Mr. Salatin Goes To Washington, Urban Farming, And More

Yes, it’s that time of the week again. I’ve managed to collect five rather fascinating reads. (At least they piqued my interest!) Maybe you’ll like them too…

Did you know that in 1969, 40.7% of all American children walked to school. Currently, approximately 12.9% of all American children walk to school, and in some areas as few as 5% of children walk to school. Why do I care? Because this generation of kids is the most obese one yet. A lot of that has to do with the Standard American Diet, but a great deal of that has to do with just how sedentary this generation is. A study recently released by the American Academy of Pediatrics made recommendations for how we can change our children’s “built environment” to encourage more outdoor activity. Their main premise? Poorly planned suburban sprawl has made our lives unwalkable. Parks, schools, and shops are “too far away” or aren’t safely accessible by pedestrians.

Joel Salatin, lunatic farmer extraordinaire, visited Washington D.C. yesterday and shares a first hand account of his reception (or lack thereof) in the halls of congress.

Richard Nikoley of Free The Animal shared an interesting take on country biscuits & gravy that caught my eye. He somehow managed to make something that looked appetizing without using any grains, instead relying heavily on the coconut flour, eggs, bacon grease, sausage, and even coconut milk. Given how easy it is to fall into breakfast ruts, I thought you guys might want to check out his pics and get a little inspired. (Oh, and did you catch that this is a low-carb, gluten-free breakfast idea?)

The New York Times featured a piece on the growing number of urban rooftop gardens. They’re popping up on the roofs of schools, churches, and apartment buildings in cities across the nation. Seems like these days, everyone wants to be a farmer, and they’re not going to let city life get in the way.

And for all you fellow nutrition geeks, Stephen Guyenet of Whole Health Source published a great little summary of the Lyon Diet Heart Study which demonstrated the link between heart health and eating a diet low in Omega 6 linoleic acids. What’s really interesting about this study is that both groups (the control & the special diet) ate diets rich in Omega 3s. The only real nutritional difference between the two groups was that one group (the group with fewer resulting heart problems) also decreased their Omega 6 intake to less than 4% of their total caloric intake. The point? As Stephen pointed out in his follow up post on the implications of the Lyon Diet Heart Study:

The way to preserve the essential elements of the Mediterranean diet without becoming an ascetic is to eat fats that are low in omega-6, and find a modest source of omega-3. That means eating full-fat dairy if you tolerate it, fatty meat if you enjoy it, organs, seafood, olive oil in moderation, coconut oil, butter, lard, and tallow. Along with a diet that is dominated by real, homemade food rather than processed food.

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I am a passionate advocate for REAL FOOD -- food that's sustainable, organic, local, and traditionally-prepared according to the wisdom of our ancestors. I'm also an author and a nutrition educator. I enjoy playing in the rain, a good bottle of Caol Ila scotch, curling up with a page-turning book, sunbathing on my hammock, and watching my three children explore their world.
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4 Responses to Mr. Salatin Goes To Washington, Urban Farming, And More
  1. Ed Bruske
    June 18, 2009 | 12:50 pm

    Kristen, all this time and I had no idea Joel Salatin was publishing a blog. Duh. Thanks for that link. Tons of good info there.

    Ed Bruske

  2. KristenM
    June 18, 2009 | 1:32 pm

    Ed — The blog is managed by the Polyface team. Joel occasionally uses it as a sounding board for various things — the farm newsletter, entries like today’s. It has a lot of tasty, down-home recipes, too, usually posted by Joel’s daughter-in-law.

  3. Cathy Payne
    June 19, 2009 | 5:20 am

    Loved the article about Salatin’s trip to Washington. How sad that nobody wanted to listen to him.

    Cathy Payne

  4. Walter Jeffries
    June 19, 2009 | 2:54 pm

    Good stuff. If we can’t bring the people back to the land, bring the land to the people. City gardens will de-desertify the cities which always seem like such wastelands to me. I would love to see cities as verdant green growing plants to filter the air, water and produce good food for the people. This would be progress.

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Who Am I?

My name is Kristen Michaelis. I'm a nutrition educator, author, and mother of three. I adore hats, happy skirts, horizons full of storm clouds, the full-bodied feel of wind as I ride motorcylces, reading in my hammock, and a hearty shot of Caol Ila scotch. I'm also a rebel with a cause.
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