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Author Topic: Groceries  (Read 68582 times)
anakin
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« Reply #120 on: April 16, 2012, 1:14:31 PM »

The French and Italians don't seem to have this problem.  Nor are they self-diagnosing gluten intolerance, latose intolerance, peanut allergies and other assorted food intolerance in record numbers.   Data on this??  I don't got it.  So if I'm wrong, I'm sure somebody will let me know.


My advisees who have studied abroad with celiac disease report that the French are ignoring it and the Italians, Germans, English and others aren't hysterical or self-diagosing because it's been widely-enough diagnosed and accepted for years as a medical condition -- the gluten-free bread in Italy is apparently sold in pharmacies; wheat-rationing during the war led to a much earlier awareness and acceptance in Europe than in the US. There's also no need for marketing campaigns to raise awareness because many restaurants in Italy just have gluten-free pasta on hand at all times and don't make food from bags sent out by the National Chain Restaurant Headquarters so they actually know what's in their dishes.  The French, one of my advisees snidely reported, "just can't live without having a damned baguette in their hands at all times. My host brother taught me many creative ways of telling them not to put their toxic sticks near my food."



In fairness, there are ways in which the EU is far more attentive to food allergies, too. I have a truly life-threatening allergy to mustard, which has gained increasing recognition as an allergen in recent years in both the EU and the US. Like a lot of others with this allergy (and is typical with true allergies in general), I spent many years suffering from gradually increasing symptoms. Now, though, after repeated exposures through the years, I go straight into anaphylaxis, with the swollen throat and everything. In the EU, mustard MUST be identified on all food labels, just as wheat, nuts, and dairy are in the US. Here, however, mustard is very often subsumed under the category of "spices" on food labels. So, yeah--I can't ever eat anything that just says "spices" on the label, unless I want an opportunity to check out whether my Epi-pen is still functioning correctly and to take a quick trip to the ER. Life would be far easier for me in the EU.

I have 4 of the big 7: Wheat, Dairy, Fish, Shellfish. I can tolerate small amount of the first two (in the sense that cross contamination won't kill me, but I will be uncomfortable for a day or two), but the other two will kill me. Even the smell of seafood can be problematic. So at the mandatory canape event this week, everything had fish on it. I was sick for two days, bit I didn't need my epi-pen. The catering staff looked befuddled, it's just [tuna/salmon/caviar]. How could that be a problem?

Mustard...interesting. I hadn't heard of it, but it makes sense to this biologist because, well, mustard is a plant defense. (So are tannins, as in teas, as well as most things we use as spices.)

I was allergic to shellfish (confirmed with a scratch test) and discovered this one memorable night out with a friend at a local four-star eatery in Tundra City. It was just after we had graduated from college, and we were "splurging" on a $35 four-course price fixe. I'd had infrequent shellfish growing up, and had just started to appreciate my grandmother's soft-shell crab cakes - never a problem. There I was at dinner with the delicious shrimp bisque - and my throat closed up. Interestingly, since I had my mini-SCT in 2007, I am no longer allergic to shrimp, and have had some amazing chocolate-chili velvet shrimp on two occasions. It was delicious, but I'm so accustomed to being scared to death of them that it took me several minutes of mindful self-talk NOT to freak out at the shrimp in my mouth and slow my pounding heart. Dunno if I'm ever going to be able fully to enjoy them, but it's nice not to worry I'm going to die if I do eat them.

Even if I stopped being allergic tomorrow, the ER trips are enough to put me off of seafood for life. You are much braver than I am.

Can't say I get a whole lot of enjoyment out of fish etc. either.
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melba_frilkins
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« Reply #121 on: April 17, 2012, 2:21:12 AM »

Please add to my grocery receipts for this month: $255 for 3 piglets. Currently they are very cute. Not so much in 6 months.
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secundem_artem
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« Reply #122 on: April 17, 2012, 9:00:16 AM »

Please add to my grocery receipts for this month: $255 for 3 piglets. Currently they are very cute. Not so much in 6 months.

Maybe not but in 6 months, they will be delicious!
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vlachk
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« Reply #123 on: May 23, 2012, 2:10:36 PM »

I hope you don't mind me jumping in here.

I'd like to say that we spend roughly $900 a month on groceries for 2 adults, a 2 year old, and a 3 year old. We buy our produce and meat from a farmer's market and the rest from a grocery store or (gasp) Costco.

Also, our son has an anaphylactic peanut allergy which we discovered by giving him (organic) peanut butter. He swelled up so much his eyes were swollen shut. This has significantly increased our food bill because we are limited with what we can buy. Annoyingly, we cannot (for instance) buy the nice wood-oven bread from the market but have to buy commercial breads (or bake it ourselves, which we often do).

Before we had the peanut thing I had thought it tended to affect people with overly sterile houses. That's definitely not a problem for us. The abundance of self-diagnosed "allergies" (which should probably be called sensitivities or intolerances) definitely makes life tricky for us.
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blackadder
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« Reply #124 on: May 23, 2012, 4:20:17 PM »

That's quite a bit but we are very close to $900 too because....
Mr. Blackadder and I are competative powerlifters so that means protein and lots of it. Powder supplements are fine but still expensive. After his chemotherapy treatments last year red meat, lamb, and a very small selection of fishes are palatible.

Added to this is keeping kosher. So "the other white meat" is out. Kosher meat = chaCHING! $$$$$

Beans...yeah, I can only tolerate so many meals with beans.

