Why The French Are Thin....

Discussion in 'Food and nutrition' started by Gregory Morrow, Jan 29, 2004.

  1. http://www.suntimes.com/output/food/foo-news-will28.html

    Why aren't the French fat like us?

    January 28, 2004

    BY BEVERLY LEVITT

    If ever there were a reason to scowl at the French, let it begin with their healthy waistlines.
    These are the people whose cuisine includes luscious Brie cheese, buttery croissants and calorie-
    rich foie gras. The French diet is 35 percent to 45 percent higher in fat than that of your
    average American.

    Americans neurotically try to fool Mother Nature -- and their cardiologists -- by gorging on faux-
    fat chocolate mousse and fat-free creme brulee (hold the "creme"!). We're the ones pouring nonfat
    half-and-half (talk about an oxymoron) into our decaf cappuccinos.

    The French, on the other hand, seem to have followed their group palate's fancy and enjoyed eating
    what they like for generations.

    Given the differences, you'd think we would be the ones sitting back smiling smugly about our
    well-being.

    Instead, those of us in the United States are losing the battle of the bulge. The United States has
    an obesity rate 30 percent higher than France's. Add to that the fact that we have three times more
    heart attacks than the French. They also have fewer strokes.

    What?!

    Yes, the French are not only thinner than we are, while eating food that would send the American
    diet police into apoplectic fits, their lifespan is statistically longer. They live longer, even
    with all that cigarette smoke curling past every diner's nose in cafes throughout France.

    And thus we have the French Paradox, which a one-time no-fat believer, Will Clower, Ph.D., looks at
    from firsthand experience in The Fat Fallacy, (Three Rivers Press, $12.95)

    Clower and his wife, Dottie, are neuroscientists. They were invited to Lyon, France, to do research
    at the Institute of Cognitive Sciences. They spent two years there with their children and Clower's
    mother, Retha.

    In the United States the couple had religiously observed a strict non-fat diet. They were bored with
    their food and were overweight. Retha Clower was frantically fighting her surge from a Size 12 to an
    unwelcome Size 14 when they left the United States. The Clower children, Ben, 10, and Grace, 4,
    were, well, just typical eat-like-their-parents kids, meaning they, too, were bored with the food on
    their plates.

    As it turned out, the Clowers not only changed continents. Their time in France forced the entire
    family to rethink everything they believed to be true about good diet and health.

    After a few months they fell into the French way of eating -- French bread with butter, raw-milk
    cheese -- and surprising things happened. Clower lost 20 pounds; his wife shed 15. The children
    began to love their food, Grandma Retha abandoned the unsuccessful diet she'd followed at home and
    ate like the French -- and dropped to a Size Six.

    During his two years in Lyon, Clower threw his no-fat menus out the window and developed an entirely
    new outlook on food and eating.

    "This is not to say that the French make no distinctions about the ill effects of fat," Clower said
    during a recent conversation. "All fats aren't created equal; some are definitely better for you
    than others and the fat of some animal meats will kill you," he warns. "If you love red meat, limit
    it to once a month. Learn to lean on chicken and fish."

    OK, that's old news.

    What is fascinating is that the French way of eating is as much cultural as scientific. Their eating
    habits have been nurtured over the centuries, passed down from mother to daughter, from father to
    son, from generation to generation.

    "They're happy to eat that way," said Clower. "It's their comfort food."

    When Clower first arrived in France he had dinner with Regine Fournier, a wonderful example of a
    traditional French woman, Clower said with a smile. "She's like a perfect baguette, crusty on the
    outside, warm on the inside."

    She was only too happy to malign the American obsessive fear of fats.

    Fournier described the French good fat-bad fat theory. Duck (and other poultry) are fine. Milk
    fat, olive oil and nuts are beneficial. But stay away from pig, sheep and cow, she warned, wagging
    her finger.

    "I asked how she knew this," Clower said. "She flashed a grin of superiority and chastised, 'Your
    country is too young to have a memory.' "

    She, on the other hand, knew about healthy fats because her mother had told her who had heard it
    from her grandmother who had been told by her mother and so on and so on.

