A gift… because I love you.
I was amazed at the number of you who endorsed forgoing a range hood. The comments rolled in, practically faster than I could read them!
I got super excited and thrust my fist in the air, shouting – I WILL LEAD THIS REVOLUTION!
Then I started assembling a really snazzy uniform; because a good outfit is the foundation for all significant life-events, and a much-overlooked detail in most social uprisings. Also, I really hate to miss an opportunity to overdress.
But then I heard a deep and somber narrator’s voice; it said – Victoria was unaware that a disturbing theme was about to emerge… bacon.
You need a range hood because:
Bacon bacon bacon.
My fellow humans!
WHY ARE YOU EATING BACON?
Did the bacon people fail to send out a memo alerting the public to their exciting news: Bacon has been classified as a Group 1 carcinogen… Group 1 is: “things we KNOW FOR SURE CAUSE CANCER.”
The World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer has determined conclusively that consumption of meat is carcinogenic to humans.
Here is the World Health Org Q&A on the research.
Here is Harvard’s School of Public Health article on the research.
Here is the article in The Lancet’s oncology issue.
Now, I know you’re saying– but Victoria! Bacon is everyone’s favorite carcinogen!
And to that I say:
ARSENIC IS ALSO TOTALLY DELICIOUS!
And: gives your complexion an indescribably brilliancy!
Arsenic could totally make a comeback!
The Arsenic Industry just needs to band together! Create an Arsenic Counsel! Pool their resources to invest billions of dollars lobbying the USDA and the FDA!
Next, they should create a fun advertising campaign! With a catchy jingle! Featuring an attractive (but-not-distractingly-so!) “mom” in the kitchen, lovingly sprinkling arsenic on dinner!
Their slogan could be:
Arsenic! Small amounts won’t kill you!*
Arsenic spokespersons could cite studies (funded by the Arsenic Institute) demonstrating that cancer, heart disease, diabetes, endocrine disruptions, etc… are all complex issues that humans do not truly understand!
And certainly our health is influenced by MANY factors other than eating
bacon arsenic… So treat yourself!
Plus, you know that all of that advertising and lobbying is expensive; and the
bacon Arsenic Institute needs to stay profitable! So they are depending on YOU!
Also, their CEO needs to make a couple billion dollars; his private jet is expensive! So don’t forget to feed it to your kids too!
Besides! It is OUR choice to consume carcinogens! And everyone knows that CHOICE is an essential element of our FREEDOM!
This is AMERICA!!
Don’t tread on me!
Live free or die!
NOBODY TELLS US WHAT TO DO!
I mean, except that one time we let big tobacco give us cancer… and oh, that time with the pharmaceutical industry’s wonder drug– thalidomide! And also that unfortunate period with the lobotomies.
Also, can we discuss taking away the socially-acceptable use of barbiturates for the treatment of hating vacuuming, but leaving us with bacon.
Who made THAT call?
Can we get a re-vote?
But mostly, we can all totally relax and not worry that big corporations don’t care if we die/become addicts/get diabetes/cancer/heart disease!
I mean, would the
tobacco, bacon, arsenic industry REALLY sell us a product they KNEW CAUSED CANCER? Of course not!
Vintage ads are hilarious because look how stupid humans were!
But is it less hilarious if we consider the possibility that nothing has changed? Is it possible that our health is OF NO CONSEQUENCE AT ALL to anyone who has a financial stake in our continued consumption of toxic products?
Is it possible that we must be smarter than we were 50 years ago, and NOT FEED OURSELVES CARCINOGENS… or let our children run behind the DDT truck… which my father remembers being a FOOLPROOF WAY TO AVOID MOSQUITOES!
Does it matter that the only people benefiting from our consumption of toxins marketed as “food” are making billions of dollars?
The meat industry, the pharmaceutical industry, the medical industry, and the thousand-fold-increase of massively-profitable businesses that treat diet-related illness; their profit DEPENDS on humans making choices that are in direct opposition to good health.
Which leads us down the road to OUR per-capita tax burden: it’s huge.
Does it matter that the way we subsidize “cheap” food is actually insanely expensive when you factor in the subsidies we pay via tax dollars?
An enormous cost to me and you, that benefits no one other than corporations! We pay our taxes, and corporate lobbyists make sure those taxes are spent in a way that MOST benefits their corporation’s interest.
For every dollar spent on lobbying by all public-interest groups combined, large corporations spend $34. –How Corporate Lobbyists Conquered American Democracy: The Business of America is Lobbying
Plus! On top of the cost of subsidizing toxic food, there is also the cost of the health-consequences suffered by the segments of our population who MOST rely on this crappy food… their medical care is ALSO our tax burden!
