All Articles Tagged "fast food"
My family SUCKED at being healthy. Over the past five years family members have been in and out of the hospital due to not going for regular check ups, many seizures/strokes, fibroids, hypertension and diabetes. Most, if not all of these deadly diseases, are a direct reflection of poor diet and exercise choices. Shortly after my aunt passed away in December 2012 – a woman whose last doctor’s appointment was in the early ’80s and who remained the picture of health until colon cancer claimed her – I got interested in eating healthier. I had given only a cursory glance to online articles about how food choices directly relate to cancer before, but now I was interested, if not heavily invested. It hit me all at once.
I didn’t have to wonder anymore. I didn’t have time to say, “I’ll get healthy tomorrow.” I didn’t try to talk myself out of it. I allowed the journey to begin. I started researching everything. Veganism and vegetarianism weren’t just hippie white folk fads anymore to me. They were real viable options for better health.
I didn’t see my body as indestructible anymore when I watched my mother hemorrhage to the point of near-death because of overgrown fibroid tumors. I didn’t take pride in the fact that I could eat whatever I wanted and still remain thin due to ridiculously high metabolism, as I watched my mother now struggle with her weight and her overall health. I didn’t feel good about my sedentary lifestyle when I watched people much older than me – I’m talking 70s and 80s – win battles against all sorts of terminal illnesses because they chose to educate themselves about nutrition and follow through with action. They were marathon runners, and I was sitting on the couch watching Ridiculousness eating Entenmann’s donuts. I’m 27. Things needed to change and they needed to change fast.
I first considered vegetarianism/veganism when I watched the documentary ‘Vegucated’. The film shows a young vegan filmmaker who finds three individuals of different demographics to participate in a month-long experiment of life as vegans. No meat, no animal byproducts, which includes cow’s milk, butter, eggs, etc. Not only did the documentary show how they navigated life free of meats and animal byproducts, it also showed how harmful a diet high in meat is to our overall health. It followed the documentary volunteers as they learned about the farming industry and genetic modification. They learned how to cook their own great meals free of meat or animal byproducts. It was inspiring to watch.
But could I forego the meat? Did I HAVE to? At this point, all I knew was that I wanted to be healthier. I wanted to have energy throughout the day without needing a shot of caffeine. I wanted to decrease my chances of developing a terminal illness. I wanted to be active. I just wanted good health, which I knew I did not have at this point. I may only be 107 pounds, but climbing a flight of stairs left me winded. Something was very wrong with that. So why not consider these other options?
I’m a black woman with a familial history of diabetes, high blood pressure, hypertension and fibroids. I was horribly unaware of ALL of this until my mother’s hysterectomy last January and my aunt’s passing in December. The year of 2012 was a wake up call for me. With heart disease, cancer, stroke and diabetes as the four leading causes of death in African Americans, perhaps consideration of a lifestyle change wasn’t so crazy. Perhaps substituting fresh produce for a McDonald’s burger wasn’t so mind-blowing. Sure, it’s not fast, but it’ll save my life. I’m with that. Our people are dying because we don’t care how/what we eat – it’s a tradition for African Americans to eat large portions of unhealthy foods, to have little to no real nutrition education, or to not have access to more than fast/processed foods.
So why not consider, at the very least, adding a surplus of fresh fruits and vegetables to our diets? Why not consider substituting fresh herbs and spices for the salt?
I have decided to try a vegan diet. Not to prove anything, but just to see how much I can do. I have had a “I can’t live without meat!” mentality for most of my life. And honestly, I don’t know how I’m going to survive without butter, but the fun of it is to test the waters and see what happens. In deciding to take responsibility for my life, researching and exploring new ways to do so is a no-brainer. Though I am still in the research phase – gathering a nice little library of vegan meal and snack recipes, I am eating so many more fruits and vegetables in a day, I’ve taken up running and Pilates, and I’m planning to run two 5Ks by the end of the year. The cycle ends with me because I refuse to leave my health in the hands of anyone else. I’ve got one body and even if veganism doesn’t pan out for me – I’ve learned too much about the immense amount of freedom in food choices to go back to donut binges. I plan on sticking around.
I’m a Black woman who is considering veganism. I’m no less Black. I’m not crazy. I’m finally health-conscious.
Documentaries you should check out:
La Truly seeks to encourage thought, discussion and change among young women through her writing. Follow her on Twitter: @AshleyLaTruly and AboutMe www.about.me/latruly.
