For me, no Fourth of July holiday is complete without hotdogs cooked on the grill. I think they are as essential as fireworks to get in the spirit of things. So I was distressed to read this story in The New York Times detailing all the evil things that go into hot dogs.
To be honest, I knew much of this already but had chosen to ignore it. I did a story last year in which I had to interview about a dozen nutrition superstars about the foods on their forbidden list. There were some variations, but everyone said hot dogs were taboo.
That didn't stop me then, but now I am beginning to wonder. As you get older, you no longer have the luxury of being in denial about the effect of bad health habits. If you eat the wrong things and don't get enough exercise, you will pay for it one way or another.
The Times quotes food experts who say that even hot dogs labeled "natural" or organic contain just as high a dose of cancer-linked preservatives as your basic frank.
So what to do? As I write this, I'm getting ready for a picnic and still not sure whether to stick with the traditional hot dog or make this Fourth of July the start of my independence from bad stuff.
What are your thoughts?