The Fresh Loaf

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Weight Watchers demonisation of bread

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rozeboosje's picture
rozeboosje

Weight Watchers demonisation of bread

One of the things that really gets my goat is how Weight Watchers demonises bread. Participants are discouraged from eating bread and a slice of bread is rated a ludicrous number of "points", also with the aim to discourage people from eating it. In the meantime, people are told they can eat equivalent portions of rice, pasta, potatoes and other starchy foods.

This is absurd. My family are eating sourdough bread, and because it's tasty we tend to, well, overindulge a little bit and maybe have the odd extra slice. Just because it's yum. Right? And yet, here we are. If we don't eat other processed rubbish, eating sourdough bread seems to have no ill effect and we are in fact all losing weight. Happy days.

 

Of course it's understandable why WW may be doing this. Just look at a slice of commercial, mass produced bread. Made with inferior ingredients the lack of genuine flavour is compensated for by liberal additions of sugar, fats and other bread "enhancers". No wonder a slice of "wonderbread" should be rated a gazillion points. But why can't WW make that distinction, then? They're happy enough to make distinctions between "plain" and "wholewheat" pasta, or "white" and "brown" rice, so why not make a similar distinction between a slice of crappy mass produced "bread" and one of sourdough goodness, and encourage people to learn to bake and produce the latter so they don't have to rely on the former?

 

Here. Rant over. I feel better now.

MisterTT's picture
MisterTT

is the first time I'm hearing about WeightWatchers and for me WW always just stands for whole wheat :)

rozeboosje's picture
rozeboosje

Lucky lucky LUCKY man :P

hanseata's picture
hanseata

I downloaded the nice little weight loss app "Lose It", to get rid of some holiday surplus. It works really well - you enter your foods, and they show a number of options you can choose from. For a slice of my white French type bread I looked for options: 1 medium slice bread, French = 185 cal!

I then made the effort to add up the calories in my home made bread: 117. Quite a difference.

All these weight loss programs take into account store bought and restaurant foods, not home made. At least my little app lets me create own foods, or recipes where I can enter the calories and nutrients myself. Weight Watchers obviously doesn't have that option.

Karin

rozeboosje's picture
rozeboosje

Exactly, Karin. The difference is astonishing. Especially on the smaller portions it can quickly add up, as shop bought bread would have 50% more calories, and with WW not doing half "pro points" that could be the difference between 1 point or 2.

Bakingmadtoo's picture
Bakingmadtoo

I fail to see how a slice of home baked bread could possibly have very many calories, after all, the only calories in a slice of mine come from flour, considering the high percentage of water in my dough, it really can't be that bad. 

Karin, it is interesting to hear what your comparable slice worked out at.

It is what people eat with bread that makes them fat, the butter, cheese, mayo, peanut butter, jelly or jam and the meat. A few hundred years ago people were eating two to three pounds of bread a day and there was no obesity epidemic.  I know that was probably all people ate in a day, with a few vegetables to supplement and a small amount of meat, still it is an incredible amount of bread. Of course, they also moved a lot more which would certainly help many people. 

However, I would not want to waste a single calorie on store bought bread myself. I haven't eaten pre packed sliced bread for more years than I can remember, it has always tasted of some foul chemical flavour and  has a smell that makes me wretch when I open the bag.

I guess it is hard for organisations like WW to account for every possible variation.

dosco's picture
dosco

Just bear in mind that food availability was a problem up until 50-100 years ago (at least in the United States). Before then people ate far less food simply because there wasn't enough for or there wasn't any food to be had. For us 1st worlders who have been raised in a food saturated environment It can be hard to remember this. A good reason to see foreign lands - puts things into perspective.

The obesity epidemic is the result of our ceaseless efforts to ensure food security ... the irony is that it is killing us.

Regards-
Dave

 

Bakingmadtoo's picture
Bakingmadtoo

Hmm, no intent to call it the good old days! I am sure it was dreadful, and much of the bread they ate was contaminated with other things. It was just an observation that eating even large amounts of bread did not make them fat.

As you say, the quest for food security, does indeed have much to do with the obesity problem. I think on the news the other day they said it will not be long before one in three of the world's population are obese. The awful thing is that if you add those to those who are starving and malnourished, there will be hardly any 'normal' weight people left. The majority of people around the globe will be struggling with health problems from either too much or too little, which is incredibly sad when our earth actually produces enough for us all.

rozeboosje's picture
rozeboosje

Doesn't it just... [shudder]. I guess it can't be helped if you need to mass produce something that then needs to be able to sit on a shelf for 3 days and still be ... well, let's say ... "edible" ... for a week after. But even without that I was astonished to learn that a slice of commercial bread - ONE slice - could contain as much as 3 grams of sugar. Like... WHAT?

Kbone's picture
Kbone

While bread is certainly near the top of the list of food items that many weight-conscious people tend to avoid the idea that carbohydrates in general are bad for you seems to permeate the thinking of many.

It's very important to understand that not all carbohydrates are created equal. Carbohydrates can be complex or simple. Those obtained from foods in their natural or near-natural state such as whole grains tend to be far less of a catalyst for weight gain than those from processed foods that tend to be simple sugars. In addition to this, the fiber in whole grains/foods also tends to slow the absorbtion of sugars into the blood stream so that they are more likely to give you sustained blood sugar/energy levels vs. a surge in glucose that triggers a higher insulin response.

Probably about 70% of the calories in my diet come from carbohydrates. I'm 52 years old, 6'2" tall and weigh 142 lbs. I'm in superb health. I am also a vegan and I try to consume whole foods as much as I can and avoid refined and processed foods. I use very nearly 100% whole grain in my breads and include barley, rye, spelt, wheat, oats, etc.

The excellent book The China Study by T. Colin Campbell delves into the contribution that animal foods (not just the fats by the way but to a great degree the proteins) make to the obesity epidemic as well as the tendency towards the major "diseases of affluence" so common in the western world (diabetes, heart disease, cancer, etc.). The high-protein/low carbohydrate craze that has long gripped so many tends to lead people to higher and higher consumption of animal products rather than a whole food plant-based diet. This trend is very much to the detriment of people's health.

dosco's picture
dosco

The reason to eliminate or reduce carbohydrates when dieting is simply to blunt one's appetite in order to support the "eat less and exercise more" actions which are required for weight loss. Eating less and exercising more is hard, and reducing food intake tends to result in making one focus on "being hungry all the time." Nothing more or less, although it seems to work more for some than others. It so happens that I think more clearly and generally feel more energetic when I reduce my carbohydrate intake, with that said I have no problems eating carbohydrates in moderation.

The problem is that humans tend to oversimplify things, so that LOW CARBZ ARE TEH BOMBZZZORZZZ 1100001111!!!! when in fact that "what is good to eat" and "what is not so good to eat" has been fairly well established for a long time. Humans are also easily fooled/suckered into stupid things, which tends to compound the effects of oversimplifying.

To be honest I would really like to hear less about how "processed foods are toxic and making people obese" when in fact it is mostly a function of 1) too much food availability, and 2) people becoming more sedentary.

 

clazar123's picture
clazar123

Even moderation, sometimes.

The simple fact has already been stated-too many calories and too little activity= weight gain.

Where it gets complicated is the rest of the story-how we deal with huge availability and access, where we eat, portion size, emotional eating, cars, not recognizing body cues when we are thirsty or hungry, the need for instant gratification, our culture of food, etc. Weight Watchers and similar programs can be very good at helping a person sort out those issues and learning how to eat anything you want without it eating you.

As for vegan/meat eating-both are in the range of what the human body is designed to use as fuel and you can be healthy either way. Attitude, moderation and balance of ALL nutrients is probably the "healthiest" way to eat. There is no ONE right way to eat or live.

rozeboosje's picture
rozeboosje

Hear hear!

 

ElPanadero's picture
ElPanadero

Sadly we live in a world run by corporations and conglomorates who have the world's governments on a string. Obesity, I believe, is not about people eating cream cakes, or bread, or any specific food item.  It's caused by bad things that these conglomorates are putting in our foods and drinks and which they subsequently hide and conceal by controlling the food labelling laws.  Add in control of the main supposed food safety organisations like the FDA, WHO etc and our "lot" is not a happy one.  One of THE primary culprits for people's decline into obesity and bad health is good old . . . sugar.  Our ruling elite have seen to it that increasing amounts of it are in almost everything these days.  In fact if they were to remove all supermarket products containing sugar and we walked in, I think we would be staggered at how little produce there would be left.   Sugar reportedly:

  • can lead to autoimmune disorders like arthritis, asthma, and multiple sclerosis
  • is the number one cause of weight gain/obesity
  • leads to the chronic acidity of saliva leading to rampant tooth decay
  • completely disrupts the absorption minerals in the body. Which in turn leads to a whole array of different health issues.
  • impairs the structure of your DNA.
  • contributes largely to hormonal issues.
  • induces cell death
  • causes premature aging. Literally changing the healthful structure of the skin.
  • fuels the growth of cancer cells

It is highly addictive and displays many of the characteristics of a Class A drug.  Yet somehow this killer has become socially acceptable.

