James Gandolfini died last week of a heart attack. He was only 51.
I didn’t know the guy, but his death rattled me. As did the sudden death of comedian Patrice Neal, who died of a stroke at only 41; the death of Rick Byargeon, 56, a pastor and former professor at New Orleans Seminary who died of melanoma; and the death of David Bartram, a professor and colleague at East Georgia College, who was 63 and had just recently been given a clean bill of health after a stress test. He went home for Christmas and died the day after, quite suddenly, of a heart attack.
I don’t know all the factors, lifestyle choices and circumstances surrounding each of these deaths and I’m certainly not intending to speculate or cast aspersions on them at all. However, all of these deaths, and all deaths like them, constantly remind me why I live the way I do and how much further I have to go. And I hope they will serve as an Ebenezer to one of you four faithful readers, reminding you that your days aren’t promised on this earth. Why wouldn’t you do everything in your power to prolong them?
In my last post, I talked about obesity and I shared a list of foods banned in other countries but allowed here in the United States.
When I think about these chemicals, most of which are PROVEN to cause neurological disease and cancer (among other harmful effects), it infuriates me. It infuriates me even more when I realize that most of these foods (especially foods with harmful colors and dyes) are marketed to our CHILDREN!
It infuriates me to think about how there is increasingly less FOOD in our food and there is little or nothing being done about it, save for this awesome guy in England.
Our butchered cows are fed horrible diets, sometimes causing acidosis, which farmers fight with drugs, which end up in our already fat-ridden meat. Chickens are given huge amounts of hormones to make their breasts larger (which means more profit per chicken) and injected with an array of antibiotics and other meds to battle their frighteningly unsanitary living conditions. Milk cows are given growth hormones to make them produce more milk and they’re pumped beyond their limits, requiring their udders to be treated with antibiotics and ointments, all of which ends up in our milk.
Frozen and processed foods are treated with preservatives and chemicals, many of which come from petroleum-based compounds (that’s from CRUDE OIL, people) that were never meant to be ingested. Sodium contents are higher, fat contents are MUCH higher and the foods, while not any more physically dense and filling, are more calorically dense than ever. That means we can eat less of this tripe and it’s doing MORE damage to us than ever before!
I realize this sounds like the rant of an angry man. The rants of a hypocrite, even, as I was one addicted to the foods I attempt to vilify. I’m certainly not perfect, and I’m certainly not immune to the inherent joy one feels when eating something decadent.
I guess I’m just tired of the deaths and the disease. I know they aren’t ALL coming from our foods, but so many of them are, and many of them are still being examined to find their source. I hate that Autism has jumped exponentially. I hate that heart disease will kill more Americans than ever before. Diabetes is absolutely ravaging men, women and now our children, too. I hate it all.
Gandolfini played a mob boss on the show, “The Sopranos.” They were fond of using the term, “fuggedaboutit.” It’s meaning varies. It can mean anything from the literal, “forget about it,” to the more obscure, “it’s not worth mentioning because its greatness is so apparent.”
I’m not telling you how to eat, my four faithful readers.
I’m just asking that you tenaciously do your own research, persistently read the labels, and never…EVER…”fuggedaboutit.”