Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Tuesday Megalinks

Sweet baby Jane, there are a lot of links today. I’m going easy on the descriptors, because we only have two months left of summer. Nonetheless, I’m sure you’ll enjoy bogus BMIs, Southerners on the hot seat, and more Meryl than you can handle.

344 Pounds: 10 Reasons Why Losing Weight is Hard
Great piece by Tyler on why dropping poundage is so difficult. What I like is that it could be called “10 Reasons Why Keeping Weight Off is Hard” without changing any of the content.

Casual Kitchen: If it's So Cheap to Cook at Home, Then Why is My Grocery Bill So Huge?
Ooo … I like that Dan included an abstract. It reads, “This article discusses why we often spend much more money than we expect to in the grocery store, and it offers several solutions--including one counterintuitive idea that could help you save half off your grocery bill.” Makes my job easy.

Chow: Cooking with Summer Ingredients
Chow’s seasonal roundup goes heavy on the berries, peppers, squash, and stone fruits. With recipes.

Chow: Table Manners
Massive comp of Helena Echlin’s occasionally controversial advice column, in which she waxes poetic on everything from dining alone to applying lipstick at the table. Entertaining and informational. Like Electric Company.

Consumerist: Grocery Shrink Ray is Reversed, Called a Bonus
Mission knocked their average-sized tortilla package from ten wraps to eight a few months ago. Now, they’re adding the other two back and calling it a Very Special Bonus. Lame.

Consumerist: How I Lost 100.4 Pounds in 6 Months
Remember Tyler from the first link? Losing weight was tough, but he prevailed. Here’s how.

Grist: Not Much Convenience in “Convenience Foods”
Holy moly, this is fascinating. A UCLA study found that, “Surprisingly, dinner didn’t get on the table any faster in homes that favored convenience foods [over freshly-prepared “real foods”]. Meals took an average of 52 minutes in total time to prepare.” Ha! Take that, Swanson! (Thanks to Serious Eats for the link.)

The Kitchn: 5 Tips to Help You Cook at Home While Moving
As someone who’s lived in seven apartments in nine years, I appreciate this post.

The Kitchn: What Do You Eat When You Come Back From Vacation?
As someone who spent the weekend at a wedding in Western New York, and has eaten nothing but easily-boiled starch since then, I appreciate this post.

Ladies Home Journal: Ladies Who Lunch – Talking About Food, Life, and Love with Amy Adams and Meryl Streep
Multiple-page interview with the stars of Julie and Julia. And I don’t know about you guys, but I find Meryl Streep DELIGHTFUL in interviews. She’s equal parts genius and goofball. (Thanks to Serious Eats for the link.)

Money Saving Mom: Making short-term sacrifices in order to achieve long-term goals
One word: priorities. The woman’s paying for a house in cash. If that means weekly chicken pizzas, so be it.

My Open Wallet: Money Doesn’t Motivate People to Lose Weight?
Er, $100 at the end of the year wouldn’t motivate me to lose weight, either, unless I intended to already. I’m thinking this study is fundamentally flawed.

New York Times: The Question of Leftovers, Ever Fresh
Quick and funny piece on the cultural mores surrounding next-day chicken. Write this down: if you borrow Patti LaBelle’s Tupperware, remember to return it. She gets mad.

New Yorker: XXXL - Why Are We So Fat?
Five books on the biggening of Americans, five different viewpoints. One author blames evolution. Another blames money. The third blames portion control. The last two say it’s spawned a new field, “Fat Studies,” and it’s taking a toll all over the world. (Note obligatory unrelated cartoon. Oh New Yorker, you’re so wry.)

NPR: Top Ten Reasons Why the BMI is Bogus
Quick list weaves reasoned, well-positioned arguments with hilarious mini-rants like, “That’s total nonsense.” Good times.

The Oregonian: What Price is Right?
Oh, this is so neat: “We did an apples-to-apples comparison of seasonal produce, gleaned from four sources in late June. We started with my weekly produce box from a Willamette Valley farm share (Community Supported Agriculture, or CSA, subscription). The CSA box gave us a blueprint for a seasonal shopping list. We weighed and measured it all, then picked up the same stuff, or as close as we could get, at the Wednesday Portland Farmers Market, at a discount grocer (WinCo Foods) and the local chain New Seasons Markets.” Unsurprisingly, WinCo is the cheapest option, but when other factors are figured it, it’s far from the clear winner.

Reuters: USDA to oversee school snack food - Senate ag chair
“The U.S. Agriculture Department would be given the power to regulate all food sold in schools -- including vending machine snacks -- when Congress renews child nutrition programs.” This could mean more regulations for school lunch offerings (good) or the usual USDA inaction we’ve come to know and love (bad). Time will tell.

Seattle Times: Fiber Bulking Up in Popularity
Apparently, what’s good for your GI system is just as beneficial for your heart. Stock up on flax seed, citizens.

Seattle Times: Just how friendly are those probiotics in your food?
Guess what?!? No one really knows anything about probiotics, much less how they assist any diet. Buyer be warned.

Serious Eats: Money Saving Tips on Food
Everything you ever wanted to know, in 66 convenient comments.

Slashfood: What Can I Get You Folks? - Free Refills
Soda refills cost restaurants time and money, because servers are expected to return to tables multiple times for what becomes less and less profit. Some places are doing away with them entirely. The commenters aren’t pleased.

Time: How to Eat Well on $50 a Week – They’re Doing it. Could You?
Yes. But it’s neat reading about these bloggers’ experiences.

Time: Why Are Southerners So Fat?
Er … the title’s blunt, but the sentiment has merit. Mississippi’s won the obesity crown five years running, and several other Southern states aren’t far behind. Claire Suddath examines why. (Essentially: money, culture, weather, exercise, Paula Deen recipes.)

Zen Habits: The Healthy and Fit Algorithm
Remember that first link? And the 5th one? They were about the 334-lb gentleman who dropped 30% of his body weight in half a year. This is a good guide for how to do that.

(Photos courtesy of Real Simple, Eat Me Daily, and Rantings of a Creole Princess.)

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