Diets, don't work.  They never will because by sheer definition, a "diet" as such is a pattern of eating that is different to your normal day to day pattern of eating.  A diet may have a temporary effect but as it is a "diet", then when it ends, and normal day to day eating resumes, your body reverts back, sometimes even worse than before.  We must establish a NEW day to day pattern of eating to effect a real permanant change, not a diet.

Bread is not an enemy.  Our ancestors ate it for 1000s years quite happily.  Sadly however those ruling conglomorates have done their best to corrupt it.  Years ago there was a plethora of really nutritional grains but they didn't lend themselves to the requirements of the new abysmal fast bread producion factories who want to force rise bread in an hour rather than a day.  So they produced grains of much less nutritional value that would suit this production and that in turn put pressure on grain growers.  There was less money in good wholesome ancient grains, the demand was all for today's 'quick buck' grain.  It's a sorry story.  Whether people can create enough demand for good grains again is still to be seen.  I truly hope so, but whilever the masses flock to buy the soggy, malnutricious and possibly health harmful excuse for bread in supermarkets, then we'll be stuck for some time.  People need to know the truth of what's in that bread but, like the truth about sugar, it's not an easy truth to get out there.  So in the end we must each seek to educate ourselves as best we can from our own research about all the food we eat, and about natural things that can heal us. 

Personally I don't like these "slimming clubs".  In all their guises they are offering a "diet", a temporary system of calorie counting, point counting, classification of reds and greens and so on.  What use is counting calories if we can't rely on the labels of foods and know what is really in them?  I believe we can do far more benefit to our health by first, stop believing that our peers, governments and health organisations are there to protect us, by second determining to take responsibility for our own food education and medicine education and by third acting on that education.

Bread per say is a good thing but the truth is all in the definition.  Tea is also supposed to be very healthy but that doesn't refer to the crap we get in tea bags at a supermarket.  It means real tea.  Equally we need real bread made with really good grains.  Much of the fast production bread is not good and in many cases may be  quite harmful with its chemicals and additives and I don't believe for a second the labelling is telling us the whole truth about what's in there.

Some years ago I determined to give up sugar and sweeteners.  I only eat sugar now when I have a cake or biscuit.  Definitely no sweeteners, no foods containing sweeteners, no drinks containing sweeteners.  I never drink fizzy pop.   When I did this I lost weight quickly and naturally and effortlessly.  Didn't matter really what I ate, and indeed I was still eating plenty of breads and chips and some take-aways back then, but the absense of sugar had a hugely positive effect.   IMO removal of sugar from your diet should the first step for anyone wanting to lose weight.  If you are going to weight loss clubs and still eating sugar imo you're wasting your time (and money!).

Anyway, that's a bit of a rant and I apologise for the long post.

Let's have more real bread and let's encourage the growing of good ancient grains and create demand for breads and other products made with them.

EP

rozeboosje's picture
rozeboosje

People need to get out of the mindset that a busy lifestyle means that you cannot "afford" to spend time on home cooking. Some very healthy home cooked meals can be produced as quickly as it would take you to drive back and forth to the local take-away.

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

Sadly we live in a world run by corporations and conglomorates who have the world's governments on a string. Obesity, I believe, is not about people eating cream cakes, or bread, or any specific food item.  It's caused by bad things that these conglomorates are putting in our foods and drinks and which they subsequently hide and conceal by controlling the food labelling laws.  Add in control of the main supposed food safety organisations like the FDA, WHO etc and our "lot" is not a happy one.  One of THE primary culprits for people's decline into obesity and bad health is good old . . . sugar.  Our ruling elite have seen to it that increasing amounts of it are in almost everything these days.  In fact if they were to remove all supermarket products containing sugar and we walked in, I think we would be staggered at how little produce there would be left.   Sugar reportedly:'

I say it is great that we love in a world where people, on there own volition using their free will, can, and do, eat what ever they want to eat and are free to do so.  What is sad is that there are plenty of healthy choices out there to eat in every food category but people don't choose them for what ever reason they seem to have.

Scapegoating companies and governments because people have a free will to choose poorly, from a wide range of healthier choices available, smacks of  something else though.

When the company that made Twinkies, Ho Ho;s and Hostess Cupcakes went bankrupt you would have thought that the world had ended. MCDonald's has salads, fruits and fish sandwiches but no one buys them - does that make McDonald' evil?  Coke has sugar free drinks but many won't buy them - is that Coke's fault?

None of the products and companies you seem to despise ever made one person fat - not ever.  You can pile their product up on a table and not one will jump off of it and force their way down anyone's throat - not one.  But, folks just can't seem to walk by the table without personally loading up on them can they?

The reasons people that people have been, are and will be fat, are always the same and not one of them has to do with companies, governments or food products of any kind.  What is lacking in most every case is the personal responsibility to choose food wisely, eat a well balanced diet that is sized to match one's  personal activity level.

There is someone to blame and it is ...the fat, unhealthy person who chooses food quantity and quality poorly and suffers the consequence.  I used to be fat and it was all my fault and no one else's.   Lacking discipleine is a charatar flaw and nothing more.  Scapegoating the innocent solves nothing.

That is my take and one much different than yours.  Thankfully we still live in a place where people can agree to disagree and are free to have their own opinions - no matter how wrong yours and mine are:-)

rozeboosje's picture
rozeboosje

Obviously I would agree that responsible adults could and should be held responsible for their own choices. But it's not really as clear cut as you put it there.

You say "[you] used to be fat and it was all [your] fault". But at what point did you decide that "enough was enough", and what did it take for you to change your chosen path to a healthier one? I bet it wasn't easy. You had to put in time and effort to find out how to eat healthily; the information, while not exactly kept secret or inaccessible would require you to actively go looking for it. When I was growing up we didn't get information about healthy eating in school. TV tends to feed you with "entertainment" at prime time, with programmes about how to lead a healthier lifestyle tucked away in timeslots where only the dedicated would bother to go looking for them. Many people grow up believing in the myth that cooking is "difficult" and "time consuming", and in a world in which the "easy" fast food option is constantly presented as a real alternative to the "drudgery" of cooking.

I don't think the big corporations are The Devil and that they deliberately set out to make people unhealthy, overweight, and too stupid to make their own meals, but they are not exactly helping either. McDonalds only started providing those "healthy" options after pressure was applied, and you only need to look at a McDonalds "salad" or "fruit" option to see why people aren't really buying into it. Sorry, but a sliced apple that's been sitting on a shelf for 6 hours wouldn't be my idea of a "healthy snack"... Thankfully I only darken that establishment's door under duress, and on average once ever two years. And then I'll have a milkshake. Which I drink through clenched teeth. LOL

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

or your post but I appreciate the comments.  I had a different educational experience when growing up and was taught all the doo's and don'ts when it came to food, the food pyramid, what was good and bad for you and proper calorie and portion control.  I just chose to ignore it like it didn't exis:-)

No question about it the food police made fast food companies change their menus but sadly no one ever bought the salad and fruits.  It seems that the food police were protecting a very small group of people who really don't exist in large enough quantities to make healthy food profitable.  I mean would order salad and fruit in a burger, pizza or Mexican chain anyway.  Since I go to these places less than once every couple of years I order the burger pizza or burrito instead.  If I want salad and fruit I would go to a place that has good ones - but most people don't like those places either :-)  But they love Mickey D's, Pizza Hut and Taco Belle.

Don't feel bad about the milkshake - no need to drink it through clenched teeth of you only get 2 a year.  I get one every time i go and just love it - as i do all desserts.

I got serious about eating right and exercising when my Doc wanted to put me on insulin a few years ago.  Found everything i needed on the Internet pretty easy and a quick talk with the Doc was all that I needed to start walking 4 miles a day, cut down on the size of the shovel feeding my face and eating fresh veggies, salad and meats.  The eating right and exercising is all over the web, right out front and easy to find.  The hard part was stopping going out to eat where the portions are large and ingredients very bad for you.  Any normal restaurant has way more calories on the plate then McDonald's - and really bad ones too.

Now i try to eat as healthy and well as anyone can while trying to match intake with exercise.  70 pounds later -no worries and no meds.  Now I want to live forever - a much harder task:-)

Happy eating!

.

