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Taste Buds Rehab

November 14, 2021 | Healthy Diet

I recently read a startling fact…in the 1970’s the average supermarket in the United States carried around 15,000 products. Today, that supermarket has almost 50,000 items… WOW!

On the surface, that sounds great… more choices and variety. But scratch that surface just a bit and you will find it’s mostly just a “pseudo-variety”.

Think about it…have we found a thousand new species of fish in the ocean deep? (Ah…NO!). Have we developed thousands of new strains of fruits and vegetables… not really.

What has happened is food engineers (yes, that’s a thing!) have found thousands of new and ingenious ways to combine the same basic ingredients into many different products that seem and taste different but nutritionally are not. What are these ingredients? Glad you asked! Basically, its soy, corn, wheat, rice, sugar, some type of oil and salt. These same basic ingredients are then formulated and re-formulated into the chemical concoction known as the Standard American Diet (SAD), which, if we are going to be honest…tastes pretty good! But, if we’re going to be really, really honest is not real food (for the most part) but are edible food-like substances.

Those devious food engineers have hijacked our desire for sweet, salty, fatty foods. The desire for these types of foods was helpful 50,000 years ago when our species was foraging on the African savannah for roots and berries but has become a real problem today when a bag of chips seems like a better idea than a bag of apples.

If you’ve been eating SAD for your whole life, then “Real Food” may not seem as tasty as what you’re used to. Therein lies the problem. How do you rehab your taste buds so that real food (ya know…apples, oranges, broccoli and Brussel sprouts) actually tastes good?  We have acclimated to food that has too much sugar, salt and fat. Like an actual rehab process, this may take several weeks or months, so please be patient. We are trying to change habits that have become ingrained over a long period of time.

By Dr. Michael Bilof

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