That, my friends is the KFC "Chicken Chicken Sandwich." I don't know if it's new or not, or if it is even still on the KFC menu; given the fact that I rarely eat at fast food restaurants, I wouldn't be surprised if this was in fact very old news. But tonight at dinner, Husband asked me if I'd heard of it, the sandwich with no bread, just more meat. So I looked it up. And this is what I found.
Let me tell you something, interwebs. The fact that there are people out there who think this looks edible, nay, that there are people out there who think this looks GOOD, and who would slap down $6 to eat 1200 calories worth of fried chicken, bacon, cheese and mystery sauce scares the everloving crap out of me.
I've been watching Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution and I am scared all kinds of crazy for this country. Children today are, for the first time in our history, likely to have shorter life expectancies than their parents. Really. Our life expectancy is going down--because we are eating ourselves to death. And letting, or rather, encouraging our kids to do the same.
Yeah, I've got 30 pounds to lose. I get that. So perhaps I'm not the *right* person to go off on a rant about the nation's eating habits as a whole. But holy freaking hell, people! The last episode I watched, Oliver is in front of the class room, holding up a tomato and NOT ONE child could identify it. Until he said "it's what they make ketchup from." Then the dimmest of little light bulbs went off in those little 1st grade heads. "Oh, for the french fries!!" Oh. my. head.
It's made me think about a LOT. I'm blessed with a kid who loves vegetables and fruit. He'd rather eat cucumbers than cookies and grapes more than candy. So that's fantastic. And perhaps it's why, as he is closing in on 4 years old, I can still pick his 28lb body up over my head when we're playing. But even with all that fruit and veggie lovin', the kid's had a frozen dinosaur-shaped breaded chicken habit for the past year. We really struggled to get the kid to eat protein, so when the dinosaur shaped lured him into eating chicken, we practically bought stock in the stuff. And they're all right as frozen breaded stuff goes, I guess. Zero trans-fats and all that. But still...chicken cut out into dinosaur shapes? I have to believe I can do better by my kid than that. At least most of the time.
In the past couple of weeks, we've really been working on eating whole foods, foods that are minimally processed and that are free of high fructose corn syrup. It's not always easy and we're not going for perfection as much as awareness and making wiser choices. In an attempt to know exactly what we're eating, I'm cooking more often. I so want to love cooking and to be a fabulous cook. But I don't really, and I'm certainly not. But I'm working on it, because it's important. And I'm starting to enjoy it more; seeing it as less of a chore and more of a pleasure. Having Ethan help me with dinner (washing vegetables, stirring, pouring, etc) has made it a lot easier and more fun. For years I "couldn't" make a real dinner because I was "too busy" playing with Ethan. Well, really, most of the time that was kind of an excuse.
And now I don't really feel like I have the luxury of that excuse. He's a not even 30lb almost 4 year old, but I could turn around "tomorrow" and find that he's in 3rd grade and knocking on obesity's door. And me? Well, I am staring down the barrel of 40 while hulking around what amounts to a second Ethan, all over my body. And after I made some steamed cauliflower with a light cheese sauce for Ethan and he asked for "more of the white stuff with cheese," I was pretty much hooked. Yes, he likes apples and cucumbers, but this is cauliflower, people!
Sometimes it frustrates me that I am 30lbs overweight, precisely because I DON'T eat the rot like that picture at the top of this post. I like fruits and veggies. I order salads at restaurants and all of that stuff. Don't get me wrong, I know what my food issues are and I know where the weight has come from. I'm not trying to play dumb here or throw down the "I have such a slooooowwwww metabolism!" excuse (I do, by the way, but still...I'm still responsible for working with that metabolism in a way that makes me healthy).
I just can't fathom what goes through the mind of a person who is driving through KFC and decides, "You know, that sandwich with bacon and cheese between two piece of fried chicken? That sounds goooooood." Where are we as a nation of eaters when ANY one of us thinks this is okay? I don't know, maybe I sound like a big judgy jerk because I think that's horrifying. Especially since I'm not running any marathons or in danger of being told by a doctor that I need to eat a sandwich or two. But even this chubby mommy can see the writing on the wall. Step away from the giant slabs of fried chicken, people!