Book Review: Salt Sugar Fat

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Do you remember learning about the tongue map in your middle school science class? Well, according to Michael Moss’ book, Salt Sugar Fatit’s completely bogus. He says that our bodies are hard-wired to crave sweets from our taste buds to our toes. Did you know that between actual sugar cane and sugar-based sweeteners and syrup in our food products, the average person consumes 22 teaspoons of sugar per day? That is 71 pounds of sugar per year!

Evidently, the junk food manufacturers are not only clued into our total body weakness, but the Cap’n Crunch makers of the world have cashed into a multibillion dollar industry because of it. In other words, Toucan Sam is single wing-edly responsible for luring our children into the junk food nest with his irresistible advertisements leaving us parents without a prayer for their nutritional health. In a recent New York Times interview Michael Moss said:

...the {food} companies are exploiting the biology of the child when they add sugar into so many of their products throughout the grocery store {i.e bread and tomato sauce}. Our kids are being taught to expect sugar and sweetness in things that never used to be sweet before…Kids can’t distinguish between advertising and reality…therefore millions of kids are becoming clinically obese.

Even our First Lady has it out for the Lucky Leprechaun. In 2010, Michele Obama launched the “Let’s Move” campaign as part of a White House program to reverse the effects of the childhood obesity epidemic by 2030. She turned up the heat for big label food manufacturers to revise their nutrition labels while suggesting that they make a more supportive effort to help parent consumers give their kids a healthier start in life.

So what does all of this mean for the average American parent and their processed food dependents? I personally have a hard time believing that the blame for our country’s health crisis falls entirely on the Grocery Manufacturers Association. In the Land of the Free, we have a blessed choice as to what we put in our mouths {and in our babies’ mouths} every day. Are we really that defenseless against the Sugar Spikers when it comes to our family’s nutrition? I appreciate efforts like those of Moss and Michelle Obama to expose the food label’s capitalistic priorities to our own physical detriment, and yet I have to wonder if it isn’t more effective to educate the eater rather than convert Tony the Tiger?

What about you? How do you and your family stay healthy?

{Image via Armand’s Blog}

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2 Comments

  1. April 4, 2013 at 10:42 am

    Hi
    Educating ourselves is key. After that – continued awareness of what exactly we are eating
    Unfortunately so many of us have grown up with unhealthy food messages and don’t really know what our bodies need for optimum health.
    I am on a bit of a mission to get the right info out there.
    I like this post, right on my wavelength 🙂
    Julie


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