See something, say something?

When you’re talking with someone, and they have a booger hanging off their nose, or something stuck in their teeth, do you say something? I think the conventional wisdom is that a true friend does in fact speak up. So let me ask you, does the same rule apply when it comes to health?

For example:

Spraying on sunscreen. In South Florida, I get frequent opportunities to soak up the sun. However, at the pool and beach, I always find fellow sunseekers coating themselves in sunscreen.

I don’t get it. Why stride out to the pool with your book and towel, if your pool prep includes blocking the sun’s nourishing rays? You’re in a sports car trying to drive around with the parking brake engaged.

If you’re worried about getting burned, limit your time in direct sun. Or put on a hat. I want to run up to these people and beg them to stop spreading a suspected carcinogen all over themselves and their children: “Ma’am, please stop intercepting the source of energy that every living thing has evolved with for over 4 billion years.” 

I can’t believe it’s called supper. My brother-in-law is a grill master. A real savant with the spatula. However, his first step when making his side dish corn-on-the-cob is to slather inflammatory industrial sludge all over them. Every time, I’m tempted to grab the tray of greasy grains and toss it over the balcony.

I wonder how many people know that margarine is nothing more than whipped seed oil. (Or, as Wikipedia calls it, “a spreadable emulsion of vegetable oil” – yuck.) These oils ought to banned for human consumption as a Group 1 carcinogen, in the same category as cigarettes or asbestos.

If you want to understand the depth of rot and corruption in Big Medicine, consider the packaging and website of one well-known margarine brand. The brand boasts that it has been “Certified as a Heart Healthy food by the American Heart Association*.” If you follow the asterisk from the headline to the bottom of the web page, it says:

*Supportive but not conclusive scientific evidence suggests that eating about 1½ tablespoons (20.5g) daily of soybean oil, which contains unsaturated fat, may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease.

Pop quiz. The chemical in soybean oil that reduces the risk of heart disease is:

  1. Pixie dust
  2. Alien DNA
  3. The power of positive thinking

Mindless eating. I’m having this problem at kids’ birthday parties, but also on airplanes. Just because someone puts food (“food”) in front of you doesn’t mean you have to stuff it into your piehole. What really gets me about airplane food is not even the main dish, but the square piece of cake that adds insulin to injury. I want to grab the disposable plastic containers from the trays of everyone around me and throw them down the aisle. I refrain, however, after considering the uncomfortable conversation I’d have on the ground with some federal marshals.

In any event, my fellow travelers, feel free to leave the cake in its box. Hand it back to the flight attendants when they come around to collect the rest of the trash.

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