    "When I asked other French friends, 'How do you know what to eat?' they were flabbergasted, as if
    they didn't understand the question," said Clower.

    Their practice of eating good fats seems to be working.

    The World Health Organization has shown that the French are three times less likely to die of
    ischemic heart disease than we are. The Lyon Diet Heart Study proved the same statistics -- three
    times fewer heart attacks for people on the Mediterranean diet as opposed to the diet advocated by
    the American Heart Association.

    In the diet-obsessed United States we latch onto to newspaper headlines -- Butter Will Kill You,
    Pasta Puts on Pounds -- and are quick to jump on bandwagons to join the latest fad, whether it be no
    fat, low-fat, high carbs or low carbs.

    Whatever the diet, we quickly embrace processed products. Until one day somebody read the
    ingredients on the package. Chemicals. Additives. And the real killer -- partially hydrogenated
    vegetable oil.

    Back to the butter!

    When the medical community prescribed pasta for dieters , we had a traffic jam in the grocery aisle
    formerly known as the noodle section crammed those shiny packages into our carts. Later, scientists
    announced that people on high-carb diet -- replete with pasta -- were gaining weight, so we quickly
    dropped that one.

    "Everything with us is black and white," Clower says. "The French and Italians add 'good fats' such
    as olive oil or cheese to their pasta -- which lowers the glycemic index of the dish -- and they
    walk around satisfied and smiling all day. We don't have to deprive ourselves of something that
    delicious."

    But they don't have it three times a day, he hastens to add. Or even every day. The French, as we
    have learned from Julia Child, if we were listening, practice moderation.

    We embrace fast-food establishments and expect to see them on every corner. The French have ab
    entirely different view. They were up in arms when McDonald's Golden Arches popping up on Champs-
    Elysees and Rue de Rivoli. They viewed fast food as an encroachment of American culinary values onto
    their lifestyles.

    The French also take a dim view of processed foods and artificial flavorings. After experiencing the
    French way of life with meals, Clower came to agree with them.

    "If it's never been alive and it doesn't come up in your spell-checker, it ain't food," Clower
    jokes. "Our body has a biological relationship with things that grow on this planet. If you eat
    something it's never seen and doesn't know how to process, you will introduce health problems."

    Our digestive systems don't do well with items invented in chemistry labs for the sole purpose of
    imitating real food. One of the problems is that the pretenders often taste just as good as the real
    thing. But don't be fooled.

    Clower points to a recent article in the Atlantic Monthly, "Why McDonald's Fries Taste So Good" by
    Eric Schlosser, the author of Fast Food Nation. The investigative journalist reveals that a typical
    strawberry flavoring found in a Burger King milk shake has 48 chemicals.

    One can just imagine what the stomach said to the small intestine when it encountered all those un-
    pronounceable molecular compositions.

    In their zeal to appeal to diet-obsessed American consumers, our chemists invented and food
    manufacturers marketed some 15,000 low-fat, no-fat, counterfeit sweets to a very appreciative
    public, the dieters who had forgotten what a melt-in-your-mouth brownie or moist sour cream coffee
    cake tasted like.

    The danger of these sweet impostors to folks who are being lured into indulging their sweet tooth
    and not suffering the consequences is that instead of relishing a single slice of low-fat or no-
    fat cake they'll invariably devour the whole thing, rationalizing, It's not fattening -- what's
    the problem?

    Forget that it's filled with gobs of the worst kind of fats and a plethora of chemicals already
    proven to be carcinogenic. Or that there's so many sucrose and dextrose stimulants in these
    products, your blood sugar shoots way up, then crashes down, causing the Sugar Blues. And, the
    harshest cut of all, you're hungry right afterward.

    Another difference between Americans and the French is their attitude about meals. We're the grab-and-
    go, dine-on-the-run folks. For the French, a leisurely evening meal with lots of conversation is not
    only a revered custom, it's emblematic of their culture.

    The French think nothing of sitting at table for 2-1/2 hours, savoring their food and their company,
    says Clower.

