i need to do – BE – something epic. i need to change our collective grasp of what it means to be healthy and how to get there. i am a person possessed with this thought: our food (what it is, where it comes from, how it’s raised) is the single most important component of our success as a nation.
not only is a country crippled by rampant obesity, diabetes and other diseases brought on by poor nutrition incapable of defending itself on an international scale (here i’m thinking of the “too fat to fight” declaration military officials have recently made), but it is also crumbling within. too many nutritionally-deficient Americans are unable to work the jobs required to rebuild our faltering economy, beset by rising healthcare costs that send the afflicted into a downward spiral of mounting debt, and the majority receive mixed information from the government agencies that are supposed to help them using stale, misinformed data from studies likely funded by the corn industry. the worst part? it’s only projected to get worse.
but what can i do about it?
honestly, i’m not sure.
options i’ve considered:
– holistic health practitioner (naturopathic doctor)
– organic, sustainable small farmer
– cafe/restaurateur using all organic, locally-grown, whole foods
– registered dietitian
however, none of those options would work on a macro scale. each has a limited sphere of influence (unless I started a health blog to complement my practice, but I honestly think there are too many of those already – that’s a whole other post) that does not line up with my dreams of changing the system as a whole. moreover, at least with the scientific degrees I mentioned, it irritates me (and i am a little insulted) that I need a degree to legitimize my belief that real food grown in the ground or raised on a pasture is healthier for you than something manufactured, deodorized and pumped with chemicals in a machine before being hermetically sealed and delivered to a grocery store.
shouldn’t that be common sense?
so far as actually owning a working farm myself, to attempt to have macro influence at that level would utterly defeat the point of being a small, local, sustainable farm, not to mention detract from any responsibilities there.
after wrestling with this for some time, i have finally decided that what will suit me best is a master’s in public health. since I got a b.a. in Arabic, I clearly have quite a few prereq’s to take (eight, to be exact) as well as the GRE. while I am not at all excited about acquiring any more student loan debt, I do think this may be the only way I can make the changes in our country that need to happen if our society is to flourish.
my current (and admittedly broad) goals are to:
nourish others through whole, sustainable, real foods
restructure our industrialized agricultural system to one that is not only sound, safe, and sustainable but in a way that actually benefits omnia economically, emotionally, physically
reach out to the average american (NOT the stereotypical wheatgrass-chugging yuppie) who thinks processed gmo vegetable oil is better for their health than naturally and locally-made bacon fat, and who has probably never heard of kombucha let alone substituted it for soda
but the question remains: HOW?
i shall continue to ponder that & get back to you when i come up with a viable answer. in the mean time, please enjoy a gratuitous picture of roux: