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May 20, 2015 / Apley Estate - Hamiltons

Thought for the Day – the importance of food & mealtimes

Thought for the Day logo22 June 2013, F wrote initials on slate placematsDr Sam Wells, vicar of St Martin the Fields in London, spoke recently on Thought for the Day on BBC Radio 4 about food – how, when, where, who, what, why (what I call The Six Questions). It struck a chord with me, as Apley Farm Shop in Shropshire focusses on local food to local people, from local producers. We’re all about real food – consumers can easily know the provenance of the food they’re buying. Eating should be a sharing & sociable activity – it should be one of life’s greatest pleasures. It’s true that food is our medicine & we are what we eat, so we should give it the attention it deserves. Apley is where you find great food, great fun, great shopping – you can find good food in Apley Farm Shop & share it in The Creamery Café, Pigg’s Playbarn, on the Skylark Nature Trail or back home.

Although I think I eat very healthy food, I’m guilty of eating out of necessity (it seems there is never enough time in the day) & not socially – eg. I almost never sit down for breakfast & lunch takes 5mins, but I do always sit down with our family for a proper family supper. Mealtimes, whether with family, friends or neighbours, give time for sharing news & making plans – they’re not just about eating. Two good rules (whenever possible) are 1) always sit down to eat & 2) eat with someone.

The French love food, are proud of French agriculture & make a real meal (excuse the pun !) of lunch, unlike the English who eat at their desks (I do too !). They go out together to eat lunch in local restaurants & cafés. Then after work / school, they eat supper with their children (who therefore tend to go to bed later than English children).

Dr Wells kindly allowed me to give you opportunity to hear him again – just click HERE.

This subject of food & eating is closely linked to sport, which I believe holds the answer to many of today’s problems – globally. There are many charities encouraging children to get into sport, but also theatre, which has similar benefits – but they need to reach the parents first. They have appreciate the importance & benefits of sport, as they’re the ones organising their children’s time & getting them to the sports venues. A possible solution is perhaps teams (if necessary, volunteers) who go to the homes of children whose parents don’t want to go out themselves, to collect the children, take them (by minibus or on foot) to the sporting activities & then return them home again (all with parents’ consent of course).

Along the same lines (or cycle lanes in this case), just think how the simple bicycle holds the answers to 3 of the First World’s biggest problems – environmental pollution, depression & obesity – so go Dutch & get on your bike !

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