Did you know: We can cook our health problems away?

You know, “If they make you smile, tell them.”

That’s how I end up talking to naked chicken in a glass box as I pass by fast food outlets after exchanging a cheek-to-cheek grin with them. That’s the extent of my little love affair with fried edibles from fast food outlets, which also tend to be wallet-friendly.
But I’d never imagined that such foods would be blamed by a pal for the scarcity of wife material in the Kenyan wife market.

While shooting the breeze at our famous mbuzi panfry joint at KBS, because fried substances have admitted us into the intensive-don’t-care-unit, Okello noted that young ladies these days don’t cook and don’t know how-to because of the takeaways you can grab from every corner of the streets.

Flashback to last week; A blood-donation drive in town, combined with a healthy-eating campaign sensitized people that their gonads might fall off if they ditch avocados. Not exactly that, but that’s the bit I remembered after a handful serving of pamphlets and a nearly spiritual talk-down by nutritionists on the grounds.

Considering that my blood type is COFFEE, you’d wonder what on earth I was doing in such a blood-drive but I just wanted to confirm. However, it was boring; like these Facebook user-experience surveys that keep popping up on my feed. The same banter of less nyama choma, less alcohol (I’m safe), fewer deep-fries, more greens, more plant proteins specifically made me realize there’s nothing simple about staying healthy and it irks me. The very fabric of the Nairobian male mind is woven in nyama choma and mutura. In fact, just lazily thinking of mutura in bed makes me fall asleep mid-yawn.

While my pal can blame his girlfriends (and wives for the rest of you) for refusing to cook and getting most of our vitamins from the daylight, I think there’s an ongoing scam. Today while setting on a concrete bench, a healthy-living-products sales-lady tried to coax me into using nutritional supplements. She sugar-coated her sermon by asking me to join their network marketing strategy towards a healthy nation. I nearly joined but I have a church already. I’d heard of such a plan before and it surely has left some of my buddies going in circles like the children of Israel did around Mt. Sinai for 40 years. But, why these nutritional supplements consumerism? It’s all over.

The poor are dying of malnutrition. The middle-class harbor lifestyle diseases in their bodies. I’m the thin line in-between. It’s funny-strange though how the ballooning middle-class engage in unhealthy eating (salted packed foods, deep-fried red meats, artificially-spiced cuisines) yet supplement with nutritional tablets. Weird, is it? It’s these circles I’m ranting about. Of course, I know it’s hard. I once tried grounded Moringa leaves (that green powder that smells like a freshly-mown field and tastes like sadness) I’d acquired from an herbalist for a few weeks before I lost interest in my own health.

Talk about my own health, a dentist friend nearly scared me into fighting the good fight when he suggested my dentures ‘are on a downward spiral’. Not literally talking of their shape though. Well, my whole body may as well be, to the chagrin of health demons. Nevertheless, let’s just conclude it this way: that junk from fast food holes is not so good, outsourced cooked packed foods have ingredients that are still a mystery and cooking your own meals helps you draw your own healthy-diet curve. I recently confessed that I love eating but hate cooking. This post is a “let’s cook” drive.

Furthermore, eating too much cake can make you hairy. I guess due to the raisins. Bananas too. They somehow make your body-hair go bananas and scares them out of their follicles. I learned this from my barber; thanks to the circle of knowledge. And while beans might make you yawn frequently from ‘behind’, they make your hair strong. That’s for ladies I guess. Avoid too much-processed salts if you don’t want to shed your hair faster than a snake sheds skin. That’s for hairy chests I guess. Fish, remember is good for your brain. That’s why despite my ongoing mental problems, I’m fine.

All these are readily available raw. These are nutritional tips you can trade for tablets because we don’t live in those days when our ancestors woke up to hunt five squirrels, gather amarula fruit and dig out mukombero roots for a day’s energy requirements. I’d give my left nipple to have lived in those ages. Now, the only animals huntedly available in a city are rats from the city council bins. However, there’s hope. Groundnuts, I hear will help us procreate like the good book of Genesis commands of us. The future generations will thank us when they look back and refer to us as their ancestors.

About the scarcity of wife material, I’ll let the pastors and visiting preachers from Nigeria address that. “In fact, you do not know how much spice a woman’s twirling behind, swaying by the rhythm as she rolls chapati into shape on a rolling board in the kitchen can add to a relationship.” Just quoting a Nigerian movie.

Nevertheless, remember its food that makes you fat. So watch out for a piece on weight loss strategies. Meanwhile, this piece has been influenced by a blend of fear and guilt for your health, cock-tailed with a bowl of unconditional love and patriotism.

This piece, We can cook our health problems away, by Lweya Joe, first appeared in the Standard on 18th October 2016.


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