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A Healthy Diet

September 18, 2016

I recently read an article on the Mediterranean diet.  The upshot of it is: the Mediterranean diet doesn’t exist.  It’s what people in the Mediterranean region ate 100 years ago.  Now they eat the same food that everybody in western countries eats.  The Mediterranean diet is only something that people can aspire to now.  The article states that it consisted mainly of a great deal of vegetables with very little red meat.  The food was served in several courses, but in small portions each time.  We don’t eat that way anymore.

I also read about the famous chef Escoffier recently.  He brought flavour to food, with sauces and gravies, and serving food hot.  He also served food in many courses.  People didn’t feel stuffed at the end of a meal because each course had small portions.  We don’t eat that way anymore either.

A couple of years ago, I read about a new restaurant chain moving into this city.  It was in the business news.  It said that this restaurant chain competed in the market for large portions of food at reasonable prices.  I have eaten there a few times.  The food is good, but the portions are indeed enormous.

What is it about portion size anyway?  I have a limited capacity for food.  I don’t like to feel stuffed.  Consequently, I prefer small portions.  I also try to eat everything on my plate.  I order from the senior’s menu if the restaurant has one.  Often it’s impossible for me to find something small enough.  I know that people in my group often groan when they see how large the portions are.  I know that some of them order from the appetizer menu.  Don’t these places know what people want?  Don’t they know that eating too much is the main cause of obesity.

Courses too seem to have disappeared, at least courses in the style of the Mediterranean diet, or in the style of Escoffier.  Now the whole thing comes on one large plate.  Doing it that way is easier on the kitchen staff.  Serving an entire meal, exclusive of appetizer and desert courses, on a single plate seems to have become the norm.  I know that upscale restaurants do serve food in courses, but I’m reluctant to try them now because I’m sure I’d be way too full.

Why are portions so large?  Clearly it’s because that’s what many people expect.  I suppose they want good value for their money, and only feel they are getting that when they are served that much food.  No doubt some people eat it all too.  I certainly couldn’t do that, and would not want to be able to do that.

The only place, outside of my home, where I’ve seen small portions of food served is at my parent’s senior’s home.  The soup comes in a tiny bowl that’s only slightly larger than the soup spoon.  When you ask for eggs at breakfast, you get one egg.  Their sandwiches are thin enough to actually fit in your mouth.  These portions are perfect for the people who live there because most of them are quite inactive.  Indeed, many of them ask for half portions at meal times.  You can also ask for double portions, although I’ve never seen people do that.

Why can’t restaurants serve small portions too?  The food may look wonderful.  It may be full of flavour.  I may even enjoy eating it, but my impression is spoiled by the feeling that I’ve eaten too much.

 

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