The Future of Bacon

February 1st, 2006
by Alfonso Ebanks

[private] v4-2-Our Islands In these times that we now live nearly everything we eat (except for some vegetables) is supposed to have some kind of ill effects on the human body. Of all the evil foods that exist I’m sure that the most infamous is bacon and when I say bacon I’m not referring to turkey and other such meats that have the word bacon written on the package for marketing purposes. I’m talking about the one and only real and true bacon that comes from the belly of the hog.

The hog is without a doubt the most scorned animal in the world. Mostly all of the major religions forbid the eating and even the touching of its flesh. With only a very minor exception all Christians eat pork so when the Christian Spaniards came to this part of the world in the fifteenth century the second thing that landed on American soil were pigs. The first thing was the cross.

Maybe that is why it is said that the only pig product that is not used in Latin America is the squeal that the pig produces when it is conked in the head just before its throat is cut. Of all the pork products probably the best known are ham and bacon, with bacon taking first place when it comes to its contents of fats containing the health altering sterol: cholesterol.

Before we go any further let us try to understand a little bit of what is known about cholesterol which by the way is not very much. I personally think that cholesterol is getting a bad rap because cholesterol plays a very important role in the human body. It is used to protect cell membranes, to protect nerve fibers and along with other sterols in the skin it produces vitamin D when exposed to the ultra violet rays of the sun, it even produces some hormones.

This sterol is so important in our bodies that the body will synthesize it from cholesterol-free substances and this synthesis will take place whether or not our diet includes foods high in fat. This synthesized cholesterol is probably produced in the liver and the amount varies from family to family so the doctors might refer to it as being a matter of genetics. Cholesterol has always been a part of the make up of animal fat and fats are the most concentrated form of the energy-producing nutrients. Still, many scientists and doctors will tell you that we just don’t need cholesterol in our diet.

The eating of meat is credited with the reason for the development of the big brain that made our species smarter than the competition. Maybe it is for this reason that we all have this unexplained craving for fatty foods and maybe that’s the reason that we find bacon so delicious. According to the researchers, cholesterol comes in two types; there is the good (HDL) and the bad (LDL), but our bodies store the wrong kind and in the wrong places.

The processes that control our bodily functions are always at work setting aside the fats and carbohydrates that are not immediately needed, getting the body ready for the day when food is not available. So you see our problem is not all that cholesterol we get from the bacon we eat, our real problem is our own body’s inability to deal with all these easy times and the abundance of food that has come upon us during the last half-century or so.

If the human race does not become extinct, somewhere in the far away future the body will evolve mechanisms to handle excesses of all kinds and maybe it will store our not-immediately-needed fats in our tails like the beaver does, when this happens the future of bacon will be secured for all eternity. [/private]

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