My last entry here was titled, “Smelling the Roses.” It’s about pacing yourself and not being swamped by your work and other obligations. But when I entered the titled, I was reminded of the first time I saw my wife prune back some rose bushes she had planted. Cut them back to the point that I thought she’d killed them. And I told her as much, to which she derisively laughed, assuring me they would surely rise again, looking better than before. I should’ve known better, but some months later, sure enough they had grown back bigger and more robust than ever.
My wife has a green thumb. Everything she plants or touches that comes from the ground seems to reach its full potential for which the Good Lord intended. The only thing special about my thumb is I sprained it years ago catching a basketball in a half-attentive state. But I’ve never had much luck with plants. The best I’ve ever done is with some tomatoes, but only after going through two years of some kind of fungus that destroyed them. Same for some squash I planted in the back yard. Big beautiful, rich, and luster-like, leaves were showing as the plants were growing, only to have the darn things not grow the fruit part of the plant that produces the delicious edible vegetable. Had a nursery worker tell me that he thought I had too much lime in the soil. He said, in so many words, it was as if the plant had been castrated. My luck. So I gave up on coaxing Mother Earth and now leave it to my wife who is our Chairman of the Landscape Board.
So what’s any of this got to do with health and medicine? Not much unless we’re going to talk about plant-based eating, seeing as such that planting tomatoes and squash, among other things, to bring to the dinner table is really not a bad idea. Oh, I also tried growing some bean sprouts a few years ago. There’s an interesting thing going on now, this year, with respect to plant-based eating, vegetarianism, and such. There’s been an upswing, this year, in the amount of interest people have with eschewing meat and meat products, in favor of food grown from the ground. And the interest has been driven by new technology, “food science,” that is now able to take plants and transform them, taste-wise, into meat-tasting products.
The company Good Catch has advanced “food science” and now offers a six-legume blend that has the taste and texture of tuna. The company has also figured out how to transform peas, lentils, chickpeas, soy, fava, and navy beans into something that approximates “the exact flakiness of tuna fish.” The briny flavor is made by including DHA-rich algal oil. This product may be for those die-hards who would like a tuna salad sandwich without the mercury, the cruelty, or the contribution to the marine ecosystem collapse.
But probably the most popular “food science” product known in these parts is the Impossible Burger and the Beyond Meat burger. One burger is soy-based, the other pea-based. Both products may or may not be known to the reader to be fraught with the perhaps not so desired GMO element. I will try to shed insight and explain in the next blog the pros and cons of the Impossible Burger.
Till then, know that beets actually can clean the plaque from your coronary arteries.