    Eating together in a gracious, leisurely fashion not only bonds families and friends; it's a key
    factor in the French Paradox, Clower discovered.

    While you're conversing and enjoying the people around you, you're eating slowly. You put down your
    fork to make a point, take a sip of red wine, maybe get up to replace the tired music on the stereo
    with a glorious French opera. You're relaxed so you're not shoveling your food and you don't need to
    feel full to feel satisfied. You end up eating less and digesting it better than if you gulp down
    dinner in 15 minutes on your way from one activity to another.

    When you eat graciously, you actually train your body to expect a lot less food, Clower says. You
    don't need to feel stuffed to know dinner is over. In fact, you'll soon hate the stuffed feeling and
    stop eating well in advance of that happening, he adds.

    Your petit reward for spending several hours at table eating delicious food and enjoying lively
    conversation? The traditional French way of ending a meal is with a bit of luscious chocolate or a
    small wedge of rich, ripe cheese, preferably made of whole raw milk. Sigh...

    Clower discovered that once you adopt this new relationship to food, you're not on a diet at all.
    You start dropping the pounds and are looking forward to mealtimes as never before.

    Now how can a way of eating that is that delicious, that pleasurable, that satisfying not be
    illegal, immoral or fattening? Maybe that is the real French Paradox.

    Beverly Levitt is a Los Angeles-based free-lance writer.

    </
     
    Tags:


  2. Katra

    Katra Guest

  3. Frogleg

    Frogleg Guest

    On 28 Jan 2004 23:30:29 -0800, [email protected] (Gregory
    Morrow) wrote:

    >http://www.suntimes.com/output/food/foo-news-will28.html
    >
    >
    >Why aren't the French fat like us?

    <article in posted URL snipped>

    Well, it's sure not because they all listen to opera during dinner (see article)! They place even
    more social acceptance on thinness than USAsians. They don't snack all day long. They serve small
    portions. It's not a mystery or some magic formula.
     
  4. Nathan

    Nathan Guest

    On Wed, 28 Jan 2004 23:30:29 -0800, Gregory Morrow wrote:

    > http://www.suntimes.com/output/food/foo-news-will28.html
    >
    >
    > Why aren't the French fat like us?

    Here's the final word on nutrition and health.  It's a relief to know the truth after all those
    conflicting medical studies:

    Evidence:

    1.  The Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans.

    2. The Mexicans eat a lot of fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans.

    3.  The Japanese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans.

    4.  The Italians and French drink excessive amounts of red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than
    the  Americans.

    5.  The Germans drink a lot of beer and eat lots of sausages and fats andsuffer fewer heart attacks
    than the Americans.

    Conclusion:  Eat and drink what you like.  Speaking English is apparently what kills you.
     
  5. Daisy

    Daisy Guest

    On Thu, 29 Jan 2004 02:04:41 -0600, Katra
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >In article <[email protected]>, [email protected] (Gregory
    >Morrow) wrote:
    >
    >> http://www.suntimes.com/output/food/foo-news-will28.html
    >>
    >>
    >> Why aren't the French fat like us?
    >>
    >> January 28, 2004
    >>
    >> BY BEVERLY LEVITT
    >>
    >
    ><snipped> Awesome article... Thanks! :)
    >
    >K.

    The original post was too long. The French are thinner than (e.g.) Americans because they walk a lot
    more and use bicycles a lot also. They are also fastidious eaters. They do NOT like the stuff that
    they serve up in tourist traps. I visit with French families when in France and we never, but never,
    have French fries. Servings are quite small compared to those in America. Butter is rarely served
    with croissants. Usually there are conserves (jams) at breakfast - which consists of coffee and one
    croissant with jam and some fresh fruit (but not always the fruit).

    The French are NOT big eaters. I don't think their 3 or 4 course menus would appeal to American
    men, who would probably feel they could eat much more - and I have heard some say so in restaurants
    in France!

    I am petite and not a big eater, and I am always well satisfied with the small servings.

