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Bartosh

Here’s to our health — and someone else’s wealth

  Seeing as how illness can no longer be inexpensively remedied — and the so-called “Affordable Health Care Act” won’t change that — I suppose all of us should be concentrating more on improved health.

  This would be simple if not for one thing: life. It’s certainly preferable to death, but life does throw us some curveballs, many of which induce stress. Too much stress is a whole lot worse on a person’s system than too much bacon.
  And speaking of food, eating nutritiously, though advisable, is not feasible for many folks unless Congress also decides to someday ram an “Affordable Food Cost Act” down our throats.
  Going green describes my facial color when I look at the price tags attached to some of these healthier-lifestyle food options. Personally, I don’t see the rationale in taking out a loan just to purchase an organically grown head of cauliflower.


  Nevertheless, there’s always a market, super or otherwise, out there for anyone with a new product to sell, particularly when said item claims to be good for you by promoting better health. One I recently learned of was brought to my attention via an advertising email, which undoubtedly was designed to promote better sales.
  It’s called “Daily Superfood Blend” — remember, if “super” appears anywhere in a name, it has to be worthwhile — and it’s one of the latest entries into the let’s-eat-healthier sweepstakes. According to the email, these vegetarian capsules are “made with rainforest berries and fruits, freshwater greens, cacao, medicinal mushrooms, adaptogenic roots and therapeutic spices.”
  Weren’t medicinal mushrooms the kind of thing Jack Webb used to bust teenaged miscreants for possession of back in the 1960s incarnation of “Dragnet?”
  And what’s with these “adaptogenic roots” and “therapeutic spices?” They sound like ingredients in a potion Grandpa Munster would whip up in his lab to instantly turn Herman into Francis Muldoon.
  (If you’re not old enough to completely understand the reference, consult a parent or a MeTV weekend schedule).
  We’re told that Daily Superfood Blend capsules, though chock full of things I wouldn’t dare think of purchasing separately, supposedly will “detoxify, strengthen the immune system, and build us up and balance us in areas where our body is depleted.”
  Or maybe our potato chip-munching bodies will simply reject the intrusive, good-for-us capsules to make room for more snacks.
  Even if that doesn’t happen, we should digest all this information about Daily Superfood Blend with a grain of salt substitute because we can’t always believe what we read outside of this column space. Do you recall that, once upon a time, bottled water was considered superior to the stuff we get out of our kitchen taps?
  Turns out it really wasn’t, so I choose to reserve judgment here as well, at least for the moment. But that email about Daily Superfood Blend wasn’t the only one that recently made its way into my “in” box.
  So, too, did a short article about former pro tennis player Pam Shriver’s foray into the promote-a-sensible-diet field. Although not hawking for Daily Superfood Blend, Shriver, a brand ambassador for Salonpas, also spoke of the need for Americans to “eat clean” by eliminating as much as possible their intake of “processed foods that are laden with high sodium, sugar and trans-fats.”
  I wonder how well that would go over with the Camden Yards crowds. Shriver is a minority owner of the Baltimore Orioles, but somehow I doubt that ballpark vendors have done away completely with hot dogs, nachos and cheese, salted peanuts and buttered popcorn.
  Oh well, at least all of those can be washed down with an overpriced diet soda or light beer.
  Let’s face it, even many of the guys we watch perform at places like Camden Yards probably don’t adhere to an especially strict regimen when it comes to what they put into their bodies. If they did, it’s highly unlikely they’d potentially risk their long-term well-being with performance-enhancing drugs in order to hit a few more homers.
  Babe Ruth did just fine, thank you, while subsisting largely on a suds-and-sausages diet. Guys like Harmon Killebrew, Mickey Lolich and Wilbur Wood also pieced together lengthy baseball careers despite not being shy around buffet tables.
  Football players are no different. Or do we honestly believe that all the 330-pound offensive linemen we see populating the professional and college — and, heck, sometimes even the high school — ranks these days got that way without ever opting for their fair share of feeds-a-family-of-four-sized meals?
  Offer them a weight-loss plan and watch them endure job loss instead.
  Having said that, please don’t think I’m suggesting we cavalierly thumb our noses at every health-conscious recommendation that reaches our ears or eyes. The folks making them are only doing so for our physical benefit, unless they have a product to peddle, in which case they’re probably speaking out for their own financial benefit.
  However, if you want to get a reasonably accurate gauge on how many years you can expect to be hanging around this planet, don’t get bogged down in meal planning. Shinny up the family tree instead.
  Find out if old Granddad really was an old granddad who made it into his ninth or 10th decade of life, and if Grandma grew equally long in the false tooth. If that’s so, then the gene pool has been chlorinated for your protection against a premature draining of you from it.
  That’s not a guarantee, of course, or an invitation to throw all caution to the winds, a la Bill Murray in “Groundhog Day.” Putting Punxsutawney Phil at the wheel and having him drive your car over a cliff is almost certainly not going to end well for you.
  One final note on Daily Superfood Blend: its target audience is parents on the go. If parents are too busy to sit down and eat a normal meal with their children, that means they probably both have jobs and, thus, can afford to buy all those high-priced specialty foods that Daily Superfood Blend is supposedly replacing.
  So why would they need the capsules?
  The choice is yours, but I believe there’s only one decision to make. And it’s worth considering for you, too.
  For me, 714 homers trump all else.