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Old 01-30-2017, 02:45 PM
TSBG TSBG is offline
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 1,783
Originally Posted by MrDibble View Post
One other way the medieval diet was probably a little healthier - all the meatless days in the Catholic calendar. More fish in the diet as a consequence.

I disagree. Largely, this is because they ate many things we wouldn't consider worth eating - so, for instance, not only chickens and ducks, but any songbird was fair game. And not just iceberg lettuce, but any reasonably palatable green. Very few of us still eat the green tops of our carrots, for instance. They did. And sure, they may only have had wrinkly apples and no cold-stored kiwifruit - but they had dozens of varieties of apple, we generally have 3 or 4 in any supermarket. Obviously, this doesn't apply in times of famine. But ordinarily, there would have been quite a variety. Sure, we have refrigeration and the like, but for most people, that just means year-round bananas, not a diversity of fruits.
Well, people really ought to eat carrot greens--they are delicious and healthy--but it's not true that the only alternative is iceberg. Perhaps you've noticed, for example, the vogue for kale? And my local Trader Joe's carries at least 5-6 varieties of apple, often more. (And there is still regional diversity by the way--you can't find Macintosh or Empire apples in CA. Maybe at a Whole Paycheck.)

Also, I don't think that eating songbirds is an indication of how great the choices were. If you were a noble, eating lark's tongues was a delicacy. For a peasant, eating a lark was a sign that you didn't have better, more calorie-rich choices--maybe because you already ate your chicken and ducks had gone south.