whether to eat

At the health food store where I work, the most popular supplements, bar none, are for weight loss. It’s on everyone’s mind, women and men alike. When Dr. Oz suggests some new pill-based approach, we get waves and waves of slightly embarrassed, hopeful and even desperate inquiries.

This morning, in his newsletter, Dr. Mercola offers an intermittent fasting idea that grabbed my attention, for yes, I, too, long for an easy weight loss solution. The interest in the paleo diet spawned this particular approach where you fast every other day. As I contemplated actually trying this, a growing unease finally registered.

Here I sit, in the midst of a world where so many people don’t have enough to eat that I hear radio commercials from the US government asking the already impoverished middle class (what’s left of it) to give charitable donations to help hungry American children. This is completely aside from, and additional to, the requests to help alleviate Third World hunger.

With climate changes already underway, our store has noticed drastic decreases in the availability and increases in price of spelt (poor crop last year), pine nuts (insect invasion), almonds, walnuts, and raisins (California drought and fires). So the thought occurred to me, fasting intermittently would be a good thing because I would save money because I wouldn’t be eating as much.

This has got to be crazy.

The point of civilization, I thought, was to learn to live together compassionately. Share the work and share the wealth. Water, air, earth – these are resources of the planet. And here I sit, knowing there is more than enough, very much more than enough, money in the world to easily arrange for a guaranteed minimum income for all. There’s more than enough food in the world to guarantee no one need starve.

It is 2014.

I’m part of a species that hypnotizes its haves into giving up its basic human right to eat, and its have-nots into deeper despair.

#diet #paleo #hunger #charity #income gap


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