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The bacon revolution

I was recently approached by an international documentary team to quote on creating their film trailer.  They are based in the States and putting the finishing touches onto a documentary about the Paleo lifestyle.  Its quite common for productions to get another editor/production company to then cut a trailer for them. They do this because either they are totally snowed under and can’t think about a trailer or they realise they are too close to the film and its best to bring in a second set of eyes and ears, or both!

The project hasn’t moved forward for us as yet, but the topic of the film got me thinking. Food has become a major issue in middle class society. In fact, it has become, I believe a major dividing point for many.  Ever since Tim Noakes turned around and publicly changed his mind about carbs, everything we have been told about food seems to have changed.  Well, maybe it started even before Prof. Noakes, with Jamie Oliver, taking us to see how the lamb you eat is slaughtered in Italy (as opposed to the UK) and then taking on the British government’s lunches for kids.  Some would have us believed it started with a guy called Banting that no-one had ever heard of but everyone now speaks oh-so knowledgeably about.

I’ve been privileged to observe in close up, the change in mindset of Cape Town’s fitness elite – from anti-fat and high carb to pasture-reared meat and ditching the croissants in favour of coconut oil. And despite the zealous look in the eyes of those “converted”, it is hard not to appreciate the benefits of a plant-based diet, eating animals that have been raised and slaughtered respectfully and cutting down on refined sugars and flour.

From a totally different perspective the “fat revolution” has changed the way nutritionalists treat eating disorders (and here Cape Town is leading the world in its approach). It has long been believed that over-eating and bulimic episodes can be “triggered” by white flour and sugar and finally there is proof. I personally believe that a more holistic and thoughtful approach to food in general, will speak to fewer young girls turning to anorexia as a coping mechanism.

Lastly, I am deep inside the belly of the “mommy wars” around food. Once you have a child, you realise that everything that goes into both your and their body, needs to be interrogated.  This can lead to some serious OCD-level obsession, high volume debate and also total exhaustion (on behalf of desperate mothers). The bottom line is you want the best quality stuff going into little bodies, before they become sallow and polluted like the rest of us.  The level to which you choose to take this quality control is, of course, up to you. For me, it changes daily depending on our levels of patience (me), cooperation (child) and availability (blergh, I hate supermarkets), but we generally try not to ruin the young one’s gut before we absolutely have to.

Anyway, all this bring me to my original point, which is, food used to be the dividing point between the haves and have-nots, but now it appears amongst the “haves” we are further dividing ourselves around differing beliefs about the necessity of organic fruit, home-made tomatoe sauce and venison bone broth.  While I am always keen to dive headlong into a diet as free of preservatives, pesticides, colourants and flavourants as possible, doing the work that we do and spending a lot of time with less privileged people, it does sometimes feel in very stark and crazy contrast.

Read more about the Paleo film here.

Follow the Sugar Free Princess here.

And check out Cape Town’s hottest food spot, Bacon on Bree here.