ElPanadero's picture
ElPanadero

Without a doubt, there is a contingent of people who, as you say, do not bother to think about what they are eating, eat whatever they like and as a result have poor diet, get fat and are probably lacking nutrition. 

However you also said:

"What is lacking in most every case is the personal responsibility to choose food wisely"

The thing here is, to choose food wisely there needs to be both a level of education of the individual and a fairly ruthless system of food labelling to enable individuals to make the right choices.  Labelling is a key issue.  For example, there are some good articles on the net showing the true horrific effects of some GM foods on mice, who are full of lumps and tumours as a result of GM tests.  Europe is up in arms about it at the moment, some parties saying humans are being used as guinea pigs for something that is wholly untested.  By choice, and education, you might choose not to eat GM foods.  In the UK, the laws state that all GM foods must be clearly labelled as such.  In the USA it's a different story.  So if the labelling isn't truthful or clear about what's in something, or if it is deliberately misleading then what actual free choice do people have?

You say "Coke has sugar free drinks but many won't buy them - is that Coke's fault?"

But billions of people DO buy them and as a result are loaded full of either sugars or massive doses of sweeteners neither of which are healthy.  These are products labelled and marketed as drinks that will quench your thirst and be lip smackingly good.  In reality they are cans of liquid that will seriously . . . .mess .. with your body's systems which will then impact everything else you eat as well as impacting how you feel, how your body stimulates the feeling of hunger and so on.  Are they labelled as such?  Nope.

Cigarettes are massively harmful and it took many many years to get fag packets labelled with horrible warnings.  People still smoke of course, but that IS free choice.  Years ago many didn't really believe cigarettes were that harmful.   The labelling now makes it clear.  Sugar is akin to a class A drug, but like cigarettes it has been marketed and made socially acceptable.  Some time in the future I'm sure that will all change.  For now, the sugar conglomorates rake in the money and make hay while they have influence and control.  Same for the salt producers. 

In the end I do share some of your views, but I don't see it in the same brutal black and white terms.  I view the situation much like drug pushers only these drug pushers are doing it legally right under our noses.  They are putting out products that are addictive, which alter the metabolism and digestion mechanisms and which mess with the body's hunger triggers and people's emotions. None of which is in the labelling.  Once they have someone hooked on their "drug", it becomes more difficult for that person to break away.  At that point it's not just about simple personal choice of foods.  It is something else.

"None of the products and companies you seem to despise ever made one person fat - not ever"

I disagree.  The companies selling energy drinks and fizzy pop are making people fat.  Their products have unwanted effects on the body and none of those are stated in the labelling.  The ingredients may be there, in all their subtle and often misleading guises, but the warnings are not.  Do any of the youngsters drinking this stuff know for example what a good dose of Taurine will do? Is that stated anywhere? Like cigarettes used to be, these products are in their infancy but in time they will have to come with health warnings.  

Conversely let's take something quite different.  Bitter Apricot Kernels.  One of many natural foods that contain cyanide compounds like amgydalin for which research many years ago demonstrated significant efficacy against cancer.  In this world of so called free choice, are apricot kernels free to be sold with no health warnings about cyanide compounds just as energy drinks are sold without any similar labelling?  The answer turns out to be yes and no.  In the USA, no.  In the USA the powers that be have seen to it that this really useful natural anti-carcinigenic food is taken off the shelves.  Big well known suppliers of health foods like Julian Graves have been forced to stop selling them.  In the UK, for now, thankfully people can still buy these, but for how long I don't know.  How is it then that products laden with sugars, sweeteners, substances like taurine, chemicals, and so on, can be freely marketed without any health warnings when they are very bad for our health, and yet apricot kernels, which could significantly aid many cancer sufferers, can't even be sold now in parts of the USA?  Free choice?  No, I don't think so.  Our choices are very much controlled and the information released about food and drinks equally controlled. 

When I see an obese person I don't think to myself "you greedy person, look what you've done to yourself eating all that crap food".  I think "this person is likely caught in a vicious cycle of responding to hunger triggers which their body is producing falsely which in turn are caused by the inadvertent digestion of harmful substances in foods and drink that had no warnings".  For sure they are making some poor food choices, but the true underlying culprits are getting away largey scott free . . . for now!

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

First off we have been educating people for decades now about what is healthy and unhealthy to eat - it is not a secret nor hard to come by. For what ever reason people have for ignoring these food facts, this is not the issue.  Like me, people just choose to ignore them and eat what ever they want ,when ever they want, where ever they want in quantities they want.

GM food products are not the issue either.  Without them billions of people would have dies the world over.   I want no [part inj killing billions.  People are not up in arms about it.  The few food police and their tiny following are but no one is marching in the streets demanding anything about food of any kind.  GM foods have to date been a real blessings to society's poor and why the Nobel prize is given to food geneticists like Borland.  No GMO food has ever harmed a person to date but billions have benefitted greatly

I'm glad you agree with me that even though there are healthier options available from Coke, people who know they shouldn't consume massive quantities of sugared soda  still buy the one with a ton of sugar and choose not to follow the serving size per day that is clearly on the label.  Nothing is hidden and all the facts are known and taught to anyone who wants to know but folks freely choose to not follow the healthy advice and portion sized told to them on the label.

There is nothing wrong with the label but there sure is something wrong with the people who do or don't read it.   Sugar and its substitutes are not harmful in the quantities that the government says are safe, have been tested over and over again to prove it and appear on every label.  If people chose to ignore the amounts listed and consume massive quantities of either, they know it is bad for them but choose to ignore the warnings by their own free will.  Same for cigarette smokers, or heroin shooters or bank robbers for that matter.

Everyone knows it is wrong.  It'snot a hidden secret and they and has been told over and over again, but folks freely choose to do otherwise - even if illegal like robbing banks.  Why they ignore the warnings and laws is not the issue - but their poor choices and actions that arise from them, despite every effort made to stop them, tell the truth.   They have personally decided to do otherwise, despite the consequences, for their own reasons - what ever they are. 

I've never heard of bitter apricot kernels and suspect few have ....and assume that even fewer people now if they are good or bad but I do suspect they couldn't care less either way since few eat them n- seems a way out n the limb stretch to me.  I do know i don't and couldn't care less if some fool does eat them though.  If you were talking peanut butter then I'm sure everyone would know everything about it and they would choose to eat it if they wanted to - regardless of the label and warning or lack of it, on it.

"When I see an obese person I don't think to myself "you greedy person, look what you've done to yourself eating all that crap food".

Who the heck would ever do that?  I, for one, know that I couldn't care less if they are fat or not, or why they are fat, or what excuses they and others make for their poor personal choices and eating too much food.  I just know they obviously eat too much and it isn't my problem.  Until they accept the problem as being theirs and theirs only, take the required steps to back away from the feed bag a fair and decent distance, be honest and decent with themselves and consume much, much less food, they won't be riding high in the saddle over the next mountain pass any time soon - and weight loss will elude them until they do.

I got fat eating the best food available by the way and never ever ate crap. - but i also remember eating an awful  lot of it not to mention the Guinnes.  Crap food for you is probably nothing more than being the food poor people can afford to buy and enjoy eating at fast food restaurants, nothing more, they eat too much of it and get fat too.

I will be happy to help them in their weight loss quest but I also won't; make excused for them either no matter how good ,if strange, they sound.....like their being caught in a viscous cycle of hunger triggers cause by their inadvertent consumption of harmful substances in the food they eat.  The world is full of misplaced compassion that gets in the way of solving all kinds of problems.  Still, I couln't care less what others think or do as long as they don't affect me with their poor choicesand actions.

That doesn't mean I don't care about their plight, what ever it is - who wouldn't?  But would rather have a world where people can act and choose freely to live any way they wish within legal limits.  Ones not imposed on them by those who are supposedly wiser and who think they have to poke their noses into someone else business without being asked, for no good reason, with bad consequence.  Life will dole out to everyone the consequences they willingly ask for and deserve. 

The one thing all laws and rules have in common is that they protect the rights of some while taking away the rights of everyone else.   We all have the equal right to the same opportunity but not the same equal outcome that these laws try to force on everyone - equally. 

All the good laws were created by society long ago.  Most of the ones passed today are largely bad ones because all the good ones were taken long ago so they have to be bad - such is progress:-)   Still, some people will try to save everyone from everything no matter what - while killing the rest of the responsible innocent who just want to be left alone and freed from such nonsense so they can act on their right to forge heir own brand of happiness unimpeded by the harmful affects, nonsense and nuisance of others.

Nice to have this conversation with you.

ElPanadero's picture
ElPanadero

So much to address in your last post I would be in danger of swamping this thread.  Instead I will save any rhetoric and stump up the links to articles that provide information about all of this.