The United States spends significantly more on health care than any other nation… more than twice the average of 29 other developed countries. Yet the average life expectancy in the United States is far below many other nations that spend less on health care each year. — CDC.gov
Who benefits from all this spending and subsidizing? Not me! Probably not you either.
But we do pay the COST: families experiencing cancer, heart disease, diabetes… heartbreak, desperation… frequently experiencing financial drain from expensive treatment, on top of the emotional gutting.
Can we reduce this emotional-cost by considering that the World Health Organization has found that 30% of cancer in America is caused by WHAT WE EAT… whoa!
Stop and think about that for a second!
That 30% is JUST cancer… if we also consider that heart disease, diabetes, endocrine disruptions, etc. are ALSO linked to what we eat, could we further divide that cost to families suffering illness, loss, and financial issues?
The words below are from the National Institutes of Health: OUR GOVERNMENT… not an organization run by woo-woo treehuggers like myself.
Cancer is a preventable disease that requires major lifestyle changes.
Only 5–10% of all cancer cases can be attributed to genetic defects, whereas the remaining 90–95% have their roots in the environment and lifestyle.
—National Institutes of Health
Everytime we put food in our mouth, we are voting for the kind of world we want, and how we want our families to experience that world.
Do we want a world where bacon is considered “food” rather than “toxin” because the meat industry lobbies like crazy and the pharmaceutical industry dances a little jig when yet another person takes blood pressure medication/cholesterol medication/cancer medication?
Does it matter that the intensive farming of animals is the single biggest cause of global warming? (again, that link is our government) The biggest cause of environmental destruction is not cars, not overpopulation, not countries with no environmental regulations… WHAT WE EAT.
In the U.S. alone, factory farming pollutes American waterways more than all other industries combined… Generating over 1.4 billion tons of animal waste annually. —National Institutes of Health
So essentially: human health and the environment future generations will inherit… are MOST IMPACTED BY HOW WE FEED OURSELVES.
*next time you hear someone wax rhapsodic about bacon, you are listening to the dulcet tones of advertising at work! if YOU are the waxer, you are the ad man’s dream!
Anyway… if you’re starting to suspect I am not totally ALL ABOUT BACON, you are correct.
If we can avoid contributing to factors that cause our illness, WHY WOULDN’T WE? We think of these diseases as beginning in mid-life… or late-life… but they begin as children. These are not conditions that come out of nowhere!
My father has had a heart attack… his father died of colon cancer (according to the American Institute for Cancer Research, HALF of colorectal cancer can be PREVENTED.)
Both of my parents have lost a younger sibling to Pancreatic cancer, a horrific and deadly killer… Both siblings were in their 50’s… Both left behind wonderful families; spouses, children, brothers and sisters… families who were utterly gutted.
Might these things have happened anyway? Sure… I know this better than anyone! Dad’s mom lived to be 93; she had all her wits about her AND her sense of humor. And she still had the “dripping can” on her stove– you know, to save the bacon grease to fry with.
And everyone said– wow! 93!
But might she have lived another five years if she ate better?
One year is a lot, when you love someone.
December 19, 2017 @ 10:56 am
This should be a nationally posted Public Service Announcement………………!! Read and heed.
December 19, 2017 @ 10:56 am
Love this Post!
We need a plant based food society, and the plants should all be local and organic!
Start with a veggie burger-a toasted sesame seed bun, lots of fresh lettuce, lots of red tomatoes, lots of sautéed onions, and slice of Good cheese (local small farm goat cheese!) ….who needs meat?
December 19, 2017 @ 10:58 am
Bacon is definitely not good. But even veggies and tofu could use a vent hood as they sizzle away in a stir fry. Alas I know you have gone the other route. So here’s to open windows and cross ventilation as you lead the revolution.
December 19, 2017 @ 6:13 pm
Not at all necessary to have a hood. Our architect suggested a commercial/grease grade exhaust fan: discreetly placed in the ceiling, painted to match said ceiling, very quiet and very efficient. Happy household all around!
December 20, 2017 @ 12:36 pm
That’s what the hood is doing – so you have one, it’s just in a different form.
December 19, 2017 @ 10:59 am
You are absolutely correct. What we eat is killing us. And still, I eat bacon. Not a lot, and not the industrial cured stuff–small lot, local, GMO free, uncured (no nitrites or nitrates) bacon. It’s the damn sugar that’s killing us. (I don’t eat that either.) And chairs. Behind sugar, chairs are deadly killers. The more time you spend sitting, the more likely you are to die. And while we’re ranting about what NOT to do, let’s take on the bigger issue of sedentary living and how deadly that is. Folks need to get up off their collective asses and get regular exercise. We’ll reserve the high-intensity-interval-training for the dedicated health nuts, but the rest of the world needs to do some regular aerobic exercise. And stop eating foods tainted with pesticide residues. (Those pesticides are killing the soils as well as the consumers.) Oh, Dear God, where to stop? Surely, bacon isn’t the only culprit.
