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Posts Tagged ‘Sardines’

“Back in the day”, the Citizens Band (“CB”) radio was all the rage. I had a CB, my friends had CBs, and we all hand “handles”. A handle is the little name that you gave yourself so that people could “call you” on the radio. I also had a license. CB users (at the time) were required by the FCC to have a Class “D” license and you were given a “call sign”. My call sign started with KAPA but I can not remember the rest right now.

Sorry… I am getting a little carried away with my memory recall. I’m sure you are asking yourself “how does this relate to the title of this entry: ‘Young people eat less fish in Norway’. Well, as I said above, I had a CB handle that friends would use to contact me. And this name does relate to this article. I called myself “The Norwegian Sardine”, because in our house we ate those little King Oscar brisling sardines. I never knew what a brisling was but boy I loved those little fish. Dad would pull from the cabinet one of those flat little cans wrapped in red plastic. After tearing open the wrapper he would pry off the skate key like tool and proceed to open the can. Around and around he would turn the key and after what felt like forever, it would eventually open.

We grew up eating sardines, it was part of our culture, every good Norwegian family as well as many other families from a European heritage had sardines for some of their meals. Back then we were not aware of the health benefits associated with eating fish with high concentrations of Omega-3 fatty oils, today we do know but we usually get our “O3” oils from a pill made from sardines.

I was reading an article last week on NRK.com about the fact that young people and especially young women eat less and less fatty fish in Norway. For most of them the reason is that they do not like the taste. Fish, like vegetables, are an acquired taste and if you are not introduced to them early (my wife the dietitian would say “early and often”) children rarely become adults who eat fish and vegetables. In this article one individual interviewed stated “…it is especially important to do something in relation to young women and get them to eat fish so they can transfer the good habits to the next generation when it comes to eating fish.”  The article noted an article by the Norwegian Helsedirektoratet discussing that “Fish consumption is lower than desired, and substantially lower than the consumption of meat.”

This is so true about many of the dietary issues we see here in the USA and now many health-care providers are seeing them in Norway. Whether it is eating balanced meals at home or ordering the right meals at restaurants and fast food establishments, it is the parents (and in many cases the mother) that have control over what families eat. My wife the dietitian reminds me over and over, parents are the prime teachers of good eating habits. Even if the fast food company targets the kids with toys in their fun meals, the parents have the final say, they can as the NRK.com article implies, use eating right as a “teaching moment”.

Mom, I eat my vegetable every day and still have a can of sardines once a week.

Ken Nordan
Contributing Editor

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