As much as you try your hardest to always pack your lunch, it’s only inevitable that you will find yourself inside a fast food chain at some point. Fast food is simple, very affordable, and, well, fast makes it a top option for people on the go.
Does your mouth just water at the thought of a juicy burger and fries? Hold the mayo people, because too much bad food can really do your body harm. There’s obesity, heart disease, and so many other preventable issues that come with the regular indulgence of fast food.
It’s good to know there are healthier options at an affordable price. Whether you make substitutions to your meal or opt for something different, the littlest of changes can go a long way.
Not all celebrities are born into a famous family, and not all of them got their break as soon as they came of age. Instead, like many of us, there are some celebs who had some pretty common jobs that they had to work in order to make ends meet — since the money wasn’t rolling in right off the bat and for these 15 celebs that common job was working at a fast food restaurant.
While growing up in New Jersey, at the age of 15, Queen Latifah found herself working her first job at Burger King. Just three years later, Queen Latifah was beat boxing for the group Ladies Fresh. Her big break came in 1988 when Dante Ross heard a demo tape of her song, Princess of the Posse. Since then her career as a Hollywood star has grown and grown.
According the CNN Money, Burger King announced Thursday that it has terminated its relationship with European supplier Silvercrest Foods after the discovery of “very small trace levels of equine DNA.” In other words, Burger King found out that one of the companies that provides it with its “100% Beef” burgers also had horse meat in its midst. Burger King stands by its claims that the tainted food never made it to restaurants or was sold to customers.
The Guardian has a statement from the burger chain:
“Our independent DNA test results on product taken from restaurants were negative for any equine DNA. However, four samples recently taken from the Silvercrest plant have shown the presence of very small trace levels of equine DNA. Within the last 36 hours, we have established that Silvercrest used a small percentage of beef imported from a non-approved supplier in Poland. They promised to deliver 100% British and Irish beef patties and have not done so. This is a clear violation of our specifications, and we have terminated our relationship with them.”
Burger King spokeswoman Kristen Hauser said in an email that Burger King’s U.S. restaurants don’t use meat from Silvercrest. However, the issue of horse meat making its way into beef products via Silvercrest is a big one overseas.
“We have stringent and overlapping controls to ensure that the products we sell to our customers meet our strict quality standards,” she said.
Ireland’s Food and Safety Authority noted that the products in question don’t pose a safety risk and that from its own tests of Polish-imported Silvercrest meat used for burger production, about four percent contained traces of horse.
There are people around the world (and throughout history) who have enjoyed horsemeat. But ewwww. I’m not quite sure what horse tastes like, but with all the processed food most people eat now a days I don’t’ know if anyone would have been the wiser.
Get ready to pay more for your meals. The nation’s farmers are dealing with what Bloomberg describes as “a worst-in-a-generation drought” that will send food prices higher. States from the Midwest to the West Coast have experienced a severe lack of rain, leading to crop losses and price increases.
Shoppers already faced higher prices in 2011, but experts predict that prices will go even higher this year and next. The full impact of the lack of rain will come into sharper view in August and September.
Corn, soybean, and wheat crops have been pummeled, which, in turn, impacts the production of tons of other foods, including meat, cereal, and milk. And it’s not just the meals you’ll be making at home that will be affected. It’s expected that fast food prices will also go up as the prices for their ingredients also increase.
In the short term, we may actually see the price for meat decrease as farmers reduce the size of their herds to save money. But any price improvements will be short-lived.
More on Madame Noire Business!
- Behind The Click: Tara Roberts, Co-Founder of GirlTank
- Entrepreneur Spotlight: Wedding Photographer Amber Knowles on Building Her Studio
- How CARA B Naturally’s Founders Launched A Natural Skin & Hair Care Company For Ethnic Children
- Entrepreneur Spotlight: Meet The Women Behind The Groupon of Black Hair, The Fly Cut
- Do Black Designers Skip Over Black Models to Gain White Customers?
- How She Made It: Alia Jones-Harvey, Producer of A Streetcar Named Desire
On Friday, a grand jury refused to indict Rayon McIntosh, the McDonald’s worker who viciously beat two unruly female customers at the restaurant in Greenwich Village Oct. 18.
Many thought McIntosh’s previous 11-year stint for manslaughter would do him in after beating the customers with a steel and aluminum pole, but after 11 days of reviewing evidence and witness testimony, the prosecution was forced to drop the case.