    Perhaps this the crux of this business of The French are Thinner than the Americans rather than the
    cuisine itself.

    Daisy.

    Don't assume malice for what stupidity can explain.
     
  6. Katra

    Katra Guest

    In article <[email protected]>,
    "nathan" <[email protected]> wrote:

    > On Wed, 28 Jan 2004 23:30:29 -0800, Gregory Morrow wrote:
    >
    > > http://www.suntimes.com/output/food/foo-news-will28.html
    > >
    > >
    > > Why aren't the French fat like us?
    >
    > Here's the final word on nutrition and health.  It's a relief to know the truth after all those
    > conflicting medical studies:
    >
    > Evidence:
    >
    > 1.  The Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans.
    >
    > 2. The Mexicans eat a lot of fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans.
    >
    > 3.  The Japanese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans.
    >
    > 4.  The Italians and French drink excessive amounts of red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks
    > than the  Americans.
    >
    > 5.  The Germans drink a lot of beer and eat lots of sausages and fats andsuffer fewer heart
    > attacks than the Americans.
    >
    > Conclusion:  Eat and drink what you like.  Speaking English is apparently what kills you.
    >

    Damn you... Just sent lunch thru my nose! Owch! ;-D

    K.

    --
    Sprout the Mung Bean to reply...

    >,,<Cat's Haven Hobby Farm>,,<[email protected]>,,<
    http://cgi6.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewSellersOtherItems&include=0&userid=katra
     
  7. Dave Smith

    Dave Smith Guest

    Frogleg wrote:

    > Well, it's sure not because they all listen to opera during dinner (see article)! They place even
    > more social acceptance on thinness than USAsians. They don't snack all day long. They serve small
    > portions. It's not a mystery or some magic formula.

    Small portions? I have been to France three times, and most meals were quite bounteous. We went to
    the restaurant in our hotel one evening absolutely famished after having skipped lunch. We ordered
    the three course menu and were stuffed after the appetizer. My wife had a shrimp and avocado salad.
    We were expecting half an avocado with a scoop of shrimp salad in it. What arrived at the table was
    a huge mound of shrimp salad garnished (probably 1 1/2 cups if it) with a whole avocado nicely
    sliced and arranged around it and topped with a dozen large shrimp. My Tourte Lorraine was a sort of
    quiche, about 6 " in diameter and 1 1/2" deep, the bottom half of it being a meat filling.

    We wondered how we could manage our main course after that. We had ordered strip steaks and thought
    that they would not be very big. They were at least 14 oz., and they were served along with huge
    servings of potatoes, carrots and green beans.

    From my experiences in Canadian and American restaurants I have found that you can expect to get a
    large portion of mediocre food or a small serving of good food. From my travels in France and
    Germany I learned that, other than in the main tourist areas where you get soaked, you can expect
    large portions of excellent food.
     
  8. moe

    moe Guest

    On Thu, 29 Jan 2004 02:04:41 -0600, Katra
    : <[email protected]> wrote:

    :>In article <[email protected]>, [email protected] (Gregory
    :>Morrow) wrote:
    :>
    :>> http://www.suntimes.com/output/food/foo-news-will28.html
    :>>
    :>>
    :>> Why aren't the French fat like us?
    :>>
    :>> January 28, 2004
    :>>
    :>> BY BEVERLY LEVITT
    :>>
    :>
    :><snipped> Awesome article... Thanks! :)
    :>
    :>K.

    It's also because of all the red wine they drink with every meal. Babies are fed wine in their
    bottles instead of milk.

    : The original post was too long. The French are thinner than (e.g.) Americans because they walk a
    : lot more and use bicycles a lot also. They are also fastidious eaters. They do NOT like the stuff
    : that they serve up in tourist traps. I visit with French families when in France and we never, but
    : never, have French fries. Servings are quite small compared to those in America. Butter is rarely
    : served with croissants. Usually there are conserves (jams) at breakfast - which consists of coffee
    : and one croissant with jam and some fresh fruit (but not always the fruit).

