Skeeter Bait

One of my resolutions for the new year is to try and cut back on the amount of sugar (especially the dastardly high-fructose corn syrup) I ingest. I have a wicked sweeth tooth, well-honed over many years of use, and cutting back is hard. I can see why nutritionists state that more Americans are addicted to sugar than anything else.

I was paging through my copy of “Nourishing Tradtions” while waiting for my German-style shredded red cabbage dish to cook and ran across an interesting little anecdote on page 416. The mosquito is the unoffical state bird of Minnesota; we are awash with the little bastards in the summertime despite our best efforts to eradicate them. Apparently skeeters are attracted to the sugar in our bloodstreams, so those folks who slam down lots of sugar pop, sweets, etc, are more likely to smell like dinner.

The book states that once you’re ‘off sugar’ for a year or more, you should be able to notice a distinct difference in how often you are attacked by mosquitos compared to your over-sugared peers. It’ll take me a while to get there, but I’ll be curious to see if that’s the case or not. Regardless of how much our climate changes, I’m guessing the mosquitos will still be here.

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9 Responses to Skeeter Bait

  1. Dan says:

    First off, thanks for the directing me to Nourishing Traditions in your previous posts. I went to the local natural foods grocer where the owner is a dietician and he had the book in stock and he also recommended the book to me, so I bought it yesterday. Looks like good stuff from what little I’ve read so far. Regarding mosquitos, I’ve also heard that if you eat garlic it alters your body’s PH enough to repel those flying leeches. I read people will also spray or smear garlic over their exposed flesh while outdoors. Ugh. I’ll stick to eating it instead.

  2. Bart says:

    You’re welcome! The book is packed with information *and* recipes, both of which I find both interesting and useful.

    I eat a decent amount of garlic, yet I still am skeeter bait quite often. I’m chalking it up to the sugar. As I stated in the post, I’m trying to cut donw on refined sugars as much as possible. It’s hard, though, with the subsidized soda at the office tempting my resolve daily. I’m not addicted to alcohol, but there are some days I literally feel the Coke machine calling me. Scary…

  3. Dan says:

    Reading Nourishing Traditions reminds me a lot of my aunt and uncle’s diet. They are elderly now, but use to make sauerkraut, homemade wine (their dandelion wine was incredible) and ate a hardy diet, not considered to be healthy by today’s standards, but made everything from scratch with hardly any processed foods. They are pushing 90 and don’t have any major health problems. There’s something to be said about that.

    I think you have to eat enough garlic so that it seeps out your pores to make it work. I think your breath and body odor would knock people over if you kept up that regimen throughout summer.

    Yep, it’s hard to get the high fructose corn syrup/refinded sugar monkey off your back. It’s claws are dug into many people’s diets. They just raised the price of Coke at vendo-land this year at my work and it seems to help some to cut back. Good luck with that.

  4. Bart says:

    The thing that got me interested in Nourishing Traditions and the Weston A Price Foundation was the research that backed up the claims. People ate a lot more eggs, lard, fats, etc, 100 years ago, yet diabetes, cancer and heart attacks (I think) were much less common. We eat more low-fat, low-sugar, highly-processed food than ever before, yet obesity and the above-listed diseases are running rampant throughout society. What gives?

    Eating less-processed foods was a part of why people were healthier, I think. They also did more manual labor (less desk jockeys for sure), and had a less-rich diet. Big hunks of meat weren’t on most people’s dinner plates every night 100 years ago… at least not like today.

  5. PeakEngineer says:

    That sounds like an interesting experiment. We’ve been adjusting to shopping for foods without the high fructose corn syrup (my God…it’s everywhere!!) and skeeter season is just around the corner down here in Florida. Let’s dance, bugs…

  6. Bart says:

    High fructose corn syrup, trans fats, hydrogenated oils… all stuff I’m trying to cut back on. And you’re right, PE, that stuff is everywhere.

    My wife’s lite english muffins (the least sweet bread I can think of) has HFCS in it.

  7. Dan says:

    A little off topic, but I wanted to share a tidbit that my dietician friend told me. When looking for wheat bread at the store, make sure the ingredients list whole wheat flour and not just wheat flour. Apparently bread makers where getting a bad rap in light of people getting more educated on whole foods and now instead of listing white flour in their ingredients they say wheat flour. Look at wheat bread ingredients the next time you’re at the store and you probably won’t find white flour listed. Sneaky. That’s why it’s better to make your own as you can control the ingredients.

  8. Bart says:

    Very sneaky indeed. Thanks for the tip!

  9. Dan says:

    I forgot to expand my comment above to say that the wheat flour trick doesn’t just pertain to bread and has been adopted by most processed food makers. I assume the bread makers were the first to do it and others followed suit. I’ve also noticed that some breads list whole wheat flour as the first ingredient and the next ingredient will be wheat flour, usually bleached wheat flour. Read those labels carefully folks!

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