Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Why should I listen to anything Jane Brody has to say?

This is a woman who was stupid enough to get both her knees replaced at the same time.  So okay, we all make mistakes, but forewarned is forearmed.

I mention this because I was reading an article by her about the nutritional power of nuts in today's Times when I came across this nugget ...
Finally, in a 2013 study in The British Journal of Nutrition, Dr. Mattes and colleagues reported that consuming peanut butter or peanuts for breakfast helps to control hunger, stabilizing blood sugar and reducing the desire to eat for up to 8 to 12 hours. (My favorite breakfast: half a banana, sliced, with each slice topped by a half-teaspoon of crunchy peanut butter.)
Really?  A half a fucking banana and a teaspoon of peanut butter?  That's your breakfast?

This angers me.  It feels like dietary elitism of the worst kind.  I can see Ms. Brody staring over at me and saying something like "I can't believe you are eating that whole banana.  You're going to blow up like a whale."

I would be far less annoyed, perhaps not annoyed at all, if she'd just written "My favorite breakfast: slices of banana topped with peanut butter."  But she's giving me a recipe, complete with portions, then tarting it up on the back end, in the most calculated way, with the word "crunchy."

Who doesn't like crunchy peanut butter?

For the record, Google tells me that half a banana is about 60 calories.  A teaspoon of peanut butter is approximately 30 calories.  So that's 90.  Add some lovely hot tea (no milk or sugar) and you're still at 90.  And yes, I understand that food is vastly more complicated than just calories, but still?  A 90 calorie breakfast?  I think for lunch I'll have a tablespoon of peas and some cucumber water.  Three ounces of steamed fish for dinner, drizzled with 16th of a teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil and a leaf of raw kale.  Perhaps some more tea.

Lovely.  Fitness awaits.  And I know I won't be hungry because I had all that crunchy peanut butter for breakfast!

Back to the article about nuts.  Aside from shooting herself in the foot with her "favorite breakfast" comment, the rest of the piece is good.  Particularly interesting, although I'd already read about it elsewhere, is the notion of introducing peanuts to very small children with an eye towards reducing peanut allergies.

Ms. Brody's travails with bi-lateral knee replacement surgery can be read here.  There's a small, petty part of me -- perhaps two tablespoons -- that's glad it hurt like hell.

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