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I’ve wondered why my grandparents lived so long. At 102 years of age, they both are healthy and strong. They don’t use medications or pay regular visits to the hospital. So I asked granny, “What is your secret” She answered “Omoefe, I run away from seasoning, the weapons of mass destruction”

I was taken aback by this reply as I was hoping she would school me on the health benefits of herbs and roots as she does always. “Seasoning Omoefe” she said again. I was shocked- How on earth does one run away from seasonings here in Naij when every thing one cooks, one must add seasoning for better taste???

She knew I was somewhat confused and then she said “Don’t be confused, life without seasoning is not that difficult. In fact, a woman that can make a delicious pot of stew without seasonings is a woman who should be respected greatly by her fellow women. In my days as a youth, my mother taught me how the oyinbo man has introduced chemicals to Africa. Everything we do and eat must have some form of chemical in them.”

I agreed. The manufacturing, packaging and preserving processes of all these products we ingest into our systems must be achieved with chemicals. Indeed all these processes involve high chemical reactions and metabolisms which in the long run is injurious to health. Little wonder the number cases of liver and kidney failure keep increasing year in year out. All these little things we count as insignificant will in the long run matter.

“How then do I cook my soup to be as delicious as yours grandma?” I asked again. She brought out one of her ceramic vases I loved and showed it to me- salt. “This is the spice of life. Promise me you will run from those weapons of mass destruction and just stick to this.” I nodded my head. I’m not sure if this is going to work. But I’m pretty excited to try.

 

Written by Efe Ohworakpo

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