Thursday, June 19, 2014

Tempting Food

With childhood obesity becoming an increasing concern, researchers have been trying to figure out the best parenting strategies for raising healthy eaters. 

The title of the article, "The Lure of Forbidden Food" by Tara Parker-Pope, amused me. After all, I would think that us Jews would know everything there is to know about forbidden food, no? 

You wouldn't catch many frum-from-births dreaming about BLTs, because in essence, you don't miss what you never had. I have heard more than one baal teshuva or convert wistfully reminisce on the lusciousness of shrimp and lobster. FFBs only blink in response. 

The same way one would never find a stash of the other white meat in a religious Jew's freezer, then find him telling his son, "We keep kosher," so to when it comes to "bad" foods: Don't have them in the house, then tell a kid "You can't eat that." 

Restriction, with temptation within reach, is too much for certain children (such as I was/is). My nephew executed suicidal gymnastic feats in order to grasp the bin of purple Laffy-Taffys perched atop the kitchen cabinets; he wasn't exactly appeased by my alternative, sliced apples.

Sure, there will always be that child who totes a bag of straight sugar and fat to school who can expose an unwitting wee veggie-consumer that there is a life beyond cucumbers, but parents have the greatest influence at this point. That's the fun when they are young and impressionable; they actually believe everything their caregivers tell them. Take advantage! 

As for the adults, the same premise applies. Don't buy that which cannot be resisted. It helps not stepping into the supermarket hungry. And sticking to the outer perimeter.   

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