December 19, 2017 @ 11:00 am
I love you! You are my smarter (soul)sister!
December 19, 2017 @ 11:01 am
Everything in moderation, except maybe arsenic and asbestos. Just think this all started because you don’t want a range hood?!? I prefer not to think of bad things during the Christmas season. I do my giving tree at church, write a check to the local food pantry, bake some cookies for the local bake sale, and drop coins in the kettle at every store I go. And then I let the sadness go and live in the moment. Blessed by a good husband, 3 children, 5 grandchildren, 1 black cat, a roof over my head and bacon in my belly. Life is good.
December 19, 2017 @ 5:22 pm
love love love (you and your post!)
December 19, 2017 @ 11:01 am
Oh yes all so true. Now go on to high fructose corn syrup. It’s deadly and I’m EVERYTHING #greed
December 19, 2017 @ 12:12 pm
Not just the hfcs, it’s SUGAR and all the processed carbs.
December 19, 2017 @ 11:02 am
Thank you, thank you and THANK YOU for this post!! Signed a vegetarian x10 years.
December 19, 2017 @ 11:03 am
Cannot give up bacon….boo! Great post though
December 19, 2017 @ 11:03 am
Wow! Thank you for shaking me up a bit. I needed that! I had heard tidbits of these facts but the way you put them all together made really re-think my eating habits. I’d like to think that I can make some serious changes.
December 19, 2017 @ 11:36 am
You CAN make changes! My husband and I went vegetarian six months ago for many of the reasons listed above plus cholesterol, and it has been surprisingly easy. We both feel great, I don’t have problems with bloat anymore, and I rarely miss eating meat. Sometimes I think a hamburger would be nice, and then I remember how full and uncomfortable they made me feel afterward, and I eat a nice veggie burger instead. 🙂
December 19, 2017 @ 11:09 am
I love you, Victoria, and I totally support changing the way America eats and particularly ending the horror that is the Meat Industry. It is cruel and inhumane and a disaster for our environment. But, I have to take exception to your attempt to make dialysis out to be the bad guy. Maybe you have never known someone who required it to stay alive. Or maybe you have but you judged that they only needed it because they ate copious amounts of bacon, which in your mind makes them not worthy? I don’t care for this judgement call. Maybe the industry that provides the machinery and care for patients with kidney failure is corrupt somehow and needs to be taken on? Fine. Maybe you think that health care should only be received by those who can afford to pay for it totally on their own? Or maybe, your point is that we need to do better with preventative care so that the burden of “aftercare” isn’t so massive? You have great ideas and great passion, but calling out dialysis as an “entitlement” and as an example of the evils of “socialized” medicine? You lost me there.
Victoria Elizabeth Barnes
December 19, 2017 @ 11:16 am
I think we *should* have socialized medicine… my point was intended to illustrate how (some people) screech about “entitlements” (a word that makes me roll my eyes) we are ALL entitled to health care. GOOD health care… instead, we have an INSANELY PROFITABLE industry that does NOT care for patients!! if we spent a tiny percent to EDUCATE people, they would DEMAND better care!! The links I included in that part are really interesting to understand how politics derails human health!
if you have time, this video:
December 19, 2017 @ 3:57 pm
Thank you. I agree that we need to get the word out so that we know what we are fighting. And I know that you are worked up about the injustices – I get the same way. I became defensive because my father-in-law was able to live an additional 15 years after kidney failure (as a result of damage to his kidneys by medicine that he was prescribed for another ailment.) He would have died without dialysis, and I’m sure that he would not have been able to afford the treatment if he had to pay for it himself out of pocket. So I’m all in on attacking corrupt corporate concerns who manipulate costs for their own gain. We need more oversight, not less, in my opinion. Keep up the good fight!
December 19, 2017 @ 5:19 pm
Great post Victoria! Additionally, when the government starting pushing “fat free” they were also supporting subsidies to corn growers and corn sugar (fructose) is now added in large amounts to fat free products so they taste good. Is it any wonder that a country that pushes fat free is now getting fatter and fatter! Fat is not the problem – it’s sugar.
December 19, 2017 @ 11:21 am
Agreed – and honestly, what’s wrong with socialized medicine? I’m all for single payer.
Of course, that doesn’t mean that we as Americans shouldn’t eat better, and I do believe that many parts of the American diet are to blame – but I not everyone who is on dialysis is eating cheetos and bacon.
