When chicken was luxury, crisps a treat
It was recently reported that people are living longer and the number of centenarians is increasing.
However, the younger years of today's senior citizens were very different from those of today's youth. As 2012 ends, I was prompted to consider some of the many changes which have occurred in a relatively short time.
Home-cooking using fresh produce was the norm. Chicken was a luxury and a packet of plain crisps was a treat. The only takeaway was from the local chippy. Fast food, ready meals and supermarkets did not exist.
There were no low fat, low sugar, low salt or low calorie foods. Despite this, obesity was rare. People only drank alcohol in pubs and binge-drinking was unknown.
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Today, our bodies are bombarded with chemicals and pollution as well as microwaves and other technological toxins. Despite all the antibacterial products available today, bugs and bacteria flourish and illnesses are constantly occurring and mutating.
In the past, homes were not centrally-heated and, in the winter, frost patterns adorned the insides of bedroom windows, but we survived.
Cosmetic surgery was the prerogative of Hollywood film stars and nail bars were only found in hardware shops. Mobiles were novelties suspended from ceilings.
Only "posh" people had cars, telephones or televisions. The only violence seen was a shoot-out or fight in a cowboy film.
Despite all the labour-saving gadgets, home comforts and technological advances of today, tens of thousands of people are addicted to drugs, both legal and illegal. Diabetes will probably bankrupt the NHS. It is estimated there is a one-in-three chance of developing cancer and the over-use of antibiotics is reducing their efficacy. We are overseeing a mass extinction of flora and fauna.
But don't worry, we can look forward to GM foods and evermore turbulent and extreme weather patterns. Good luck to the younger generation which I hope produces many centenarians, and Happy New Year!
Elizabeth Allison, Aylestone.