    : The French are NOT big eaters. I don't think their 3 or 4 course menus would appeal to American
    : men, who would probably feel they could eat much more - and I have heard some say so in
    : restaurants in France!

    : I am petite and not a big eater, and I am always well satisfied with the small servings.

    : Perhaps this the crux of this business of The French are Thinner than the Americans rather than
    : the cuisine itself.

    : Daisy.

    : Don't assume malice for what stupidity can explain.
     
  9. Kilikini

    Kilikini Guest

    (snip)

    > >
    > > Here's the final word on nutrition and health. It's a relief to know the truth after all those
    > > conflicting medical studies:
    > >
    > > Evidence:
    > >
    > > 1. The Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans.
    > >
    > > 2. The Mexicans eat a lot of fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans.
    > >
    > > 3. The Japanese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans.
    > >
    > > 4. The Italians and French drink excessive amounts of red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks
    > > than the Americans.
    > >
    > > 5. The Germans drink a lot of beer and eat lots of sausages and fats andsuffer fewer heart
    > > attacks than the Americans.
    > >
    > > Conclusion: Eat and drink what you like. Speaking English is apparently what kills you.
    > >
    >
    > Damn you... Just sent lunch thru my nose! Owch! ;-D
    >
    > K.
    >
    > --
    > Sprout the Mung Bean to reply...
    >
    > >,,<Cat's Haven Hobby Farm>,,<[email protected]>,,<
    >
    http://cgi6.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewSellersOtherItems&include=0&userid =katra

    I agree, that was a good one! <g> kili
     
  10. Frogleg

    Frogleg Guest

    On Thu, 29 Jan 2004 17:05:50 -0500, Dave Smith
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Frogleg wrote:
    >
    >> Well, it's sure not because they all listen to opera during dinner (see article)! They place even
    >> more social acceptance on thinness than USAsians. They don't snack all day long. They serve small
    >> portions. It's not a mystery or some magic formula.
    >
    >Small portions? I have been to France three times, and most meals were quite bounteous. We went to
    >the restaurant in our hotel one evening absolutely famished after having skipped lunch. We ordered
    >the three course menu and were stuffed after the appetizer. My wife had a shrimp and avocado salad.
    >We were expecting half an avocado with a scoop of shrimp salad in it. What arrived at the table was
    >a huge mound of shrimp salad garnished (probably 1 1/2 cups if it) with a whole avocado nicely
    >sliced and arranged around it and topped with a dozen large shrimp. My Tourte Lorraine was a sort
    >of quiche, about 6 " in diameter and 1 1/2" deep, the bottom half of it being a meat filling.

    Perhaps I should have added that they eat at home more. :) Banquet, restaurant, and special
    occasion food can be quite different from everyday eating habits. I got a single lunch at my local
    takeout Chinese a couple of weeks ago, and had !5! full meals from it. A pint of egg-drop soup (with
    a packet of fried noodles), about 2-1/2 cups of pork fried rice, 2 cups of battered, fried chicken
    pieces in a sweet sauce, and a fortune cookie! All the people who work in the store are slim as
    minnows. They *obviously* don't eat that kind of lunch (or dinner) every day.
     
  11. Nabuco

    Nabuco Guest

    Frogleg <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > On Thu, 29 Jan 2004 17:05:50 -0500, Dave Smith <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    > >Frogleg wrote:
    > >
    > >> Well, it's sure not because they all listen to opera during dinner (see article)! They place
    > >> even more social acceptance on thinness than USAsians. They don't snack all day long. They
    > >> serve small portions. It's not a mystery or some magic formula.
    > >
    > >Small portions? I have been to France three times, and most meals were quite bounteous. We went
    > >to the restaurant in our hotel one evening absolutely famished after having skipped lunch. We
    > >ordered the three course menu and were stuffed after the appetizer. My wife had a shrimp and
    > >avocado salad. We were expecting half an avocado with a scoop of shrimp salad in it. What arrived
    > >at the table was a huge mound of shrimp salad garnished (probably 1 1/2 cups if it) with a whole
    > >avocado nicely sliced and arranged around it and topped with a dozen large shrimp. My Tourte
    > >Lorraine was a sort of quiche, about 6 " in diameter and 1 1/2" deep, the bottom half of it being
    > >a meat filling.
    >

