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The Corny Truth About Your Hair

January 7, 2009

“If you’re standing in a field in Iowa, there’s an immense amount of food being grown, none of it edible.” Michael Pollan

Hummmm, drunken beef stew

Hummmm, drunken beef stew

If a normal American was to have their hair tested, they would discover that 2/3rds of it is made up of corn. What? I know, sounds weird but it is true. Now this is not sweet corn that we eat off the cob on sunny days, but products born from a genetically modified corn. We can’t even ingest this product till it has been processed to kingdom come and turned into corn syrup, corn oil, or corn fed animal products. In fact, it is estimated that the average American consumes 79 pounds of corn syrup a year, which is mostly ingested through soft drinks that have now replaced milk for most teenagers. It is interesting to note that the startling rise in diabetes and obesity has perfectly mirrored the rise in consumption of corn syrup.

Corn is king in American agriculture where it is grown in greater quantities and receives more government subsidies than any other crop. This is the reason that fast food is so cheap, it is primarily made up of corn based foods. So basically, our government is subsidizing obesity and diabetes. Strange huh?

I have a challenge for you. Try to go one week without any corn based foods in your diet. I’ll do it with you.

It isn’t easy but it can be done. The primary way to eliminate corn from your diet is to stop eating all junk and processed foods. Eat as many whole foods as possible. Anytime you pick up a can, box or bag of food you can be guaranteed that there is corn products in them. Next, stop eating all grain fed meat. Replace it with grass fed animals, which are largely organically and humanely raised anyway. Grain fed meats are higher in saturated fats, antibiotics and muscle building hormones that are very, very bad for you and your heart. There are quite a few folks here locally that you can buy grass feed meats from.

Lance Waldron and Tammi Lesh’s grass fed meats, 503-322-2226

Brian Tallman and Sage Waldron, 503-368-5978
OK Ranch, Doug Lee, 503-322-3546

I also suggest watching the movie, “King Corn.” It is a great documentary about 2 twenty something men finding out why their hair is loaded with corn.

Stew is so warming this time of year. This recipe is my very favorite recipe, which I use either venison or grass fed beef. This recipe is a slow cooker version, but you can cook it just as easily on your stove top. If you can’t find brown ale use a dark, strong beer. Here’s to no more corn in your hair!

Drunken Beef Stew

2 tablespoons of canola oil, divided

2 pounds of bottom round, or a good stew meat,

trimmed of all fat and cut into 1 inch pieces

1 pound of mushrooms, white or cremini, sliced

3 tablespoons of flour

2 cups of brown ale

4 -5 large carrots cut into 1 inch pieces

1 or 2 fingerling potatoes cut into 1 inch pieces

1 large onion, chopped

2-3 cloves of garlic, chopped

1 ½ tablespoons of Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon of chopped fresh rosemary

1 teaspoon of dried thyme

1 teaspoon caraway seeds

1 teaspoon of salt

A few cranks of black pepper

1 bay leaf

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium heat, and add half the meat. Brown on all sides turning frequently, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a 6 quart slow cooker. Cook the second half of the meat in the remaining tablespoon of oil till brown on all sides and add to the party going on in the slow cooker.

Return the skillet to medium heat and add the mushrooms and onions and sauté till they get fragrant and translucent, about 5 – 7 minutes. Sprinkle flour over the veggies and cook undisturbed for 2 slow breaths or so, then stir and cook for about 5 more breaths. Now the fun part, take a swig of the beer, just to make sure it is the right brand, then add to the mushroom mixture. Bring to a boil while whisking constantly to keep from foaming too much, for about more 3 minutes, till it is beginning to thicken and make you drool. Transfer to the party mix in the slow cooker. Add the rest of the ingredients to the drunken slow cooker and mix it up. Put the lid on and cook on low for 8 hours, while you chase children and dreams. (Discard the bay leaf before eating.) Happy New Years!

Nutritional Info if divided into 8 servings; 300 calories, 10 grams of fat, 3 grams of fiber

5 Comments leave one →
  1. January 10, 2009 10:31 pm

    how interesting! i’ve never even thought about this, but i will start paying attention. is there a website that gives the “box names” for different types of corn by products?

    btw, this stew looks DELICIOUS!

  2. January 11, 2009 10:33 am

    Wow, really interesting statistics on corn. I’ve been researching the link between diet and obesity/diabetes and I’m trying to eat low GI foods. I’m neither obese nor diabetic, but I’m trying to avoid blood sugar spikes and insulin lows to regulate my energy levels, mood and clarity of thinking. I love corn, polenta, cornbread, corn tortillas. But I was shocked when I found out the glycemic index of corn – it’s so high. And so, I imagine corn syrup has an incredibly high GI too, even for a sugar. With the amount of soda consumed it’s no wonder obesity and diabetes are as pervasive as they are.

  3. January 15, 2009 9:26 pm

    Yikes, never knew that about the corn. Thankfully, I’ve cut a lot of that stuff out of my diet, but its still startling.
    As for the stew, that just sounds awesome.

  4. BVG permalink
    January 16, 2009 9:59 pm

    If you were intrigued by that statistic, I highly recommend the documentary “King Corn” which ran on PBS last year.


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