Wednesday, November 25, 2020
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Cooking is an Underrated Skill

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Bing! That sound reverberates in college dormitories across the US. That sound signals that food is ready. The doors of microwaves open. Mashed potatoes, mac and cheese, even a whole dinner, come out. The smell of that particular meal meshes with the evidence of past meals. This cycle repeats every day.

There has been many a want for more healthy foods. However, most people are lazy, and still want to rely on meals that simply do not need a lot of attention. At most, the oven might be used. However, this reliance on pre-made meals does not do anything for our health. Preservatives, including the three pillars of the food industry, salt, sugar, and fat, are added not only to help preserve the food for long periods, but also to increase the allure. Allure is not only making the food taste pleasant, but it is also making the food wanted repeatedly. Even foods touting themselves as ‘healthy’ cannot break away from heavy reliance on these pillars and preservatives. When New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg proposed that food companies voluntarily lessen the amount of salt, sugar, and fat in their products, Mars Inc, the company producing many candies, put up not the candies, but rice.

And so, people must learn to fend for themselves, in a world where the microwave does not equate to health. Therefore, we must learn to cook. When you cook, you cannot only get ingredients in their prime, helping you to get more nutrition, but also you can regulate the amount of everything that goes in. Sensitive to salt? Well, just put less in there. A company won’t retool its lines just for you. Furthermore, cooking allows you to experience foods that are more flavorful. Many packaged foods are purposefully bland or mild in order to reach the greatest number of people. Ever notice on a packaged pizza how the tomato sauce is bland and flat, and they don’t use strong cheeses like blue, brie, or gruyere? When you cook, you can adjust the spicing to your own personal liking.

We must also teach children to cook. In the 1980’s and 1990’s, convenience foods and prepackaged foods were floating on money. Many people bought them, and they became ingrained into society. Now, many people from that era complain that they cannot cook. We cannot let the same problem happen to the children of today, lest they be caught in this trap. So learn, because in knowledge comes power, power to retake the fort of health.

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