With all this news about Los Angeles’ fast food restaurant zoning, I can’t help but think about the thin line between those with healthy eating habits and those with an unhealthy obsession with eating healthy: Orthorexics

*Orthorexia – From the greekortho” (right and correct) and “exia” (appetite) . American physician Steven Bratman first proposed the term in 1996 and while it is not yet an eating disorder recognized by DSM but, all of this according to Michael Pollan in In Defense of Food, an academic investigation is underway.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a big fan of the fast food industry (thanks to Fast Food Nation, among others), I’m just wondering if this is the best approach to help control the obesity epidemic or if the LA City Council members are a little high on protein and perfection.

Of course the bigger hope is, like in Concord, Massachusetts a few years back, that such restrictions will boost traffic and sales at local grocers, diminish truancy, decrease pollution and improve these communities but I guess, well, I can’t help but picture Britney Spears chaining herself to the local Sonic (I know I know, “leave Britney alone”). What I am trying to say is, obesity is a symptom of a much larger problem: the industrialization of food gone wild. Another symptom on the opposite end of the spectrum: famine and starvation in other parts of the world.

Oh Lord… am I an orthorexic?

Eco-cred to Metropolitan Gallery

I am hoping to come up with a word for individuals who exhibit environmentally friendly practices in both their home and personal lives. David Wase, owner and president of Metropolitan Gallery (formerly Claren Court Studio) in nearby Arlington, VA is one of those people. David recently sent me the press release below and given my affinity for fine art and the careful preservation of it through fine framing, I couldn’t be happier to read the news. Outside of work, Wase, his wife, Susan, and their two dogs (CJ and Teddy) grow all their own veggies. If you have driven around the Arlington area, you will know that this is no small feat: Land is hard to come by. The Wase’s dedicate the majority of their front and back yard to vegetable, fruit, herb and native gardening. I love hearing about folks like this!

Framing and Planet Friendly Resource Use At Metropolitan Gallery in Arlington, VA:
We now have eco-friendly picture frames, made from renewable-resource bamboo. This is a significant development since its use can reduce the pressure on rain-forest environments and South American, Phillipine and other de-forestation susceptible locales. Providing low carbon impact, these frames are finished in natural stains; (they are NOT available in gold or silver or other metallics which require use ot toxic metals and environmentally-unfriendly chemicals in their finishes).

We are trying to source recycled mat board material also, but our primary concern is preservation and safety of all materials used in our framing. Currrently our matting material is made either from purified wood-pulp materials or cotton fiber which is annually renewable. To achieve maximum safety and preservation we have selected proprietary-technology Artcare products made by Nielsen-Bainbridge Corp, a leader in museum preservation technology.

Artcare provides matting and mounting products that are the next generation in museum-quality conservation. They are so advanced, they redefine the field. For the first time in history, conservation framing has moved from the passive protection of the past— which, simply, does no harm—to the active protection of the future: Artcare proactively traps and neutralizes pollutants and acid by-products that damage’ artwork. The patented technology is engineered into the very fibers of Artcare products, and offers a level of conservation for treasured artwork beyond any other mounting or matting product.

Metropolitan Gallery/Claren Court Studio
Arlington, VA

Eric Jacobsen (Did I mention Metro sells awesome original oils?)


Eat Well

Last weekend, my sister and I were talking about the phenomenon of convenience – how we, as American consumers, are willing to pay extra for prepared or processed foods – because for many of us, that convenience has become the norm and the other huge piece is: it seems to be the most affordable way to eat. (The conversation came about as I was spouting out facts I’ve learned from the first few chapters of Paul Roberts, “The End of Food.” )

So what’s the solution? Is there a convenient way to eat local and organic produce and meat? Well, when I talked to the extraordinarily eco-conscious Eli Halliwell, CEO of Jurilique – a cosmetic company using only natural ingredients grown on a biodynamic farm in Australia, he gave me some suggestions and insight into Coops, Farmers Markets and most of all: Sustainability. I did a little research and it turns out there is a pretty convenient way to locate and endorse an eco-friendly farm near you. It’s as easy as… typing in your zip below:

A little bit about me…

…and why I am blogging.

I’m interested in everything and I find that the best way to learn is to research and study a subject so much that you are comfortable writing about it, and therefore teaching it to others. Right now, I’d say I’m just getting started. Here are some links to writing I’ve done so far:






I guess I’m not surprised…

As some/most of you know, I have become increasingly interested in “agri-business,” and how the industrialization of food has affected what, how, when, where and why we eat. The chart below, from yesterday’s NY Times, compares the average food intake in 1970 versus 2006. I was surprised to see the red meat consumption has declined a quarter of a percentage. Perhaps the most startling increase however, is the fats. Wowzers.