December 19, 2017 @ 11:11 am
I adore you. This message is everything. Thank you for caring so much.
December 19, 2017 @ 11:11 am
Sing it, sister. High five to you. But then I’m a card carrying member of the no vent hood, no bacon, kitten huffing/smooching brigade.
December 19, 2017 @ 11:13 am
Thank you for at least clarifying that it was Type Two Diabetes that MAY have a connection to eating meat. I’ve had Type one for over 24 years – I was less than a year old – not even old enough to chew solid food when I was diagnosed. So it’s very hard for me to hear people talk about diet without seeing the full picture. That said, I consider Bacon a purely unnecessary thing due to the monstrous way they basically farm it from the deaths of so many helpless animals…
But do me a solid. Range or no range – and I’m a member of your revolution! 🙂 I love your work! Please. Please don’t generalize Diabetics. Merry Christmas.
January 10, 2018 @ 10:42 am
Thank you, Payton; Type 1 Diabetes is a terrible disease. I also get frustrated when Type 1 and Type 2 are lumped together. But Type 2 diabetics cannot be generalized, either. I was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes two years ago at age 36. I weigh 110 and have never been overweight. I’ve also been a vegetarian for 16 years; since age 12, for ethical reasons. I think that we should all eat better, for our own health, and for the health of our earth and all the other creatures on it. But it doesn’t always save us from serious health problems and long term, expensive care. Are many health problems diet- and lifestyle-related? Yes. But this is the reason that so many people are against socialized medicine: “It’s their fault! If they had lived a healthier life blah blah blah!” But there are a lot of people who do everything right in regards to their health, and still end up with cancer, heart disease, diabetes, etc.
December 19, 2017 @ 11:15 am
No matter what you are cooking, if you have a gas range you need a hood or downdraft. It’s usually required by code.
December 19, 2017 @ 6:18 pm
NO! NO! NO! Again I say, a commercial/grease grade exhaust fan can be discreetly placed in the ceiling, where it will quietly cope with whatever wafts from your cooking.
December 19, 2017 @ 11:15 am
I love you, but I’m not going to give up salami or bacon. I’m steering clear of arsenic and asbestos, and we’re all going to die anyway, so bring on the BACON!
December 19, 2017 @ 11:20 am
Yeah we’re all going to die but my kids will need to live on this planet for a while should I worry about them? or nah?
December 20, 2017 @ 12:38 pm
I’m not sure how me eating locally raised, organic, grass fed Bacon is going to kill the planet for your kids.
December 19, 2017 @ 11:16 am
Great comments, but have to remark on your inaccurate comment:
“Do you know that taxpayers foot the ENTIRE BILL for dialysis? Dialysis IS socialized medicine!”
Uh…no. My brother is on dialysis, and pays TONS for it. The supplies alone for his peritoneal dialysis run him thousands per month, and yes, that’s after Medicare picks up part of it, as any insurance coverage would. And don’t get me started on the cost of Medicare.
December 19, 2017 @ 11:17 am
Well, I love the idea of a vent hoodless kitchen, but we eat bacon (it’s not the bacon, its the nitrates and such involved in curing it. So, get UNcured bacon! YES, this is a thing!), sausage, homemade fried chicken, etc.
But in the concern of all things carcinogenic, we need to include air (filled with various toxins, depending on where you live), water (ditto, and in major cities, also filled with pharmaceuticals that water treatment plants can’t filter out), plants (what are they sprayed with? Where are they grown?), etc, etc. And my personal pet peeve (as a woman who has suffered great personal harm from it), hormonal birth control…a class 1 carcinogen that is a “sacred cow”, and therefore, not open to discussion as a health risk (and used as a band-aid instead of getting to the bottom of what is truly ailing we women!).
So, eat your bacon, cured or UNcured. Drink, eat, breathe, live your lives. Do your own personal best to make responsible choices, and leave the world, your town, your home, a cleaner, better, place than you found it (something my parents, blessedly, taught me).
Have a ventless, hoodless, kitchen (although there are very nice models with vents that raise and lower from the countertop, just behind the range top!). Have a kitchen with a glorious, huge, bright copper and brass range hood–complete with vent!
But be happy! 🙂 And Merry Christmas, Victoria (and Paul, and all the snuggly little fluffers! )🎄🎄🎄🎄
December 19, 2017 @ 11:19 am
Wow! Phenomenal post.
December 19, 2017 @ 11:21 am
I like how in the arsenic ad, the pretty girl is spoken of in the past tense.
I agree about the hood. When I moved into my apartment 10 years ago, I had them take the old, filthy hood away, and have had no problems since–I use little or no oil or frying, and the area around the stove is still clean.