First, a Daily Mail article with some horrific images of mice (not for the squeemish!)
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2205509/Cancer-row-GM-foods-French-study-claims-did-THIS-rats--cause-organ-damage-early-death-humans.html

Ok, this is journalism and they love a sensational story.  So here's a more serious article from Scientific American no less:

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/rat-study-sparks-furor-over-genetically-modified-foods/

and another here:

http://www.alternet.org/hot-news-views/what-make-scary-gmo-study

What I conclude from these is that there are as yet no definitive conclusions EXCEPT that it is clear to anyone with a rational mind that not enough testing has yet been done in relation to GM foods, and yet . . . people are already eating them, many without knowing it.

Which brings us nicely back to my personal bugbear of labelling scams and the removal of personal choice by our governments through their refusal to label certain things.  

The article below outlines most of the views concerning the labeling of GM Foods.  It explains why those FOR proper labelling want it and also gives the excuses of those who are AGAINST it.

http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/foodnut/09371.html

The next article shows you the current state of play of GM labelling in different countries across the world.  If you live in the USA or Canada you have my extreme sympathies.  A key life choice is being taken from you through the refusal of the powers that be to enforce proper labelling of GM foods.  Given that nowhere near enough research has yet been done to determine the long term effects of GM foods, a game of Russian Roulette is being played out in the USA and Canada and it's citizens are the ones with the gun pointing at their heads.

http://www.labelgmos.org/the_science_genetically_modified_foods_gmo

Of course it's all about enormous sums of money.  It always is.  A conglomorate called Monsanto is at the heart of it all and owns the patent for the GM modified grains. Here are some articles about the effects this company has had on local grain farming and some of the high level law suits that have been going on.

http://www.corpwatch.org/article.php?id=15825

http://www.grain.org/article/entries/170-monsanto-moves-to-tighten-its-control-over-latin-america

We have already very sadly, lost countless ancient grains of great nutritional quality which served the Romans and other civilisations well for 1000s of years.  Monetary greed and corporations have seen to it that the majority of grains now grown are those geared for the fast production industry.   The advent of GM grains and other crops will soon leave us in a situation where we become totally reliant on a patented charegable set of grains.  Companies like Monsanto will have total control.  Intellectual rights on all the grains, thus control of grain pricing and usage. Our food choices will become few as a result.  "Soylent Green" anyone?

That's enough I think on GM.

On the issue of Apricot Kernels your comments there saddened me somewhat.  You first state that you haven't heard of them and then go on to say " I do know i don't and couldn't care less if some fool does eat them though"

That doesn't sound like an open mind or rational response.  It is not foolish to eat Apricot Kernels IF they have strong efficacy against cancer.  To determine whether they do have any efficacy you would need to research, read and look into the related history with an open mind.  In doing so I can tell you from the outset that you will come up against all manner of "scare stories" aimed at the easily swayed, emphasising that apricot kernels contain cyanide and that you will die eating them.  In fact they contain a cyanide compound just as bitter almonds, cherries and many other natural foods do.  You will no more die of cyanide poisoning that you will spontaneously explode if you drink water, it having all that Hydrogen in it an' all!  Of course if you eat too much of anything, then you can easily poison yourself.  Drink too much water and you will equally harm yourself.

The more you read, the more you see a campaign of mis-information to keep this truth from the ignorant masses.  They would much prefer you happily went for alternative "conventional" and expensive treatments that have poor success rates than be able to reach out for something so cheap and natural as fruit seeds and kernels. 

Now . . this topic gets sensitive real quick unfortunately,  but it is what it is.  For all those I meet in life suffering cancer or having friends and family suffering cancer I take time, as much time as is needed, to tell them about Apricot Kernels and to present them with the various articles, for and against so they can have the chance at least to make an informed decision.  For some I even order a supply of kernels for them to make it as easy as possible to try.  I won't force this upon anyone, nor give anyone any false hope of a cure, I will simply make them aware of something which as you rightly said, most people are completely oblivious to.  I have eaten Apricot Kernels myself (which in itself takes a leap of faith!).  I didn't die you'll be pleased to hear!  :-)

All the very best

EP

dosco's picture
dosco

Errrr ... you've watched Soylent Green, yes?

Cheers-
Dave

ElPanadero's picture
ElPanadero

Wasn't inferring that we'd be turning cannibal :-)  Merely that one giant corporation (or a very few corporations) will hold the control of a key element of our food chain.  That's all.

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

to be more complete, that I don't care if some fool eats them or doesn't eat them for what ever reason they choose to do or not do so - I couldn't care less -  I'm a libertarian and more open minded than most anyone on the left or right because I say nearly everything should be allowed so long as no one else gets hurt.  No one should ban anyone from eating or not eating anything in proper amounts that won't kill them.

If some folks want to label GMO's as genetically modified then I say fine fine because they are genetically modified, but they are not unhealthy in any way or stretch of the imagination, just like sugar and artificial sweeteners are not harmful in proper amounts and should not be labeled as harmful.  Labeling them harmful would not be true and..... that is what should be banned

When folks want to ban GMO's just because they personally don't like them or don't fit their personal agenda, they are just plain wrong and are trying to impose their extreme views on others who can't afford it.   In the case of GMO's, those wanting to ban them might have a different view if their actions were considered by society as genocide against a billion or so of the poorest people on earth ...and that they would be tried as mass murderers for trying to starve the poor to death.  That is how wrong they are....Now if GMO foods start killing folks then those responsible for approving and allowing them into the marketplace will face the proper consequences too.

Corn and rice are almost entirely GMO in many parts of the developing world have been for a very long time and in the developed world too.  No one has died and it is very unlikely since the poor folks in the world have much better nutrition and diet today today then ever before and their death rates have declined dramatically - mostly due to the abundance of GMO foods, better food handling , better water supplies, availability of cheap electricity to store food and better health care and pharmaceuticals in general- all made possible with the generosity and new technology made available by the developed world.  Billions are alive today because of of it and these poor people  are living much better and longer but, there is still so much to do the world over.   

For the rich of the world there are all kinds of other options available to get what ever they want, non GMO food, sustainable energy, electric cars, no sugar, no sugar substitutes and fat free foods to name just a few.   The list is endless for the rich,  but the poor have few if any options.  They need coal for electricity, gasoline for cars, sugar for soda and fat in foods. 

My advice to rich people is, don't become an extremist and protect the rights of poor people and the minority.  Folks that that live in the developed world especially the west, are rich indeed - in every way..

Monsanto has the right to protect their intellectual property and develop new food products that are not harmful - by any legal means necessary.  97% of plant species that have existed on earth are now extinct by some estimates as is the truth of past science theory and supposed fact that was proven wrong by later scientists.

Cheers

Nim's picture
Nim

Very well put...and I agree with every word.

David Esq.'s picture
David Esq.

On any weight watcher's product and you will fast realize that it is a company that does not have your interests at heart. Nor is it a company that cares about healthy eating. 

rozeboosje's picture
rozeboosje

But compare the Weight Watchers branded items in your supermarket with other brands - and not even always their "low fat" variations, and I can only conclude that people are being taken for a ride.

clazar123's picture
clazar123

Like any consumerism, you have to understand what you are buying. WtWatchers is not a total demon here. They offer a lot of support for people who need it. But people need to take the information and use what works for them and disregard the rest. HEALTH is a  lifestyle that involves choices on a daily basis. Eating-what to eat, when, where. and how much is part of that. Being a healthy consumer and making healthy choices for ourselves is also part of that. 

 As for WW products, they are the same as any service business-the products have the greatest profit margin. Their products reflect the usual products available by popular demand or they wouldn't be selling them.The food industry in the US is so vast and there are SO many choices. So be a good consumer and make choices that work for you. If enough consumers make the same choices, the industry will follow the lead to make product to sell to those consumers.

I agree with the statement that take-away food is not necessary but how to cook even simple foods is becoming a forgotten art in some areas. And people have accepted the fallacy that a busy lifestyle means they have to forgo home food prep. I think they need to take a lesson from the fast food industry and make their own "fast food" at home. Soup-10 minutes, noodle dish with fresh or frozen veggies-10 minutes, meat roasts-cook while you are at work in a crockpot, wraps, Mexican, Chinese, Thai-BBQ-etc,etc. Rachel Ray and Jamie Oliver are great chef examples that have great recipes for "fast food".