McIntosh, who said he feared for his life and had no choice but to defend himself when the women slapped, spit, and shouted insults at him, now plans to sue the fast-food chain, blaming McDonald’s for putting him in that situation. He claims employees warned the franchise owner of fights, drunken customers, and even guns inside the restaurant, yet nothing was done.
“I do plan on bringing a civil suit against McDonald’s for putting me in danger,” McIntosh told the NY Daily News. “If a security guard would have been there, this wouldn’t have happened.”
Do you agree with the grand jury’s decision not to indict McIntosh? What about his plans to sue the McDonald’s chain, do you think he has a case?
Brande Victorian is a blogger and culture writer in New York City. Follower her on Twitter at @be_vic.
More on Madame Noire!
(BET) — McDonald’s is doing damage control over a hoax that will not die. Over the weekend, a photo claiming that McDonald’s was charging African-American customers an extra $1.50 as an “insurance measure” because the store had been recently robbed in a string of robberies was making the Internet rounds.
(The Economist) — BORN in a black township in 1952, Cyril Ramaphosa rose to become South Africa’s leading trade unionist, switching to politics and then to business after the end of apartheid. He became one of the country’s richest men, and is still occasionally mentioned as a possible future president. Now he is the face of McDonald’s in Africa’s biggest economy. Mr Ramaphosa, who once said his favourite meal was fish with salad, will own and run all the American burger giant’s operations in the country, including 132 outlets. He will have a 20-year franchise and a mandate to “turbocharge” growth. The price of the deal has not been revealed. Since opening its first restaurant in South Africa in 1995, McDonald’s has struggled against fierce home-grown competition. Famous Brands, its main rival, has more than 1,100 outlets, operating under such names as Steers, Wimpy and Mugg & Bean.
Are buckets of chicken and wheel-sized burgers weapons of mass destruction in the black community?
Flavor Flav of Public Enemy fame has plans to open a chain of chicken joints, striving to “fight the power” of KFC by bringing the aroma of Flav-seasoned chicken to a corner near you.
If Flav’s Fried Chicken — or FFC — ends up serving good ‘n healthy meals, amen. But if it ends up being just another fast food joint, more African Americans may pack on extra pounds.
The war against obesity in black America hasn’t really gotten started yet. Every day, millions of black kids and adults walk into fast food restaurants, put a hurtin’ on some burgers, and walk out with “super-sized” bodies.
Some take this simple act of eating as a sign that black America is committing culinary suicide. The chosen weapons of mass destruction aren’t only burgers; they are deep buckets of chicken, sugary drinks, and even 2,500-plus calorie burgers the size of hubcaps.
“Food companies have a long history of marketing unhealthy products to minority communities, especially blacks and Hispanics,” said renowned nutritionist Marion Nestle. “Fast food chains are often the only restaurants in low income communities.” Alternatives for nutritious food, thus, are limited.
Nestle, the author of a book called “Food Politics,” noted that single parent families have a greater incidence of obesity than two-parent families, saying “this is associated with higher levels of poverty.”
In her book, she points out that companies seek to expand food sales by lobbying government agencies, forging alliances with health professionals, marketing to children, selling junk food as health food, and getting laws passed that “favor corporate health over human health.”
“Race-based obesity” is an ugly reality in America. “It reflects national statistics,” she said. Using “body mass index” (calculations correlating weight to height) as a gauge, four out of five African American women are considered either overweight or obese, national studies have found.
The prevalence of obesity among African Americans is 51% higher than for whites, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A national medical journal study found that the prevalence of obesity is 26% for black girls ages 6 to 19, compared to 15% for white girls in the same age group. Also, 37% of black men are obese, compared to 32% of white men, and 7% of black men were extremely obese, compared to 4% of white men.
“The overabundance of fast food and the lack of access to healthier foods have increased the African American community’s vulnerability to food-related death and disease as compared to whites,” said Andrea Freeman, author of the California Law Review article “Fast Food: Oppression through Nutrition.”
(Time) — Normally, the opening of a fried-chicken restaurant in Clinton, Iowa, wouldn’t make much news, but that, presumably, is why the restaurant’s owner has partnered with Flavor Flav. The Public Enemy rapper, who has become a fixture on outré reality-TV shows, has decided to leverage his recent VH1-fueled fame in one of the happiest ways possible: by giving his name to a fried-chicken chain, set to open its first outlet sometime this year. “The Colonel better watch his back, G,” Flav boasted in late January. “The Colonel might end up in my fryer.”