    Perhaps...the French are not thin... after all. I've spent a year in France in Strasbourg with
    numerous outings to Paris and various other cities. And on more than one occasion I was stunned,
    like when I discovered they love.....french fries. Like in the famous "Moules frites".... you
    guessed it right... Mussels+french fries. Or steak+....you guessed it. Or that French don't drink
    much alcohol. Or that they are not thin. But one thing is for sure surprising to a US visitor. The
    food is expensive!!! And eating out even more so. Even chinese restaurants in Paris are expensive.
    Most French indulge at most at fast food restaurants. So when in France don't go Ronald, go Flunch
    for the real french fast food.
     
  12. Jimlane

    Jimlane Guest

    Gregory Morrow wrote:

    > http://www.suntimes.com/output/food/foo-news-will28.html
    >
    >

    Snip of material I am sure you do not have permission to reproduce in its entirety.

    The newspaper(s) that you are cutting and pasting might take exception to your doing under
    copyright law.

    Why not a tricky lead and the URL alone. That works. If it hits the spot, most will probably go and
    read. If we wouldn't, then we might not read it here.

    That said, good article.

    jim
     
  13. Jimlane

    Jimlane Guest

    nathan wrote:
    > On Wed, 28 Jan 2004 23:30:29 -0800, Gregory Morrow wrote:
    >
    >
    >>http://www.suntimes.com/output/food/foo-news-will28.html
    >>
    >>
    >>Why aren't the French fat like us?
    >
    >
    > Here's the final word on nutrition and health. It's a relief to know the truth after all those
    > conflicting medical studies:
    >
    > Evidence:
    >
    > 1. The Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans.
    >
    > 2. The Mexicans eat a lot of fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans.
    >
    > 3. The Japanese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans.
    >
    > 4. The Italians and French drink excessive amounts of red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks
    > than the Americans.
    >
    > 5. The Germans drink a lot of beer and eat lots of sausages and fats andsuffer fewer heart
    > attacks than the Americans.
    >
    > Conclusion: Eat and drink what you like. Speaking English is apparently what kills you.
    >

    What a hoot!

    jim
     
  14. Steve Wertz

    Steve Wertz Guest

    On 28 Jan 2004 23:30:29 -0800, [email protected]
    (Gregory Morrow) wrote:

    >And thus we have the French Paradox,

    <yawn>

    Boy, never heard that before.

    -sw
     
  15. Al

    Al Guest

    "kilikini" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:jEhSb.30606
    > > > Here's the final word on nutrition and health. It's a relief to know the truth after all those
    > > > conflicting medical studies:
    > > >
    > > > Evidence:
    > > >
    > > > 1. The Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans.
    > > >
    > > > 2. The Mexicans eat a lot of fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans.
    > > >
    > > > 3. The Japanese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than the Americans.
    > > >
    > > > 4. The Italians and French drink excessive amounts of red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks
    > > > than the Americans.
    > > >
    > > > 5. The Germans drink a lot of beer and eat lots of sausages and fats andsuffer fewer heart
    > > > attacks than the Americans.
    > > >
    > > > Conclusion: Eat and drink what you like. Speaking English is apparently what kills you.
    > > >
    > >
    > > Damn you... Just sent lunch thru my nose! Owch! ;-D
    > >

    Except there's not an American out there that can speak English ....

    a
     
  16. Alzelt

    Alzelt Guest

    Nabuco wrote:

