Control Issues

4 Jan

Control issues are everywhere when you are a mom.  Its a mine field!  One of the biggest control issues we face is portion control.  When “Supersize Me” becomes part of pop culture, that’s trouble.  Portion control is out of control!  But is there blame to be laid somewhere for this?  It is complicated.

Consumers want more for their money.  Our culture equates food with positive emotion.  Food is good company.  More is better.  Fact or fiction?  I would say a little of both.  First things first.

Consumers drive the market.  That is fact.  Processing food had become cheaper, so restaurants and food companies can offer a better perceived value, with value being larger portions.  Portions have slowly become larger, and consumers eat it up…literally!  So consumers are happy and satisfied.  That means that consumers will return, and the market works like it should.  But there is a price to pay.

Our culture equates food with positive emotion, most often love. Fact.  Our culture is becoming increasingly more isolated with media being instantaneous and replacing some amount of direct contact.  Food can, at times, replace some emotional contact.  Why walk over to your friend’s house?  Just text.  And there goes the direct contact. And eat while texting.  Right out of the bag of chips with no portion control. This goes along with the next point.

Food is good company.  Fiction!  Its true that food is emotional, and that is indisputable.  As a foodie, I take great pleasure in good food.  But pleasure can come in small packages.  And it isn’t good company.  Enjoying food with food friends and family is good company.  Enjoying the fellowship of food is good company.  Food is not.  Delicious food can be enjoyed with a few bites, a proper portion, a couple of ounces.  Is food really more enjoyable when a huge portion is consumed?  It is worth a try to focus on the fellowship of food, and not the food itself.

More is better.  Fiction.  We have been immersed in this bigger is better attitude on all fronts.  Banks, food, houses, the list continues.  We can’t escape it.  This has also contributed to our portion control (or as I like to call it, portion out of control).  More is not always better.  Pushing away from the table uncomfortably full is not better.  Large portions leading to increasing heartburn is not better.

This must be fought on all fronts.  Large portions permeate our society, and it is complicated.  And desired on some level.  It is up to everyone to increase awareness, and decrease portion size.  To put this into perspective, an appropriate serving size for a toddler is 1 tablespoon per year of age.  Just think about how often toddlers at, say, a fast food restaurant, receive a much larger portion than that.  With that adult size portion, toddlers are often encouraged to finish their meal.  With not a vegetable in sight.  Or milk.  Lets begin to raise awareness about this complicated issue.  It is imperative to good health!

 

 

 

 

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