How do you go from gumbo, crab cakes, deviled eggs, and roasted pork (possum?) to “soul food wasn’t nothin’ but salt and grease?” How do you go from a plant-based diet (yes, our ancestors, despite the drop ins of pork and other meats, ate a plant-based diet) rich in fruits and vegetables, light on meat (because, hey hey, they couldn’t afford it), and supplemented with unprocessed grain as a filler, to having some man in an Ivory Tower tell you that the reason your people don’t eat healthy food is because they have a hereditary slave palate that determines whether or not they are healthy eaters?
Let’s get something clear. Black Americans aren’t the only ones overweight in this country. Black Americans bought into the same swindle that the rest of the country bought into and were hurt even more because, while the rest of the country had enough money to pull itself out of the rabbit hole of processed food and obesity, Black Americans by and large did not. Two thirds of Black America may be fat, but guess what? Two thirds of America is fat, too.
Soul food is not to blame for our nutritional woes. A willingness to blame soul food for Black America’s current ailments resulted in complaints about “vegetables being boiled to death” replacing what used to be excitement for receiving a plate of braised string beans with corn bread. Why corn bread? Simple: the corn bread was used to sop up the “pot liquor” from the string beans. (“Pot liquor” is what’s left in the pot after vegetables have been treated. Studies – studies, mind you, that were done long after our ancestors were doing this – show that vegetables that are boiled actually have the vitamins and minerals boiled out of them, resulting in a vitamin-rich broth left in the pot after all the servings.
Hell, the corn bread of today isn’t even the corn bread of yesterday – is your corn meal organic? Your ancestors’ corn meal was. Is your corn meal from genetically modified, hyper-processed corn kernels? Your ancestors’ corn was not. Do you have a propensity for “sweet corn bread?” That’s neither a “North” nor a “South” thing – that’s a processed food thing. You can thank “Jiffy” for the popularity of sweet corn bread.
You can also thank processed food for the increase in saltiness in soul food, too. Sure, soul food always used cured pork, but it was used so sparingly (very rare was the occasion that a Black family had access to the “better” parts of the pig and, therefore, were reluctant to squander what they had access to by eating whole parts at a time.) that it would’ve never had the same effects it had today. (And, while there are studies out regarding hypertension in the early 1900s, there are far more mitigating factors in blood pressure than simply “salt” and “smoking.” Think “factory conditions,” for starters.
Excerpted from Neither Soul Food, Nor “Slave Food,” Made You Fat | A Black Girl’s Guide To Weight Loss
63words asked: i don't think that there is any set timeline on when it is "right" to move in with someone. the guy i'm currently dating, we had been seeing each other for three months when i moved in with him as a temporary thing. six years later, we still enjoy living together. just trust your gut - although it also wouldn't be a bad idea to create a "just in case" fund with enough $$ to cover first months rent + deposit as a back up plan should things go awry.
you guys… you’re all so… fucking wonderful! thank you for your advice. this is just one snapshot into your sweet responses. it means a lot to me.
thanks for all being so awesome. i never expected to meet so many thoughtful, helpful, kind people on here. i feel very lucky.
Charlie will be joining Steve Hindy (Brooklyn Brewery) and Kim Jordan (New Belgium) to talk about craft beers on April 25th! Pick up your tickets here.
so, accidental boyfriend & i both have leases ending in july
this is sort of terrifying because it’s only been a few months… but, we really fucking get along, & balance each other, & he is more open about his feelings than i am used to which is really fucking refreshing & we talk about the future really freely, & am i crazy to think that we should start looking for a place together? we spend just about every night together anywho
holy shit, am i actually saying this? i am saying this.