Part homemaker, part novice researcher. That could be the perfect description of my life's work. I love staying current on the latest health research. I adore being in an academic setting, taking a class or listening to a lecture. And I especially love observing how small, consistent changes can have a big impact on one's physical, spiritual and mental health.
Last year, post-Pesach, while shopping for Shabbos with one of my kids, we came along a bakery with some particularly delicious looking cakes*. You know the type: fluffy with lots of frosting. I'm never one for a complete boycott of any food item, so even though this cake didn't fit my definition of food (unprocessed, whole, healthy) , I indulged my son and purchased the cake for the kids to enjoy as their Friday night dessert.
They were excited to see it as I brought it out after our Shabbos meal. I served them each a piece and they all dug in. Less than three bites into the cake, each child was done. I was surprised. I figured they would love it. Especially since it wasn't something that usually came into our house...
The consensus was that the cake was too sweet and tasted funny. Well, I could have told them that and saved myself 40 nis, but it was great they all figured it out on their own.
Never without a nutritional lesson up my sleeve, (which my preteen is past the age of enjoying!), I stuck the cake in a cupboard. Every few months I pull it out to remind my kids why we don't eat commercially manufactured baked goods. Or anything that has an indefinite shelf life. The cake is still intact. No bugs came to consume it. It didn't grow any mold and it pretty much looks the same as when I bought it. It's obviously not real food and must have been a mistake.
A mistake? Or a product of mutant, post-industrialization, food technology that allows food manufacturers to produce products which will reduce their waste cost, increase their profit margins, and leave us, not with a bitter taste in our mouth-simply too much sugar for that, but perhaps a feeling that something isn't quite right.
So, next time you reach for that bread that can withstand time, perhaps you could set it back on the shelf and take yourself to a bakery that makes some real food. I recommend The Natural Choice on Agrippas...and yes, I've made that suggestion several times. So I really mean it. Go. Put down your phone. Go now.
*Cake is till in my cupboard til Pesach cleaning comes around. Email me for a photo if you need some motivation;)