EPISODE 12: Got Healthy? Really?

In search of the truth, Special Agents William Neal and Patrick Cuccaro explore the mysterious Green world of sustainable special events and catering. What myths will they shatter? What will they uncover?


The Truth is out there…so we’re told.



In Episode 11, Patrick quizzed William about one of his upcoming sustainability oriented brides. In this next episode, they continue along those same lines and explore some healthy habits related to food, exercise and the coming of spring.


PATRICK: I just finished off that last little bit of the killer stew recipe you gave me! I made a “mongo” batch full of all sorts of goodness. The beef I used was hormone-free and lean, the veggies were local and the tummies were so happy!


WILLIAM: So, Agent C, was that stew finished off before or AFTER you went to the gym?


PATRICK: Uh…I followed up with a trip to the gym. The stew had already warmed me up, so I worked up a good sweat.


WILLIAM: Speaking of sweating, have you tried to read the label on one of those supplement bottles lately? Or for that matter, just something off the shelves at the grocery store? Most of the time the listing of preservatives, stabilizers and whatever else they can think of will make you feel like you just ran a few miles. Scary, too. Seriously…what’s going on here?!


PATRICK: Agent N, we talked about green posers before, but I am sorry to say that the food manufacturing industry is one of the biggest offenders. From items labeled “natural” to out and out lies about the origin of certain items, the FDA has not done their job regulating labels to the benefit of the consumer.


WILLIAM: In our world today, so much has to get our attention to keep pace. I think these manufactures COUNT on us all being too busy to really read the labels. If we did, and I do, they would be out of a job, and they should be!


PATRICK: Sing it loud and clear, Agent N! I agree with you! Now you are climbing onto one of MY favorite soapboxes!


I work at living a sustainable existence as much as I can, and I believe that many others do, too. Every time I walk through one of the Atlanta’s farmers markets I feel like many of those around me feel the same way.


The odds are not in our favor unless we MAKE them favorable odds. So, taking the time to read and understand food labels is part of that. Here are some of the biggest label pitfalls to healthy eating:


Made with Whole Grains – If whole wheat flour is the third ingredient listed behind other flour products or worse, a filler product, then you can be confident that very little of the good stuff resides in that loaf of bread calling your name.


Made with Real Fruit – Shocking lie. In fact, the majority of manufactured food products with this label actually refer to what the USDA considers another form of sugar: blended not surprisingly with corn syrup. In other words, you just bought candy.


Contains Fiber – Straight from the folks you really can trust (to a degree) Good Housekeeping: Most fiber in our pre-packed food is actually synthetic with such lovely benefits as actually LOWERING GOOD CHOLESTEROL and do not help your body excrete anything, but a stomach ache.


WILLIAM: Holy Organic, Batman! I had no idea!


PATRICK: Most people don’t, Agent Neal. That is why, since everyone has a little bit of  detective in themselves, we simply MUST investigate further to keep our families safe! Education is power when it comes to health and sustainability.


WILLIAM: We all want these things to be easier, but when it gets right down to it, taking a couple of extra minutes to read labels while shopping isn’t so hard. Just like it makes sense to strive for fitness daily. Hey, are you still doing the Piedmont Park Conservancy fitness programs these days?


PATRICK: Yes, they have some great things happening at the park. Check out this link for some of the activities using the park as the backdrop. Our readers can even make it a weekend thing, if their schedules allows, by taking a brisk walk at the park and then attending the Piedmont Park “Green Market” we mentioned in Episode  5. I’m so excited that Green Market reopens next month!


Piedmont Park Fitness


WILLIAM: Great idea! You could also incorporate a few other activities. Perhaps start at Atlanta Botanical Garden for glimpses at the best of flora and fauna, take the walk around the park, hit the Green Market and then do like the Trappist Monks do and head out for a nice chilly craft beer!


PATRICK: I like the way you think, Agent N.!


WILLIAM: All this talk of food labels and lies has reminded me of something…remind me to tell you about my “chemically addicted poultry”. No, I’m not kidding!


To be continued…



What sustainability considerations factor into your exercise routine? Share with us in the comments section how you think Atlantans could make their workouts and exercise programs more sustainability minded.


Join us next week when Special Agents Patrick Cuccaro and William Neal explore…there’s no easy way to say this…when they explore “chicken on drugs!”



This week’s 3Rs…


What is Revealed?


REVEALED: Fitness Program at Piedmont Park





What is Revered?


REVERED: Atlanta Farmers Markets





What is Reviled?


REVILED: Date Label Confusion






Special Agent
Patrick Cuccaro
UNIT: Legacy Green
Affairs to Remember Caterers
Special Agent Patrick Cuccaro possesses an analytical mind and keen intellect. As Past Chair of the Georgia Restaurant Association (2012)—representing more than 4,000 restaurants and 100,000 employees—he casts a studied eye towards one of the country’s largest creators of waste—the food industry. Armed with a vision for…[more]

Special Agent
William Neal
UNIT: Legacy Green
Affairs to Remember Caterers
Agent William Neal is a hardened professional in the culinary industry. Well…maybe not hardened, since his favorite quip is “Never trust a skinny chef!” Agent Neal has held some interesting posts throughout his career. Starting as a chef, he became a…[more]

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