Is the New York Times right or wrong? Today's health section features an article called “Well: The 11 Best Foods You Aren’t Eating.” Best foods I'm not eating? Really? I doubt it. You see similar articles in women’s health and fitness magazines. The titles form questions that leap off the cover, zooming in on my neurotic tendencies, and appealing to my need for a convenient universal remedy. Are you eating the top five power foods that prevent cancer? As I flip to page 22, I am thinking please, let onion dip be number five. Putting aside the wish list--if you have read one of these articles, then, really, you have read them all.
Magazine writers have penned these cure-all food articles 100 different ways. I imagine that editors get extra points for adding a new twist and writing captivating titles. I already know the foods that show up regularly on these lists: almonds, blueberries, garlic, salmon, and whole grains, among a few other regulars. Right, I got it. Tell me something new. Gorgonzola cures bad posture. Now there is a title that commands attention.
I almost didn’t click on the NYT article, and probably wouldn’t have, except that it is currently on “the most emailed list,” and, yes, the title got me. 11 best foods I’m not eating? It was a throw down. And it worked. I clicked on the article expecting to find that I was, in fact, already eating all 11 items. Turns out I’m not eating any of them.
1. Beets – Not a fan.
2. Cabbage – Maybe once in the past five years. Mixed with a lot of butter, of course.
3. Swiss chard – Embarrassingly, I’ve never tried swiss chard. It sure looks pretty.
4. Cinnamon – Okay, I’ve had cinnamon.
5. Pomegranate juice – Do pomtinis count?
6. Dried plums – Never. Aren’t these prunes? Some how, the re-branding works in making them appealing.
7. Pumpkin seeds – Not since my ninth Halloween.
8. Sardines – No. Never. Ever.
9. Turmeric – This seems easy enough.
10. Frozen blueberries – Frozen?
11. Canned pumpkin – Too sweet.
Right on New York Times! This list surprised me. And I’m easily influenced. I will add numbers 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 9, and 10 to my shopping list and head to the bar for a pomtini to lower my blood pressure.