    > Frogleg <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:<[email protected]>...
    >
    >>On Thu, 29 Jan 2004 17:05:50 -0500, Dave Smith <[email protected]> wrote:
    >>
    >>
    >>>Frogleg wrote:
    >>>
    >>>
    >>>>Well, it's sure not because they all listen to opera during dinner (see article)! They place
    >>>>even more social acceptance on thinness than USAsians. They don't snack all day long. They serve
    >>>>small portions. It's not a mystery or some magic formula.
    >>>
    >>>Small portions? I have been to France three times, and most meals were quite bounteous. We went
    >>>to the restaurant in our hotel one evening absolutely famished after having skipped lunch. We
    >>>ordered the three course menu and were stuffed after the appetizer. My wife had a shrimp and
    >>>avocado salad. We were expecting half an avocado with a scoop of shrimp salad in it. What arrived
    >>>at the table was a huge mound of shrimp salad garnished (probably 1 1/2 cups if it) with a whole
    >>>avocado nicely sliced and arranged around it and topped with a dozen large shrimp. My Tourte
    >>>Lorraine was a sort of quiche, about 6 " in diameter and 1 1/2" deep, the bottom half of it being
    >>>a meat filling.
    >>
    >
    > Perhaps...the French are not thin... after all. I've spent a year in France in Strasbourg with
    > numerous outings to Paris and various other cities.

    And now that you are an expert...............

    And on more than one occasion I was stunned, like when I
    > discovered they love.....french fries. Like in the famous "Moules frites".... you guessed it
    > right... Mussels+french fries. Or steak+....

    Wow, what a startling discovery. To think, someone eats fries besides Americans.

    you guessed it. Or that French don't drink much alcohol.

    Really, compared to whom?

    Or
    > that they are not thin.

    No, not thin, but, as a society, not fat nor obese.

    But one thing is for sure surprising to a US
    > visitor. The food is expensive!!! And eating out even more so. Even chinese restaurants in Paris
    > are expensive. Most French indulge at most at fast food restaurants.

    Wow, another bon mot. French eat out often, but for the most part at consuemr friendly bistro's,
    eating a prix fixe meal, which are very good bargains. I realize that this may surprise you, but
    most French do not eat at Michlein starred restaurants. As a result, it is not expensive to eat out
    in France. Considering a three course prix fixe meal, most always cheaper than in the States.

    --
    Alan

    "If you reject the food, ignore the customs, fear the religion, and avoid the people, you might bet-
    ter stay home."
    -- James Michener
     
  17. Ellie C

    Ellie C Guest

    al wrote: ...

    >>>>
    >>>>Conclusion: Eat and drink what you like. Speaking English is apparently what kills you.
    >>>>
    >>>
    >>>Damn you... Just sent lunch thru my nose! Owch! ;-D
    >>>
    >>
    >
    > Except there's not an American out there that can speak English ....

    Surely you must have meant to say "who can speak English".

    >
    >
    > a
     
  18. Al

    Al Guest

    "Ellie C" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > >>>>Conclusion: Eat and drink what you like. Speaking English is apparently what kills you.
    > >>>>
    > >>>
    > >>>Damn you... Just sent lunch thru my nose! Owch! ;-D
    > >>>
    > >>
    > >
    > > Except there's not an American out there that can speak English ....
    >
    >
    > Surely you must have meant to say "who can speak English".
    >

    Just pointing out that most what's out there can't .. innit ... ;p

    a
     
  19. Pltrgyst

    Pltrgyst Guest

    On Sat, 31 Jan 2004 13:48:25 -0000, "al" <{ask_me}@blueyonder.co.uk>
    wrote:

    >> > Except there's not an American out there that can speak English ....
    >>
    >> Surely you must have meant to say "who can speak English".
    >
    >Just pointing out that most what's out there can't .. innit ... ;p

    There's nothing like language criticism from an illiterate Englishman.

    -- Larry (Welsh/American)
     
  20. Al

    Al Guest

    "pltrgyst" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > On Sat, 31 Jan 2004 13:48:25 -0000, "al" <{ask_me}@blueyonder.co.uk> wrote:
    >
    > >> > Except there's not an American out there that can speak English ....
    > >>
    > >> Surely you must have meant to say "who can speak English".
    > >
    > >Just pointing out that most what's out there can't .. innit ... ;p
    >
    > There's nothing like language criticism from an illiterate Englishman.
    >

    Well here's to hoping you actually get irony ....

    a
     
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