instruction book!

          Yes? =]

          I want to try some of your soup sometime, sans chicken, of course.

          1. My guess is the first thing you’d do after you brought your new BBQ home would be to… throw away the instruction book!

            Yes? =]
            ————————————————————————————————-
            Actually, I live the dichotomy of never opening an instruction book, but on the other hand, never throwing one away. ‘-) And of course, me having a BBQ instruction booklet is a non sequitur since I would not even accept one of those BBQ monstrosities even as a gift.

            If madam is averse to the chicken, may I suggest instead some of my special gelatin? It is made from a mix that was originally meant for mixing with alcoholic drinks but works very well as… jello. Mine is special as it has a quarter tsp of Moringa Oleifera powder, a tsp or so of Hemp protein, a half tsp of almond powder mixed with a cup and a half boiling water. And after mixing, about a cup of frozen wild blueberries and a half cup of frozen sweet cherries. Before refrigeration, I also add a dash of Angostura Bitters, about a TBsp of vanilla, an ounce or two of beet root juice and Tart Cherry Juice.

            Would Madam care to try this instead of the soup du jour?

            Yes then. and an aperitif? … very good.

            (Apologies for the above… I’ve been binge watching old Secret Agent/Danger Man episodes on You Tube and Patrick McGoohan has taken over my language center.)

          2. I’d suggest throwing away the noodles as well. They are usually made with cheap hydrogenated oil, salt and eggs.

            1. Tom, sure you’re not thinking of Ramen noodles? I think there is legislation before the WHO to put a skull and crossbones on the package.

          3. Dr Cobalt, apologies… I referred to you as female in a response below. As Dr. J is female, I think I just got my Docs mixed up.

      4. Dr. Cobalt,

        I was wondering where you were. Have I been in the wrong section and missing your posts?

        I love this one.

        My father used to tell us, “There is a secret to life and it is not to learn anything.” He would explain that if you really blow things, people will stop asking you to do them. He would give an example of my mother asking him to cook a hamburger while she was very pregnant with my brother and he pretty much gave a rare hamburger. Very thick. Very rare. Might have been cold in the middle. He used to say it all the time and my mother would roll her eyes that she married a man who wanted her children to not know how to do anything at all and was proud of it. He was a charmer and got away with it all of his life, until his newest wife had a stroke and now he cooks and cleans for them. (Yes, he turned the laundry pink and he was quite a character.)

        I have reason to believe that he was missing oxytocin. I say that because I was reading about The Longevity Study which said that 75% of longevity is related to the single trait of conscientiousness and that conscientiousness seems to be related to having an optimal oxytocin receptor gene and being nurtured from birth to early childhood. My father never bonded with his children. Not at all. And my friends who struggle in life all had fathers who didn’t bond with them. The thing is that my father is going to outlive all of us and it isn’t because he is conscientious. It is because he was always able to charm conscientious people like my mother and brother and my carpenter and all kinds of conscientious people. He is getting longevity by proxy, but I can say that he has finally started cooking and it was this year and he is an old guy. It isn’t probably healthy food, but still, I am pretty fascinated to see him looking up how to cook.

        1. I am laughing because my father also used to get stern with me when I got a 98 on a test and he would say, “What happened to the last 2 points?” and he would play these mind games telling me that he would bet me $5 that I didn’t know what my name was. It occurs to me now that I didn’t learn life skills because I couldn’t follow the logic of anything.

    2. Barb,

      I may agree, but what I will ask is if there are things you as a woman don’t try to do yourself that your spouse or father or sibling would do?

      Take apart a computer or fix a car or anything?

      I ask because my brothers both have every single handyman skill possible and I didn’t learn any of it and that is because I wasn’t interested.

      I watch them and my brother can do plumbing, electricity, carpentry, welding, auto repair, machining, drafting, engineering, so he just needs a way to make cooking more scientific and he responded to people like Alton Brown because of that and he can cook now.

      My other brother doesn’t cook, except grilling and Thanksgiving (holidays alternate and his wife does Christmas eve and doesn’t want to do Thanksgiving, too, but he volunteered because he wants leftovers, so it may be that they need a payoff)

    3. Barb,

      Some of my theories.

      1) We don’t teach cooking properly to males.

      Alton Brown speaks food science and my brother ends up watching cooking shows.

      Don’t know about today, but we had to choose between shop and home ec in school and 90% of the women chose home ec and almost all of the males took shop.

      I say that because that is my point. My brother was outside the other day changing his wheel bearings and he knows how to change his brakes and wheel bearings from shop class. They took cars apart and put them back together at least one semester.

      Women were learning cooking and don’t realize that the men might not have learned and people who did learn and who find cooking easy don’t understand that the males might not cook for the same reason a woman who didn’t take shop might not weld something.

      I am a woman and I am not saying something sexist. Males can and do cook. Look at how many chefs are males. Women can and do fix cars. But people need to learn things and often people who are looking down on someone who can’t do a skill doesn’t even remember that they had someone who taught them, whether a parent or grandparent or home ec teacher and it is often more than one.

      2) We might not understand male motivations.

      Dr. Ornish talked about how males won’t eat better out of a fear of dying.

      My female friends often do these eating switches out of wanting to lose weight to be attractive to males. 3/4th of males are overweight in America and they don’t care about it most of the time. Not for the same reasons. Sexuality. Sports. Science. To eat better tasting food. Those all ring true to me. If my brother was going to do “health” it would be increasing his telomeres or some concept, which wouldn’t motivate me. I liked watching the videos on it, but it isn’t why I would do this way of eating. Not having to go to the doctor and not spending money on health would be BOTH of my brothers AND my motivations, but neither of them has a doctor who believes diet affects health all that much.

