Sunday, May 1, 2011

I See Dumb People

Bon Appétit recently published a piece entitled "We're Calling B.S. on the Paleolithic 'Lifestyle' Trend." The headline sounded juicy -- I love a good debate, and am open to new evidence or compelling arguments. So, Bon Appétit, fire away! What've you got?

Argument No. 1: "We will note that Fred Flintstone, patriarch of the modern stone age family, wasn't exactly trim."

Wait -- what? That's a joke? Aren't jokes supposed to be funny? Besides, the Flintstones ate like crap. Hit me with the real stuff.

Argument No. 2: "Forsaking all dairy and bread for nuts and berries to recreate a body that flourished when middle age meant 15 years old just doesn't make sense to us."

That hoary myth again? Read this. Or this. Or this. Or this. Or this. What else have you got?

Argument No. 3: "While we may not have biologically evolved all that much, our intellectual development has brought us a greater scientific understanding of the nutrients our bodies need to be healthy."

Oh, good. Although I kind of wish you'd actually clued us in on the "greater scientific understanding" that's led to significantly better health outcomes across Western civilization, perhaps I'm quibbling. I'm SO glad that Type II diabetes, autoimmune disorders and metabolic syndrome are a thing of the past, and that obesity rates have plummeted worldwide. Wait -- what? They haven't? We're fatter and sicker than ever? Hmm. That's weird -- especially with all that mysteriously unspecified "scientific understanding" and all.

Okay, Bon Appétit, I know you're saving the best for last. Sock it to me.

Argument No. 4: "10,000 years ago, food was pure nourishment, a necessity and nothing more. We now have advanced to a place where eating is more than just consumption: food is culture, history, art, and science, all on one plate. Pomegranates are Pom Wonderful!"

WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN? Are you saying that avoiding processed breakfast cereals, Pop-Tarts and Pizza Hut's Stuffed Crust Pizza in favor of real, whole foods is an affront to art and history, and threatens our very cultural fabric? Because if so, I'm pretty sure you're the bullshit artist.

Also? What you said about Pom Wonderful MAKES NO SENSE. Did anyone even proofread this thing? How did a piece that says absolutely nothing -- other than "the Paleo Diet is clearly bullshit because, sounds kinda weird to me" -- get published by a prominent food periodical?

My wife then interjected with an even better question -- this one, posed to me:

"Why are you paying attention to what Bon Appétit says?" M asked. "That magazine's even dumber than Cooking Light."