I have to put a plug in for Wt Watchers at this time.  I got a lot from their program years ago that still helps me to this day. Every program has its idiosyncracies but they offer a LOT of tools, also. Weight Watchers does promote eating simply as part of their program (or at least they used to). They encouraged whole grains, food with 1 ingredient on the label and very simple prep (bake,boil,add water,etc), and fresh food. They also used to encourage preparing food ahead of time and freezing in portions for a "fast food" meal. They don't deserve to be totally trashed.

rozeboosje's picture
rozeboosje

I think Weight Watchers is to eating healthily what Eckhart Tolle is to living a fulfilled life: a lot of good advice but sadly contaminated with an awful lot of "woo".

clazar123's picture
clazar123

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6UliCMEdTFE

Here are the lyrics:

Listen, big boy,
Now that you got me made,
Goodness, but I'm afraid,
Somethin's gonna happen to you!
Listen, big boy,
You gotta be hooked, and how,
I would die if I should lose you now!

Button up your overcoat,
When the wind is free,
Oh, take good care of yourself,
You belong to me!

Eat an apple every day,
Get to bed by three,
Oh, take good care of yourself,
You belong to me!

Be careful crossing streets, ooh-ooh,
Cut out sweets, ooh-ooh,
Lay off meat, ooh-ooh,
You'll get a pain and ruin your tum-tum!

Wear your flannel underwear,
When you climb a tree,
Oh, take good care of yourself,
You belong to me!

Button up your overcoat,
When the wind is free,
Oh, take good care of yourself,
You belong to me!

When you sass a traffic cop,
Use diplomacy;
Just take good care of yourself,
You belong to me!

Beware of frozen funds, ooh-ooh,
Stocks and bonds, ooh-ooh,
Dockside thugs, ooh-ooh,
You'll get a pain and ruin your bankroll!

Keep the spoon out of your cup,
When you're drinking tea,
Oh, take good care of yourself,
You belong to me!

Don't sit on hornet's tails, ooh-ooh!
Or on nails, ooh-ooh!
Or third rails, ooh-ooh!
You'll get a pain and ruin your tum-tum!

Keep away from bootleg hooch
When you're on a spree,
Oh, take good care of yourself,
You belong to me!

Add song meaning Not sure what to write? See exampleExample Song MeaningsHere is where you can write about what the highlighted lyrics are about and their meaning. An example would be...

"'Post code envy' describe the envious feeling towards the people who can live in expansive area with well known post code (such as 90210 for hollywood)."

You can also add pictures, videos and links to other sites using the links at the top of the box

SUBMITThank You For Your SubmissionYour song meaning will appear once it has been deemed awesome byour team of wizards. Add more meanings to earn more points!

 

clazar123's picture
clazar123

The cut and paste of the lyrics pulled some ads, obviously, even though they weren't highlighted when I copied and now they won't delete even if I delete all the pasted lyrics. Apologies.

rozeboosje's picture
rozeboosje

It's nice!

 

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

by the no stocks and bonds!  Very bad financial advice it is.   You won't have much of a bankroll without them and everyone with a bankroll has them:-)    The rest I can't disagree with much.  The depression really made people think poorly about stocks and bonds,

clazar123's picture
clazar123

It was on a few years ago. He is trying to improve the food available to school kids in school lunch programs. He was trying to educate not only the kids but the parents and the school staff. It was rather remarkable when he found out that many kids could NOT identify half the vegetables he brought to the classroom (mainstream like cucumbers,tomatoes, broccoli) and did not even know that French fries were made from potatoes!  This was in the southern USA where obesity is a well-noted problem. He encountered extreme resistance from the schools and was better received from the parents. I believe he impacted individuals rather than the system. THe system decided (even though he demonstrated they could) that it was cheaper and easier to order processed food.

Health is a lifestyle that requires knowledge and decisions-DAILY. Keep going with that!

rozeboosje's picture
rozeboosje

Yup. I saw that. Jamie can be a bit hit and miss, but on that one he "did good"....

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

He is one of my favorite celebrity chefs and I am glad he is trying to get people to change.  Even the US government tried to change the system recently, (not they the government can ever do anything well especially if it is worth doing), with their new healthy food school meal plan and is finding out what Jamie and McDonald's found out.  . Most kids don't like the food, won't eat it  and all that much more expensive, healthy food is getting thrown in the trash.  Sadly, many schools have now gotten off the plan considering it a failure and have gone back to what kids want to eat.  It also seems that many poor kids were going home hungry and malnourished since school was the only place they got fed - very sad indeed.  But thankfully, success can come from many faliures of the past - hopefully people won't give up trying to change people attitudes for the better.

Many kids didn't grow up anywhere near farms, go shopping for produce or cook meals with it,  No wonder they don't know anything about it - but they could tell us a thing or two about stuff we know nothing about too!   i love those skits on TV where a reporter of some kind goes out on the street, or a university or the beach and asks the folks there questions about current events and hardly anyone can answer the questions correctly.

A now passed mentor once told me that there are in general 3 kinds of people.  The few who make things happen - good or bad, the many who watch the good and bad happen all around them but can't remember it and the few who wonder what what heck happened, don't' know if it was good or bad and, worst of all, don't care.  

But as a libertarian in most things, I don't care what others choose to do, think or know.  It's not my business and they should be free to act independently without any interference from me.  I just don't want anyone else telling me what to do, think or know either.  Now if their actions do me harm, then it is a different story.

It is always better to lead by example.... every day and do what is right for you and go with that.  If you have good character attributes, you will be successful most often.  If you don't have good character attributes you will fail most often.  Skill never made anyone successful but tin their quest to develop the many good character attributes that leads to success also leads them to acquire many helpful skills as part of the gravy. 

Like all things in life, good health is the result of being willing, choosing wisely and doing what it takes to gain good health and hold it dear - just like anything else worth having and holding dear. 

For health reasons, I wanted to be the best bread baker at home i could be - a skill - making the best bread that I considered the best bread for me.  The path i have followed over the last 2 years to get there, is just a reflection of building on good character attributes,  Being fair, decent and honest, especially with myself, being determined to persevere, being willing to do all the many things it takes to be a good bread baker.   The result, two years later, is well over 200 different breads actually baked.... during which Lucy and I learned an awful lot.... some of it was even helpful in making the bread she wants to eat :-)  Had to get this back to bread somehow.

Happy Baking

mimi7107's picture
mimi7107

This (along with the baking powder dissertation) is the most interesting thread here in a long time!  I agree with bits and pieces of most of the posts.  I think if folks would take the time to read the ingredient lists and nutritional information (and learn to actually undersand what they mean) it would be a lot easier to eat healthier.  If you take the time to read even Weight Watchers and Lean Cuisine labels, most of those meals are loaded with salt and sugar.  It's a question of one taking responsibility for what one eats.  

I don't go out to eat much because who the hell knows what has gone into that food?  (Unless you go to a place that specializes in healthy choices and is forthcoming about how the food is prepared.)  I'd rather cook myself and know  what I'm eating.  

Regarding baking, I've been a serious home baker for many years now.  As we all know, much of the pleasure derived from baking is making other people happy by sharing.  So I've learned the will power to taste a bit of what I bake and mentally save my notes while bringing the rest of it to work for my colleagues.  I bake a lot of bread with whole grains and wouldn't be caught dead eating any white bread from the grocery store, or for that matter any bread from the grocery store.  If it has a shelf life, it's not for me.  I really love baking very complicated yeasted coffee cakes, etc., but again, give most of it away.  The bottom line is, I don't intend to give up my love for baking in the name of being healthy. 

Having said this, I gaze across my office and clearly see four folks drinking full sugar sodas!  Happy baking and here's to more interesting posts on TFL!!

 

 

 

ElPanadero's picture
ElPanadero

A good developing thread here.

On the topic of celebrity chefs I will remain by choice, somewhat cynical as most of them are tied to supermarkets who clearly give them significant income to "say the right things".   Jamie's School dinners and Fernly-Whittinstall's campaign for free-range chicken were largely failures.  Why?  Because they dealt only with the emotive human responses to the situations (remember the gassing / oxygen starving of baby chicks on live TV?) instead of dealing with the actual BUSINESS.   Food production is a business plain and simple.  If you don't like the situation of say battery farmed chickens and believe there is something fundamentally bad or wrong with that situation then you have to deal with the business itself, not the consumers.  What Jamie and Hugh did was try to steer consumers away from certain products so that the demand for them would drop and the demand for different, more expensive products rose.  Therein lay the swift path to failure.

People are generally slaves in a system or systems designed specifically to maintain their enslavement for as long as possible.  Hence many people will now be working well into their 70s and beyond.  This is reality.  The business of food production is centred around cost and profits and the corporations will battle hard to produce ever cheaper food products because people in their enslavement, can only afford so much.

The issue of whether or not any given food product ought to be actualy allowed to be produced and sold is an entirely different matter.

