The land of picky eaters

Question: How can foodies eat healthy?

Marc Bessler: Yeah that’s a big problem because restaurants tend to put things in that make food taste better and food that tastes good usually is somewhat fatty. A lot of places have their calorie counts of foods and the protein etc, contents, avoiding fried things, steamed etc. using sauces not heavy sauces and not so liberally to take a food that’s say high protein, not flavored with fats and oils and putting some small amount of flavorful sauce on it that’s not fat based. Unfortunately a lot of cream sauces and things like that, butter, comes along with cooking. So, you know, picking the right foods, vegetables steamed, not buried in lots of cream sauce, fish, meats etc. that are relatively lean and being careful with the carbohydrates that you pick, the bread on the table, probably something to stay away from but the wild rice on the menu probably okay. The mashed potatoes maybe not as good as, you know, the sweet potatoes or like I say higher Glycemic index or picking the right types of foods, educating yourself about what and then asking questions about how things are cooked.

Question: Is it healthy to be vegetarian or vegan? 

Marc Bessler: I think healthy means well balanced to some degree, I think you can do vegetarian or vegan well as long as you know what you’re doing and you’re careful about it. You can get all the protein sources and vitamin sources you need from the right combination of vegetarian materials absolutely. It’s hard to be pure vegan and get in the right protein mix unless you really know what you’re doing. So if you’re gonna stay away from fish, eggs, meats, cheeses, milks, you gotta be really careful with your balance of nuts and beans and corn and rice and things like that to get the right protein mix in because there are certain amino acids that the body can’t produce but that are necessary and if you don’t get those in it won’t be healthy. The right amounts of fats can also be gotten from a vegan diet, as long as you pick the right foods.


Recorded on: 6/16/08

Dr. Marc Bessler cautions carbophobes to maintain a balanced diet.

Live on Monday: Does the US need one billion people?

What would happen if you tripled the US population? Join Matthew Yglesias and Charles Duhigg at 1pm ET on Monday, September 28.

Ultracold gas exhibits bizarre quantum behavior

New experiments find weird quantum activity in supercold gas.

Credit: Pixabay
Surprising Science
  • Experiments on an ultracold gas show strange quantum behavior.
  • The observations point to applications in quantum computing.
  • The find may also advance chaos theory and explain the butterfly effect.
  • Keep reading Show less

    Learn innovation with 3-star Michelin chef Dominique Crenn

    Dominique Crenn, the only female chef in America with three Michelin stars, joins Big Think Live.

    Big Think LIVE

    Having been exposed to mavericks in the French culinary world at a young age, three-star Michelin chef Dominique Crenn made it her mission to cook in a way that is not only delicious and elegant, but also expressive, memorable, and true to her experience.

    Keep reading Show less

    3 cognitive biases perpetuating racism at work — and how to overcome them

    Researchers say that moral self-licensing occurs "because good deeds make people feel secure in their moral self-regard."

    Photo by Christina @ on Unsplash
    Personal Growth

    Books about race and anti-racism have dominated bestseller lists in the past few months, bringing to prominence authors including Ibram Kendi, Ijeoma Oluo, Reni Eddo-Lodge, and Robin DiAngelo.

    Keep reading Show less

    A new minimoon is headed towards Earth, and it’s not natural

    Astronomers spot an object heading into Earth orbit.

    Credit: PHOTOCREO Michal Bednarek/Paitoon Pornsuksomboon/Shutterstock/Big Think
    Surprising Science
  • Small objects such as asteroids get trapped for a time in Earth orbit, becoming "minimoons."
  • Minimoons are typically asteroids, but this one is something else.
  • The new minimoon may be part of an old rocket from the 1960s.
  • Keep reading Show less

    Only 35 percent of Americans know the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease

    Yet 80 percent of respondents want to reduce their risk of dementia.

    Photo: Lightspring / Shutterstock
    Mind & Brain
    • A new MDVIP/Ipsos survey found that only 35 percent of Americans know the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease.
    • Eighty percent of respondents said they want to reduce their risks.
    • An estimated 7.1 million Americans over the age of 65 will suffer from Alzheimer's by 2025.
    Keep reading Show less