Friday, March 19, 2010

Personal Responsibility

I apologize for the text-heavy post, but I don't want to get in trouble with any logo or copyright police.
In case you haven't noticed, I am a foodie. I believe dining should be an experience that involves all the senses. Recently, I have been thinking a lot about where our food comes from, how it's processed, what what its true cost is. I'm not saying I make the best decisions all the time, but I am making a conscious effort to better understand what I'm consuming and how it affects me.
I can't tell you when it happened, but I'd like to share with you some of the things that have influenced my thinking along the way. A couple of months ago, I wrote this blog post about meeting Chef Leslie Ashburn (@macrohawaii) and the Kapiolani Community College Farmers' Market. I had been to KCC a time or two before that, but it was never really a priority for me. I would rather have some extra sleep on a Saturday than fight the crowds for a few fruits and veggies. Somehow, though, that meeting and the subsequent visit really inspired me to start making a change. A few weeks after that, I watched a little documentary called Food, Inc. It radically altered the way I perceive the entire food industry and I can pretty much guarantee that it will do the same for you. Fast forward to today and you have @loodge, a friend of mine, retweeting this @veggietweets post about a one year old Happy Meal.
You may be reading this saying to yourself, "Yeah, so what? I'm still going to keep eating the things I like because it tastes good. Who cares what's in it or where it came from?" Sadly, in this case, ignorance is not bliss. Choosing to ignore the facts won't stop the inevitable from happening. Just ask the person in this Oprah video who lost her leg because she refused to come to terms with the fact that she was diabetic.
So what can you do? Author Michael Pollan puts it like this, "Eat food. Mostly plants. Not too much." Sounds simple enough, doesn't it? You can also start shopping at a LOCAL farmers' market (for a listing of the ones in Hawaii, click here) or get involved with a Community Supported Agriculture initiative like this one with Ma'o Organic Farms (@maoorganicfarms).
You know, there's a lot of talk these days about health care reform. People want to blame insurance companies or doctors for the rapidly rising costs. In my opinion, we're starting to pay the real price for cheap, convenient, non-nutritious food. The biggest change to the health care system will come when people like you and me start taking personal responsibility for the decisions we make on a daily basis. I am ready and willing to try something new for the sake of building a sustainable future. Will you join me?

1 comment:

  1. Mike you have good thought here and I'm glad to see take a step forward towards the real health issues. Have you considered posting this on Kanu? If you have an account you can post it as a journal to your page.

    Mahalo for sharing. Conversations like this make a great start for positive change.