Thus, should cigarettes be allowed to be sold?  Not really, but if we are going to insist on free-will, free-choice then yes it has to be allowed but it then has to come with very strong and clear health warnings.  Should cans of colas and other sweetener and sugar laden fizzy drinks be allowed to be sold?  No, not really, but again if we are going to have free-will, free-choice then yes. . . BUT they should equally come with health warnings.

And here is the rub because we find ourselves caught in the ridiculous cross-fire between conglomorates with massive wealth and power and law making governments strapped of cash and power.  The laws SHOULD be enforcing clear representation of all unhealthy products.  Every ingedient should be clearly listed without subterfuge and misleading terms and anything that is a threat to good health should be clearly visible in large warning letters on the label.  At present we don't have this so the scams, cons, dreadful perpetuation of mis-selling will continue.

If you want to stop battery chicken farms then you have to stop the business PROPERLY.  You have to identify exactly why it is unhealthy, get that scientifically backed up, and then get the labelling and associated media marketing to reflect that.  Trying to put off consumers with presentations of chicks being murdered wasn't and isn't the answer.  Make the battery farmers label their products as unhealthy (assuming they are) and the consumer will naturally make an informed choice.  e.g.  "This product may contain a level of anti-biotics as a result of poor chicken health caused by intensive farming of chickens in a confined space".

Of course this isn't going to happen because the Governments are weak, in the pockets of the conglomorates and have no money.  Only when people rise up against their ruling elite and demand fair treatment will anything change.

Meanwhile, I have determined to de-program myself from everything I was taught as a child. Much of it was plain nonsense.  We were programmed for a reason, to accept our position as slaves and to conform.  I don't accept that anymore.  I now take responsibility for my own health, I don't trust the medical "system", I educate myself on what the Earth can provide for me in this respect (and it's a great deal it turns out!).  I take responsibility for what I eat and drink in as far as I can truthfuly determine what is in those things. Still working on that. 

The truth is all out there, if we can be bothered and courageous enough to search for it.

EP

 

 

 

 

MisterTT's picture
MisterTT

of your post, but the arguments you make are flawed. Sure, better demarcation of food items would help somewhat, but, honestly, who doesn't know that the bag of chips you're loading into your shopping cart next to the stout is not good for you? It's all well and good to blame corporations (who are far from saints, of course) that the food one is buying is not healthy. It isn't the corporations that are buying the food, it's the consumer.

If the consumer can't be bothered to learn what products are harmful, it's unlikely that he even cares, thus it is unlikely that cigarette-package-like warnings will make him more conscientious. You don't put a label on a knife saying "may be fatal" after all.

I live in Lithuania and never really ran into a thing like wrongful labeling. Sure, the print is small, but by law the ingredients must be written down completely and clearly in decreasing-mass order. It is not uncommon to see people use magnifying glasses in stores to read the packaging, but the important thing is that those care to do it, do it.

That is why I am categorically against such nonsense as not allowing to sell unhealthy food, badly raised chicken, genetically modified or gamma-blasted fruit and vegetables. There is more than enough information for people to decide for themselves. A somewhat cynical example would be that pensioners can go ahead and buy as much GM produce as they want, but there is a ring of truth in there, is there not?

ElPanadero's picture
ElPanadero

I'm not suggesting the banning of unhealthy foods in any sense.  I'm merely saying that such foods should come with the appropriate warnings.  It's about an informed decision.  I'm mindful here that for me to even be able to attempt any kind of debate or argument on such topics is only possible after many hours reading and absorbing information.  I would never have learned about Apricot Kernels had I not started that journey, never have learned about GM foods, nor about the specific health/healing benefits of a wide range of herbs and other natural products.  I have the "luxury" of having no kids, so more free time than a great many people out there working tirelessly 9-5 (most likely 7-6!) who like to relax when they get their weekends and evenings rather than spent those hours bent over books and laptop screens.

What I am saying is that there is almost a basic human right which is to have food products that are NOT harmful to their health (if eaten in reasonable quantities).  Our peers, governments, ruling elite, should as a minimum ensure that basic right and not therefore require every human to pass a degree in food science in order to ensure themselves of what is and what is not harmful.  The average person needs to be able to walk into any shop or supermarket and be confident that anything they pick up is not immediately harmful or addictive or likely to adversely affect their body, save those products clearly labelled as such.

Some people very genuinely believe that drinking Pepsi Max or other sugarless drinks is a healthy thing because in their minds, they are less fattening and have less calories than their sugar filled counterparts.  There are no warnings on the can about the effects of the sweeteners.  Does that mean large doses of aspartame and / or sucralose etc are healthy?

MisterTT's picture
MisterTT

but what I was trying to say that listing aspartame or saccharin as an ingredient is a warning in itself. By the way, here it is required by law to clearly write on a prominent place on the bottle that if the drink is made with artificial sweeteners. Of course there isn't anything written to suggest that this might be bad, but the implication is quite evident, isn't it?

I suppose I might be giving some people too much credit, but labeling everything that may possibly harm you would also have the adverse effect, same as smokers don't really care about the rotten lung on their fag packet, if everything is so over-labeled, a large part will just say "everything's bad for you" and go ahead with buying that sixpack of Pepsi Max.

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

safe in the recommended amounts listed for consumption on the label.  Tons of research prove thsi to be true.  There is no need to list them as bad  in any way.   I love the plastic bag labels that say, do not let children put bags oven their heads - death may result.  Who knew!

Here in  AZ we have laws that force home owners with small children to fence their pools so the kids don't fall in and drown accidentally,  But they still drown all the time because  parents or those entrusted to watch over the children do not supervise their small children when in the pool area.  They leave the pool to do something else, are distracted in some way or leave the door open to the pool.  One mother was talking to her husband on the phone poolside  - as her daughter died not 20 feet away.  This mother, or any parent or anyone else, has never been prosecuted in any way.  The reason was folks felt that they suffered enough.

You can't fix stupid.

ElPanadero's picture
ElPanadero

"listing aspartame or saccharin as an ingredient is a warning in itself."

Not really.  The majority of people would work to the notion that if an ingredient is allowed to be put into a foodstuff, then it must be ok to eat.  So if they see Aspartame or Acesulfame K in the ingredient list they may well not really know what they are, but nevertheless figure "hey, if it were harmful my all-protective peers and governments on who I place my dependence, wouldn't allow them to use it right?".  Maybe aspartame is a bad example here, how about Phenylanaline? 

Ingredients are just that ingredients.  They are neither presented as warnings nor interperted as warnings by the majority of people.  A warning is what you get on a cigarette packet, clear, upfront, in big letters, unmissable.

I take your point about how far can such warnings go and wouldn't that result in everything having a warning.  I guess there are balances to be struck.  An example.  A generally accepted RDA of caffeine for an adult is 200mg-300mg.  For a child it is about 38mg (though this varies according to the weight of the child).  We regularly see kids drinking cans of coke and pepsi and dr pepper, diet or otherwise.  How much caffeine is in those products?  Here are the numbers:

Diet Pepsi - 35mg
Diet Coke - 45mg
Diet Dr Pepper - 41mg
Pepsi Max - 69mg

Easy to see then that with just one can of these drinks a child has already reached or surpassed the RDA of caffeine.  Small wonder that many kids exhibit all of the nasty side effects that too much caffeine produces.   Should there be a warning on such drinks to say "This drink contains the full RDA of caffeine for a child, no more than 1 can per day is recommended"?

The marketing of these products never spells out such warnings and instead encourages people, particularly kids, to drink up.  After all it's the lipsmackingly good real thing ! 

 

 

 

 

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

the USA must be deemed a healthy to be sold in the first place.  Each has a label on it already that clearly states what is in it, what the healthy serving size is, it's percent of the daily allowed amount and its nutritional information with percents of each category.   Not one person has died from improper labeling or following the information on it - One of the few total and complete success in the food industry.. 

MisterTT's picture
MisterTT

not be true. I think what you mean is "safe to eat", which is a deal different from healthy.

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

unhealthy - means not safe to eat.  Folks die without salt, sugar, fat, meat, carbs  and other things some call unhealthy but they are required none the less, in proper amounts and perfectly healthy and safe to eat in those amounts.  Even whole grain SD bread is unhealthy, just like water and not safe to eat in large amounts. 

Heath's picture
Heath

I hear this phrase bandied about time and time again and, whilst I agree with the sentiment in theory, it's a very, very complex issue.  People you don't know anything about shouldn't be judged as stupid and/or lacking willpower just because they're fat.  There are many causes, some that have been touched upon above, such as lack of education and psychological reasons.

Some may sneer that the facts about nutrition are available to everyone, but that viewpoint comes from one of priviledge.  Not everyone is even educated enough to know they need educating, or have the confidence or means to educate themselves even if they do.  Not everyone comes from a home they were exposed to home cooking, so it seems like something only other people do.  Not everyone can afford the equipment needed to cook.  I didn't have any confidence in my cooking until I found several sources of cheap, easy, simple and tasty recipes online.  My confidence grew from there.

