Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Overthinking Pop Tarts.

I noticed the other day that my "Cookies & Cream" Pop Tarts say that they are a "Good Source Of 7 Vitamins & Minerals," and I walked away from the cupboard thinking Boy it's great to live in a world where we can create a food literally from pure science like that and it still has 7 vitamins and minerals.  I love the future!

It only occurred to me later that I didn't know which particular vitamins and minerals I was getting from those (obviously healthy?) treats, and also I have no idea how many vitamins and minerals I should be getting, each day.  Is 7 a lot? Is it just right? Or should I be eating even more Pop Tarts?

So I went and looked.

The vitamins are A and B6. Pop Tarts give me 10% of what I need of those each day, so, not very helpful.  But that's per tart so actually you have to double the numbers. Too little vitamin A and you go blind, so I'm helping keep my eyes sharp by having Cookies & Cream for breakfast.  Too little vitamin B6, meanwhile, and your skin will erupt. Vitamin B6 also helps your body make antibodies, which actually my body does TOO well, thanks (I think) to those bees all those years ago.

Another vitamin in Pop Tarts is riboflavin.  I have always loved riboflavin.  When I was 17 some friends of mine and I formed a revolutionary group we called Rebellious Youth Without Phones.  That was our name. It didn't mean anything because this was the 80s so nobody "had" phones. We just thought it was cool.  We would write "RYWP" on chalkboards in empty classrooms and wait for people to talk about what it all meant.  Nobody ever did.

We adopted policies, as a group.  Our policies were: Ulysses S. Grant was the greatest president in American history, and people should get more riboflavin.  That was what we stood for, those two things.

Too little riboflavin can lead to a swelling of mucus membranes and sores in your mouth.

A year later, we changed the name of the group to Critical Mass and decided it would be a punk-rock band rather than a revolutionary group.  I was the only one who knew how to play an instrument, which didn't matter because we more just liked the idea of being a band, as much as we had liked the idea of being a revolutionary group.

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