Friday, November 9, 2007
The Filipino Paradox
Some decades ago, people wondered why the French did not suffer as much from heart ailments as other people from other countries do. This is despite the fact that the people of France consume legendary palatable delights oozing with cream and fat—the main ingredients to heart disease. They called this the French paradox.
Experts believe they have solved the mystery behind the French paradox. The French do not suffer as much from heart problems as other people do because they customarily consume red wine together with their rich food.
I wonder if some experts can solve the Filipino paradox too.
My mother-in-law has been a staunch carnivore all her life. Since the time she sprouted her first set of milk teeth until today, the major, if not the only significant component of her diet has been pork meat with generous fat margins on the side. She consumes tremendous amounts of these everyday usually with a bottle of cola. She is so in love with pork fat that if she had limited funds she would move heaven and earth for a taste of pork. She is a few years shy of sixty and she has never had a stroke. Every year, she is given a clean bill of health.
We also have male neighbors aged 30-60 who also eat loads of pork. On top of that, they also frequently siphon the beer supply of the local store until it’s as dry as the Sahara. They will stop drinking only when pigs start to fly.
I believe my in-law and neighbors aren’t the only ones who regularly feast on pork and alcohol. Every weekend, our city holds what is known as the night café where stalls that stretch through a couple of blocks all sell beer and grilled pork in abundance. That doesn’t include the numerous bars, restaurants and cafes that all serve death in dishes and mugs.
I wonder why my beer and pork loving friends haven’t had heart attacks and liver diseases yet. Maybe there really is such as thing as a Filipino paradox.