I'm from the UK but read all the time about "food deserts" in the US where poor people without the money or means for transport cannot buy anything but processed and junk food in their local area.  My sister who lived in Washington DC for several years had personal experience of this phenomenon. I'm so glad this isn't the case where I live, where all food basics and fresh fruit/veg are available at every supermarket.

What I really wanted to touch on, though, was eating for psycological reasons.  Many people dismiss this as weak will, but I can tell you that that is often not the case.  I suffered from an eating disorder for over 20 years and put on massive amounts of weight.  I was very, very lucky that I found many other people in the same position as myself on the internet who gave me the support and means to cure myself (if anyone's interested, what helped me the most was a book called Overcoming Overeating by Jane Hirschmann and Carol Munter, which is very well-respected in the eating disorders community).  Eating disorders are not taken seriously in the UK so there was no medical help available for me.  Eating disorders are a lot more common than most people think, because the sufferers are so secretive about them.  They are a serious mental illness that affect people's whole lives, causing them to be obsessed with what they eat and how much they weigh.  Dismissing such people as lacking in willpower couldn't be further from the truth.  Sufferers try harder than anyone to eat healthily.

There is also the similar, but lesser, problem of disordered eating.  Many, many people try very, very hard to lose weight without long-term success.  They cannot all be dismissed as being weak willed.  Yo-yo dieting is worse for the body than being fat, so learning to let go of dieting and teaching yourself to eat nutritiously and moderately without worrying too much about your weight is the only answer to improve the health of such people.

Another relevant issue: when I started baking for myself I discovered that I ate less of my baking than of similar bought products, even though they were usually more delicious.  I did some research and discovered to my horror that it's common practice for food manufacturers to put appetite stimulants into processed food.  For example, I read that a certain well-known brand of cookies contains 23 appetite stimulants!  I'm well-educated and internet-savvy but I'd never come across this fact before going looking for it.

Personally responsibility cannot apply to every situation and we shouldn't judge people whose lives we know nothing about.

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

that most fat folks have eating disorders,  I don't think i would go so far as to say that they have a mental illness though.  In the US manufacturers cannot put 'appetite' stimulants, what ever those are,  in food without putting them on the label - or face some serious consequences.  Hiding 23 of them in a cookie would get the food police aroiund here to ask for the death penalty - even though most are against it.

I believe I had the worse, if most common, food disorder of all.  I could not stop eating more calories of all kinds than I could exercise off.  Once I started eating much, much less and exercising much much more, next thing i know I was  cured.

Happy baking

Heath's picture
Heath

I'm afraid you misunderstand what an eating disorder is. They are very serious mental illnesses that ruin lives (and can even kill) and need medical intervention and/or psychological support to overcome. If you can overcome an eating problem with willpower it is NOT an eating disorder.  I tried in vain using willpower to overcome my eating disorder for 25 years until I found the right support.

The solution was to STOP using willpower and to let myself eat what I wanted without guilt or recrimination, along with psychological support. Yes, I gorged myself at first, but slowly I learned you can have too much of a good thing and my eating naturally moderated itself. I also learned to listen to my physical hunger cues and to enjoy waiting until I was hungry to eat. All this I learned without willpower (in fact it needed supreme willpower to stick to eating in such a counter-intuitive way).  If willpower could have cured me I wouldn't have suffered all those years of torment.

Torment isn't too strong a word - sufferers of eating disorders are tormented not just by compulsions around food but with their weight, self-hatred, anxiety and depression. They have no self-esteem and often cannot lead normal lives or maintain relationships.

Although I said eating disorders aren't taken seriously in the UK, they are in the US and there are lots of psychiatrists, counsellors and centres where treatment is available. I know because I've spoken to many fellow sufferers living in the US.  Unfortunately, eating disorders are very hard to treat because they're so deeply ingrained, and treatment isn't available to those who don't know there is treatment for their condition or who have no insurance.

Just because something works for one person, doesn't mean it can work for everyone.

As for the issue of appetite stimulants, the "23 appetite stimulants" claim comes from Paul Stitt, a biochemist working in the food industry, in a whistle-blowing book he published in the 80s

http://www.amazon.com/Fighting-Food-Giants-Paul-Stitt/dp/0939956004

  I'd certainly prefer to take his word over it than big food corporations.  Maybe the information is incorrect or out of date, however foods produced industrially certainly do contain many additives that can affect susceptible people in different ways. They certainly affect my appetite.

I'm not going to argue any more with you.  I've put my point across and I'm sure some people will find truth in my words.

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

I am not agreeing that fat people have a mental illness. Calling fat people mentally ill is kind of cruel in my book.  I'm glad you worked out a way for you to conquer your eating problems and disorder none the less.  There is more than one way to skin a cat.

I'm pretty sure most folks that read the labels that food giants put on their products that some of the stuff used; for coloring or extending it, extend shelf life, etc are odd. My rule is, is if I can't pronounce it ,it probably isn't required and just there to combat some bad quality in lookor taste the product would have over time otherwise.

I'm not in the camp that thinks food manufactures are evil and in the business of adding 23 stimulants to their products to make them addictive.  But perhaps I am biased after being in the food distribution business for many years, know most of the manufacturers and their reps well, visited most of their plants to see what they do and how they do it.

Heath's picture
Heath

My point wasn't that all fat people have a mental illness (that would just be silly).  I'm saying that it's a real condition and that you can't tell by looking at someone why they're overweight, so please stop judging people when you haven't got a clue what their lives are like or what's going on in their heads (that comment isn't aimed particularly at you, btw, but at people in general).  Asking people not to be judgmental is the opposite of cruel, surely?

Anyway, I always enjoy reading your posts on bread-making, Dabrownman, and have great respect for you :)

A coupe of links for anyone else reading who may be interested:-

Diagnostic criteria from the American Psychiatric Association:

http://www.dsm5.org/Documents/Eating%20Disorders%20Fact%20Sheet.pdf

Information from the Mayo Clinic:

http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/eating-disorders/basics/definition/con-20033575

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

one ex fat person to another :-)  We both know how hard it is to loss a lot of weight - regardless of the cause.

Cheers

ElPanadero's picture
ElPanadero

"All artificiaal sweetners are completely safe in the recommended amounts listed for consumption on the label.  Tons of research prove thsi to be true"

Plenty of research suggests this isn't true.  It comes down to whether or not you believe the organisations that certify foods are being truthful or whether they are pandering to the massive influence and control of conglomorates.  If you don't believe, then the accompanying view is of course that any research which demonstrates that say sweeteners ARE bad for our health will be ceremoneously squashed and rubbished by those "controlled" organisations.   For myself, this seems apparent especially when I look at the Apricot Kernel situation in the USA.  There is no doubt in my mind that Big Pharma have quashed any and all research here, made up scare stories about people being killed by cyanide and gone so far as having the product removed from shelves as it represents such a huge threat to the more expensive and lucrative cancer treatments like cancer drugs and so on.  

"Each has a label on it already that clearly states what is in it"

This is also untrue.  Does any meat clearly state that it contains ammonia?  It is perhaps a small amount and it's used in the processing so labelling laws don't require it to be on the label but it is in there nonetheless.  Ammonia is also in a lot of other products and equally not listed.  There are loopholes, misleads and skullduggery everywhere.

Wake up Neo . . . The Matrix has you !

dosco's picture
dosco

I've seen these types of threads on other boards, they always get ugly and people get upset ... accordingly I hope the mods lock it.

ElPanadero ... the problem I have with this logic is that it will always discount any science because an argument can always be found supporting how "big brother doesn't want it this way."

Why didn't that new drug work in clinical trials? Because big brother didn't want it that way.

Why isn't the drug company testing this new stuff? Because big brother didn't want it that way.

Etc. Etc. Etc.

The next step is a devolution into snake oil salesmanship ... for example, a work colleague (Charlie), his father was dying of cancer. Charlie claimed to have found the "ancient Ojibwa cure for cancer." Of course the Ojibwa indians didn't cure cancer, so this was simply a snake oil routine. A fool and their money are soon parted.

If you are interested in cancer and the interesting economic and political forces behind cancer treatments, may I suggest the book Cancer, the Emperor of All Maladies. There is a fascinating section in there about Gleevec and how similar compounds aren't being tested because the regulatory burden is so high. There is also an interesting discussion about how some drugs, that have been rushed into widespread use, were actually found to be ineffective and/or dangerous.

Fact is much stranger than fiction.

Of course, it could all be a plot by Big Brother to fool us into taking the blue pill.