Thank God for coupons!
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prytania3
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« Reply #125 on: May 23, 2012, 4:49:26 PM »

We spend so much money on berries: blueberries, raspberries, blackberries.

They are expensive, and no matter how many I buy, they're gone the next day.
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viviv
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« Reply #126 on: May 23, 2012, 10:19:59 PM »

2 young adults.
We spent $800-900 when we were both graduate students living in a southern college town with relatively low cost of living.
Now it is only higher since we moved to more expensive places.
We buy tons of fresh produce and mainly organic diary, meat, chicken and raw seafood. We like to cook nutritious meals every day. We don't eat much processed stuff, we like to cook raw foods and make homemade things from scratch.
Quality of food is high priority for us when it comes to standard of living. If I haven't had fresh fruit and vegetables, I don't feel good about my day.
Cooking is very relaxing for us, we like to cook together. Somehow realizing that we are taking care of our body and health is really satisfying. Plus, cooking produces end result and positive reinforcement instantly, as compared to, say writing a paper or starting a new project, hehe... 
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viviv
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« Reply #127 on: May 23, 2012, 10:21:34 PM »

We spend so much money on berries: blueberries, raspberries, blackberries.

They are expensive, and no matter how many I buy, they're gone the next day.

Haha, we do the same. Berries are the best!! Totally worth the price!~
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scampster
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« Reply #128 on: May 24, 2012, 6:03:31 AM »

We spend so much money on berries: blueberries, raspberries, blackberries.

They are expensive, and no matter how many I buy, they're gone the next day.

Haha, we do the same. Berries are the best!! Totally worth the price!~

And those cartons conveniently are serving size!
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bookishone
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« Reply #129 on: May 24, 2012, 11:14:37 AM »

We spend so much money on berries: blueberries, raspberries, blackberries.

They are expensive, and no matter how many I buy, they're gone the next day.

Haha, we do the same. Berries are the best!! Totally worth the price!~

And those cartons conveniently are serving size!

We are totally addicted to berries, and it's too bad because they are expensive, even in season.

In Old State we lived across the road from a great pick-your-own farm and could get inexpensive strawberries, blueberries, apples, and pumpkins in season. HUGE big baskets of strawberries. Too many strawberries! (Can you believe that there might be such a thing?!)

Now in New State there strangely don't seem to be any such things as pick-your-own farms, though we are pretty rural outside town and plenty of berries grow here. Our only non-grocery-store option is the farmer's market, where the food is local but the berries still aren't cheap. Sigh.

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viviv
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« Reply #130 on: May 24, 2012, 12:39:51 PM »

We spend so much money on berries: blueberries, raspberries, blackberries.

They are expensive, and no matter how many I buy, they're gone the next day.

Haha, we do the same. Berries are the best!! Totally worth the price!~

And those cartons conveniently are serving size!

We are totally addicted to berries, and it's too bad because they are expensive, even in season.

In Old State we lived across the road from a great pick-your-own farm and could get inexpensive strawberries, blueberries, apples, and pumpkins in season. HUGE big baskets of strawberries. Too many strawberries! (Can you believe that there might be such a thing?!)

Now in New State there strangely don't seem to be any such things as pick-your-own farms, though we are pretty rural outside town and plenty of berries grow here. Our only non-grocery-store option is the farmer's market, where the food is local but the berries still aren't cheap. Sigh.



If you have a big yard, why not try "grow your own"? I have no idea about gardening and it sounds exciting!!!
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moodymoodie
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« Reply #131 on: May 24, 2012, 1:19:30 PM »

We spend so much money on berries: blueberries, raspberries, blackberries.

They are expensive, and no matter how many I buy, they're gone the next day.

Haha, we do the same. Berries are the best!! Totally worth the price!~

And those cartons conveniently are serving size!

We are totally addicted to berries, and it's too bad because they are expensive, even in season.

In Old State we lived across the road from a great pick-your-own farm and could get inexpensive strawberries, blueberries, apples, and pumpkins in season. HUGE big baskets of strawberries. Too many strawberries! (Can you believe that there might be such a thing?!)

Now in New State there strangely don't seem to be any such things as pick-your-own farms, though we are pretty rural outside town and plenty of berries grow here. Our only non-grocery-store option is the farmer's market, where the food is local but the berries still aren't cheap. Sigh.



If you have a big yard, why not try "grow your own"? I have no idea about gardening and it sounds exciting!!!

There are strains of strawberries out there that are incredibly easy to grow and difficult to kill (I have such a variety but don't know the name- a friend just gave me the plants and they have multiplied). Dump in the ground, make sure they're watered, pick, eat.
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prytania3
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« Reply #132 on: May 24, 2012, 1:25:15 PM »

We are not as big a fan of strawberries as the darker berries. My son particularly loves raspberries, then blueberries.

I saw on television you can buy blackberry trees, but I could have sworn blackberries grew on vines.
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yellowtractor
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« Reply #133 on: May 24, 2012, 1:47:21 PM »

We are not as big a fan of strawberries as the darker berries. My son particularly loves raspberries, then blueberries.

I saw on television you can buy blackberry trees, but I could have sworn blackberries grew on vines.

I am now going to write a novel called "The Darker Berries."
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oldadjunct
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« Reply #134 on: May 24, 2012, 2:08:50 PM »

We are not as big a fan of strawberries as the darker berries. My son particularly loves raspberries, then blueberries.

I saw on television you can buy blackberry trees, but I could have sworn blackberries grew on vines.

Probably a mulberry tree; true blackberries grow on canes, like raspberries.
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