      3) Instapots aren’t as fascinating as grills. Just saying. Both of my brothers love cooking on grills. My coworker and my friend’s husband both get up at 4 in the morning to see the garbage truck pick up garbage because they find it interesting and my uncle would listen all day to police scanners and airplane scanners and would go out and watch the planes fly over. The swack box sound never appealed to me. He would also watch the Weather Channel for hours and I eventually liked that, but it took a long time to like This Old House and watching weather radar and they always watched CSPAN and I got used to that and I still hate politics, but CSPAN was useful to understand why I hate it.

      1. I was watching a TEDTalk on the device which can read your brain waves and once it is trained how your brain perceives things, you can start running your smart home with your mind.

        You can open the drapes and change the temperature or shut off a light or lock a door just by thinking.

        When there is an Instapot attached to one of those, my brothers will take up cooking.

        1. I was watching a TEDTalk on the device which can read your brain waves and once it is trained how your brain perceives things, you can start running your smart home with your mind.

          You can open the drapes and change the temperature or shut off a light or lock a door just by thinking.
          —————————————————————————————–
          If I ever become a paraplegic, I want this!

          Meantime, I’ll do these things manually. ‘-)

          1. I looked at the price because I want one just to experiment.

            I want to see if I can visualize “disappear” well enough to have the cube in their cognitive training actually disappear.

            It feels like it would be a good way of strengthening the brain.

            I could see practical uses for it.

            You could probably program it to call 911 if you fell or had a stroke or a heart attack.

            I feel like it would improve the brain, except for the price. It was actually cheaper than I thought, but I am waiting for it to drop down below $1000.

            There will be plenty of things coming out based on that technology.

            Waiting for the cell phone where I can just think “Hey Siri” and have Siri read my texts while I am driving.

            1. I already know that this technology is already changing lives of people who do not have mobility and of stroke patients, but I already see such a large flashing caution sign.

              People could fall asleep with it on and end up with their smart house being out of control or someone else can figure out how to use it to commit crimes of some sort. They already can use it to make drones fly. And I already saw a video where someone used a drone to steal a bicycle. Hard to prove who it is when the person is not even looking or doing or saying anything.

      2. Don’t know about today, but we had to choose between shop and home ec in school and 90% of the women chose home ec and almost all of the males took shop.
        —————————————————–
        A friend of one of my older brothers chose Home Ec…. because that’s where all the girls were. ‘-)

        1. You see, there was always one or two.

          I dropped out of home except in junior high school.

          I have problems with depth perception and couldn’t thread small needles and I couldn’t proceed with the semester until I could do it and I say all class trying to thread a needle and I ended up over with the guys making tiddlywinks and my brother took sewing and made a pair of sweatpants and he broke my tiddlywink with a pair of scissors before I got a grade on it and he didn’t do it to be mean and I laughed but ended up outside of both shop and home ex.

          1. My tiddlywink worked the day before it was supposed to be graded.

            I think I dropped out because drafting was next and I took an extra educational class because though I genuinely enjoyed soldering I really didn’t want to do drafting.

  7. Yet another reason to: consider drugs as a last resort, not the first; try lifestyle changes first, including plant based whole foods eating to improve health; and eat plant based foods to avoid chemical contamination in animal products (animals can concentrate chemicals from the environment. But then, so can plants.)

    “Shrimp From 5 U.K. Rivers Have One Thing in Common: Cocaine”
    “In 2016, researchers found a cocktail of drugs, including Prozac, in salmon in Puget Sound, off the coast of Seattle.”
    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/03/world/europe/uk-shrimp-cocaine.html?action=click&module=Latest&pgtype=Homepage

  8. People were talking about Niacin the other day and Niacin is another vitamin which people say gets rid of hallucinations and, no, I am not having them since the Silica water, B-12 and D3.

    But I have a friend whose son is in trouble, so I went back to the Niacin studies and thought this was an interesting enough woman talking about her schizophrenia.

    She says that she has been healed with Niacin and never had another hallucination again.

    That isn’t exactly what this video is about. It gets there maybe by the end, but it is a life story with a musical revue.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1720&v=WP7ZumfBlUk

    1. Psychiatrists do not look for medical or nutritional reasons for things like hallucinations.

      They don’t look for brain damage or blood sugar issues or lack of Vitamin D or B-12 or Magnesium or Niacin.

      They don’t look for elevated Homocysteine or aluminum in the brain.

      It should be against the law to just give medicines without doing a basic check-list.

      It is the same for Autism and Schizophrenia. No tests at all. Just medicate based on symptoms.

      I want that to become a Supreme Court issue someday.

  9. Which sweet potatoes have the carotenoids? Beauregard (the orange ones), Hawaiian Sunshine (white skin, purple flesh), kumara (small version of purple skin, white flesh), northern star (large version of purple skin, white flesh)? How do they differ in amount? Also, what’s the name of the sweet potato with the purple skin and purple flesh?

  10. TV cooking shows are all about getting people addicted to flavors then calling themselves ‘foodies’ while their health declines. Even shows that claim to be healthier I know for a fact do not have a nutritionist on staff to even proofread the wildly inaccurate nutritional guesstimates they put on recipes their websites promote. Pointing out obvious errors falls on deaf ears. They do not care about nutrition and will only make token efforts. So called ‘healthy’ cookbooks from most still do not even bother to have nutritional information on the recipes.

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