Cheers-
Dave

 

rozeboosje's picture
rozeboosje

I must say I'm pleasantly surprised with how this thread is unfolding. Certainly, people have strong opinions either way and are not afraid to voice them, but everybody is very civil and nobody has resorted to any untoward behaviour. I think we're good here :-)

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

You do know that Neo and the Matrix are fiction and not real right?

I spent 30 years in the food business from producer, manufacturer, processor, distributor and retailer and I have to tell you never ever ran across anything like the situation you believe is common place where evil doers in the food chain are colluding to control and corrupt government food regulators to have them allow harmful food ingredients in the food people eat while knowing they are not safe or not.

The FDA has a list of all kinds of ingredients and contaminates that they allow in food in very small quantities to small to worry about including radioactive materials, chemicals, stones, insects, dirt, dust, pollen, etc - the list is quite endless.  The reason this is so is because no one can keep them out in such small quantities and they have been tested and proven harmless in these small quantities - so they  do not need to be listed on labels - like tiny amounts of ammonia

The FDA changes the limits on these items all the time as they determine that they need to be either limited more or less depending on the verified research.

Anyone can have a new ingredient gain FDA approval by following their publicly published procedure for doing so.  Just follow their rules and regulations, do the required testing  and you will be successful or not.  Others can provide counter testing to the FDA as well.  In the case of artificial sweeteners - for years the sugar industry tried their best to keep them from being allowed for all kinds of reasons.  The process of approval is long, difficult and costly, with all kinds of checks and balances because people will die if the FDA gets is really wrong.

Once an ingredient of food is approved it doesn't stop there.  Just to store food in Illinois for one example requires 13 different federal, city, county and state inspections to ensure the regulations for food distribution centers is being strictly adhered too.  Manufactures and producers have it even worse because they could be using fresh ingredients and the process are designed to make sure pathogens are mitigated by sanitation, testing,  heat, chemical or other means in the manufacturing process.

The real problem in the food chain as far as safety is concerned is the one that routinely strikes too often, making people ill or even causing death.  Fresh products like veggies, fruits, eggs, meat, dairy, nuts anything that isn't processed can kill you before anyone even knows it is a problem.

Now there are regulations, regulators, inspectors and procedures in place to track the product for farm to consumer to find out where the problem lies and to get it fixed immediately by closing down the plant and people responsible and recalling the product.  Because people are against certain methods to treat these issues and some are expensive - radiation and UV come to mind - things that could be done to make fresh foods less deadly - a shame really.

What you describe as ' loopholes, misleads and skullduggery everywhere.' dies not exist any more than the matrix does.  The people I know in the food business from the business owners, regulators, inspectors etc are all trying their best to do the right thing and have no interest at all in colluding in any conspiracy with the government.

There are bad apples in the chain like anywhere else and mistakes are made all the time too - even by people who should know better.   But they are exposed time quickly weeded out and prosecuted if necessary for breaking the many laws that control this business from start to finish.  i mean they all have family and friends that have to eat this stuff too and they don't want to poison their own.   So it isn't just the penalty for being an evil  criminal that keeps people fair decent and honest when it comes to food safety at all levels.

I guess I'm not as paranoid about it as you are because I lived the reality and know the truth.  There is no food Matrix.  If there was one controlled by anyone or anything, they would be hunted down, treed and exterminated like the vermin they are - by the survivors.  Great discussion don't you think?  

ElPanadero's picture
ElPanadero

it's a good debate for sure.  All that's really missing is for us all to be sat in the same room, in comfortable arm chairs by a crackling open fire with a glass of your favourite tipple in hand.   A good port would do me or a glass of 30 yr old Auntique Pedro Ximinez sherry.

This said, with the topics in hand, it seems unlikely that we will progress to any meaningful conclusion. Your attachment to the "Industry" clearly forms a large part of your views on the various topics being covered here.  You choose to place reliance on your governments and the various multi-national organisations that they are intrinsically linked with and have confidence that they have your best interests at heart.  This is your perogative and I'm very happy for you to have that perogative.

For myself, through hours of reading and wrestling with my conscience, fighting every notion that I was pre-programmed with from childhood, daring to think the unthinkable, and taking small steps at a time, I have determined to find what truths I can through practical experience rather than try to make sense of the minefiled that is one persons set of "evidence" pitted against another's set of evidence.  Personal experience is what counts.  It is undeniable, and irrefutable to oneself,  but it takes courage and often great leaps of faith to pass beyond some of the scare stories put out there.

My personal experience has already proven to me that some of that scaremongering is nothing short of outright lies.  That in itself gives me the courage to keep testing, keep challenging and keep searching for real answers.  I fully expect that search to continue all of my life. 

ATB

EP

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

of restricting free speech so long as it is respectful.  Not being able to discuss issues is the much bigger problem and why free speech in the USA is the first on the bill of rights.  I now,in many EU countries, there is no bill of rights and there is no guaranteed free speech -  it is regulated, filtered and suppressed by the speech police

Floyd makes the rules here and his rules of the past are that if it remains respectful - no harm, no foul. 

dosco's picture
dosco

I'm with you ... IME I would bet that this conversation degenrates into badness.

I hope not, and it seems the folks here are decent/respectable/nice ... we'll see.

Here's to a civil discussion!

Cheers-
Dave

 

MangoChutney's picture
MangoChutney

My own family physician believed that the bread I am making for my family was bad for us.  He insisted that I was better off fiber-wise eating an apple than eating once slice of my own homemade 100% whole wheat sourdough bread.  I drew up a spreadsheet proving otherwise, and he was amazed.  In two years I lost 50 pounds, following a lifestyle change that enables me to eat one ounce of chocolate for dessert every day and two large scoops of ice cream every two weeks.  In those two years, my total cholesterol dropped from 331 to 235, my LDL dropped from 256 to 158, and my HDL rose from 41 to 62.  Last November some dietician at the clinic wrote on my results that she wanted to consult with me over our diet; that if I was not able to get my LDL under 100 then I would have to go onto a cholesterol statin.  My physician and I have an agreement that I will not do that because of the mental fog I experienced when I took statin, so she is out of luck.  Our medical care community needs educating along with the general populace.  Who is the average person going to believe when their own physician tells them that "all white foods are bad"?  The average person can't judge an expert from a fraud, and can't afford the pricey books that would teach them better always assuming that they could understand what was written in those textbooks.

The other parts of my program for losing weight includes not eating the same size portions as my husband, whose drive for egalitarianism extended to equal portions of dinner despite his being 5" taller than I.  My program also includes walking for 1 hour a day, whenever physically possible.  That excludes days when the driveway is icy, when it is in single digits or below (F), when there is cold rain, and when I am injured in some fashion.  Walking for an hour every day is something that people who work for a living might not be able to accomplish, especially if they have to cook dinner when they get home from work.  This even assumes that they don't feel as if they have earned the right to vegetate for the rest of the day, having worked for eight hours at some job they may hate.

As for not cooking: I never got that message, that cooking was difficult.  Cooking was what my mother, my sister, and I did in order to feed the family.  Cooking is how one turns raw food into dinner.  That was true for every female person I knew when I was growing up.  It must have been some social class other than ours that started the trend towards not cooking.  Then the others followed.  Or perhaps it was a myth perpetrated by the sellers of prepared foods.  Whatever caused that message to start, it was a foolish thing to heed.  What are you going to do with the time that you have saved by buying calorie-rich pre-prepared foods?  Use it to eat more?

I'm not going to touch the assertion that the government would like to keep their tax-paying cattle fat, dumb, and happy.  *wry expression*

The closest living relative to human beings is a creature who spends its time seeking ripe bananas, hunting the occasional monkey or gazelle, and fornicating.  I think it will take some effort for the human race to do better than that when the bananas, and indeed all of the rest of it, are easily available to everyone.

Well, those are enough potentially offensive opinions for me to express.  Have a good day, everyone.

rozeboosje's picture
rozeboosje

"As for not cooking: I never got that message, that cooking was difficult."

Thankfully, neither did I. As I grew up there was ALWAYS a home cooked meal on the table. Both my mum and my dad like cooking, so when one wasn't in form for it, the other would do it instead. And my dad is Italian so he knows what's good ;-)

I'm glad to say that my daughter is now getting the same message every day. Of course we do have the odd "lazy day", but at least 9 out of 10 days the food on our table is cooked from scratch. And she loves it.

clazar123's picture
clazar123

-an appreciation of food, the expectancy that food is made at home and no food issues. I am very proud of the fact that both my kids do not seem to have any food issues despite the fact that their mother did. I worked very hard on my issues (thank you Weight Watchers) and even though mine are not yet conquered, the kids  seem to be normal. They also both cook and one bakes wonderfully.