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Maybe It’s Not the Food Itself, It’s The Way We Eat

This morning I saw not just one, but two articles on the food desert issue. Both articles talked about previously hashed arguments on food deserts, as well as new research that suggested that the accepted solution of more supermarkets in poor areas does not work as planned.

I think it’s more than the presence of food, but how we eat. This goes for people who eat everything in sight, as well as people who nearly starve themselves or only eat a certain type of food.

I’m not saying that we shouldn’t have healthy diets. In fact, that’s exactly what I am saying. But we should stop policing only those who are poor who often eat what’s in front of them, just like we do.

Plus, who really wants to admit they are poor. Eating for some people may be a form of upward mobility. It may be because stuff just tastes better. It may be emotional. It may be cultural. Not all these reasons have to do with the fact that there is or isn’t a Whole Foods around the corner.

Side note of the day: I may be getting fat off of Spinach Artichoke Hummus and Sweet Potato Biscuits, but that’s just me

Still,just as I did above, I can admit that sometimes I eat or drink too much. If that stat that was sited in both articles about poor people eating better than rich in the 1950’s, maybe it’s more than the location and even the cheapness of food. As a whole, despite all our healthy living efforts, we still prioritize and celebrate eating what we want, as much as we want, whenever we want.

If people are wanting to be rich and they see how “rich people” act and that is stuffing their faces, then they will stuff their faces. They will go to Whole Foods with EBT cards. As they have already done, they will lobby and get farmers markets in their communities.

Instead of saying that healthy eating is good, maybe tell everyone that it’s bad. Or, use whole grain cookies or something else that’s delicious and healthy as bait. Maybe we could go back to tilling fields or walking blocks or between cul-de-sacs, depending on which tradition you grew up in.

Ultimately, I think the time of blaming only poor people for their food choices is over. Unless we are doing it all right all the time, let’s just make sure we all go to the doctor, get in our 8 glasses of water and mix in some fruit today.

The photo above is of an establishment that has finally decided to make itself known in Greensboro. I repeat again, this place can also make you fat(and broke)  if you aren’t careful. Keep up with me on Facebook, Twitter and now Instagram, where the lovely image above originated.

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