Ignore Most Dietary Advice Follow These Four Steps Instead
by Joseph Mercola: How
to Avoid Becoming a Bug Buffet This Summer
The UK Department
of Health is putting the fast food companies, processed food companies,
and soft drink manufacturers at the heart of writing government
policy on obesity.
in question include McDonald's, KFC, PepsiCo, Kellogg's, Unilever,
Mars and Diageo.
Andrew Lansley has set up five "responsibility deal" networks with
businesses to come up with policies. Many say this is the equivalent
of putting cancer policy in the hands of tobacco companies.
are dominated by food and alcohol industry members, who have been
invited to suggest measures to tackle public health crises ... In
early meetings, these commercial partners have been invited to draft
priorities and identify barriers, such as EU legislation, that they
would like removed."
Guardian November 12, 2010
The UK Department
of health is clearly placing the health and well-being of their
citizens in grave danger with this foolish decision. But I can't
say I'm surprised. This action is a phenomenal testimony as to just
how powerful the food industry is. It certainly rivals the drug
cartels as to their pernicious influence on public health.
In the US,
Americans currently spend about 90 percent of their food budgets
purchasing processed foods, which offer very little in terms of
nutritional value and instead typically contain ingredients that
will actually cause you harm. According to a previous
article in the New York Times, "no country has embraced
the movement toward commercialized, prepackaged food as much as
the United States. "
that this latest decision is little more than a scheme to drag the
UK down the same path of increasing corporate profits while rapidly
destroying the health of the British people.
McDonald's, PepsiCo, and Mars Know About Health?
That's an important
question that the UK department of health appears to ignore. The
evidence showing how processed foods and fast foods destroy health
is so overwhelming you'd have to be buried in a Chilean coal mine
to be ignorant of this connection. And yet some of the worst
corporate culprits are now supposed to write government health policies
to combat obesity, alcohol and diet-related disease!
responsibility deal network is chaired by the head of the lobby
group the Wine and Spirit Trade Association.
network to tackle diet and health problems includes processed food
manufacturers, fast food companies, and Compass, the catering company
famously pilloried by Jamie Oliver for its school menus of turkey
twizzlers. The food deal's sub-group on calories is chaired by PepsiCo..."
This is blatant
folly. Additionally, the board created to oversee the work
of these "deal networks" is ALSO dominated by the food, alcohol,
advertising and retail industries! So what you end up with is foxes
guarding the foxes that guard the hen house...
even more precarious for the public, The Guardian reports
that "one group was told that the health department did not want
to lead, but rather hear from its members what should be done."
the UK health department is giving carte blanche to industry to
devise whatever "health recommendations" they see fit, and you can
be sure of one thing – these industries will NOT recommend anything
that could jeopardize their business! For example, they've already
ruled out using pricing of food or alcohol as a strategy
to change consumer behavior. What does that tell you? It's quite
clear to me that nothing good can come out of this.
Drives Declining Health Statistics
It's not hard
to predict that public health policies dictated by the likes of
McDonald's, PepsiCo and Mars will be far from successful in creating
recommendations to successfully curb obesity and diet-related diseases.
How could they?
The very existence of these corporations relies on consumers maintaining
their purchasing habits! And that's the crux of the public health
disaster facing both the US and the UK. We all need to REDUCE our
consumption of processed foods, fast foods, sugary snacks and sodas!
None of these
types of "food" have any place whatsoever in a health-promoting,
If you eat
a fast-food burger, you can easily take in close to half of your
daily caloric requirements. Add in fries and a soda and you may
be nearing an entire day's worth of required calories in just one
meal! But in that one meal, which is designed to be eaten quickly,
on-the-go, you have not received the vitamins and minerals, the
live enzymes and micronutrients, the healthy fats or high-quality
protein that your body needs to function, let alone thrive...
these types of foods is a prescription for obesity, diabetes, and
all the health problems associated with these conditions.
obesity rate in the US is now nearing 27 percent, more than
two out of three are overweight, and 1
in 4 Americans are affected with diabetes or pre-diabetes. If
British citizens end up listening to the recommendations that arise
from this unholy alliance between the UK health department and industry,
British obesity statistics will soon mirror those in the US.
In fact, the
UK is already closing in. According
to the latest statistics from the UK NHS, a quarter of all adults
in the UK are now classified as obese. As of 2008, nearly 17 percent
of British boys between the ages of 2 and 15 also fell in the obese
category, along with just over 15 percent of all girls.
report also found that fresh produce purchases fell substantially
between 2007 and 2008. Fresh fruit purchases fell by nearly 8 percent,
and fresh green vegetables fell by almost 10 percent!
percent of men and women, respectively, consume the recommended
five portions of fruits and vegetables a day, and British children
fare even worse when it comes to consuming healthful foods, with
less than 20 percent of children consuming the recommended levels
of fruits and veggies.
and Bribes – Business as Usual in the Food Industry
There's a very
real danger in letting the food industry call the shots when it
comes to establishing public health policies. It just can't work.
The food industry, just like the pharmaceutical industry, is fraught
with corruption and questionable
business practices, including bribery and racketeering schemes.
Like other players in big business, those running the food industry
are out to make a profit, and often this comes at the expense of
your health. Three prominent examples of food industry manipulation
include the cases of:
genetically engineered bovine growth hormone (rbGH/rbST)
modified (GM) foods
You can read
history of fraud and deception that led to the approval of aspartame
here, but, in a nutshell, the evidence that showed aspartame
was harmful was ignored or falsified, and the artificial sweetener
was pushed through the the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
approval process by a select few who stood to benefit handsomely
from its profits.
Ditto for rBGH.
The U.S. FDA didn't even require that rBGH be adequately tested
before allowing it on the market. And, the fact that genetically
modified (GM) foods have been allowed to infiltrate the market
at all is a major lesson in the corruption of the food
food crops currently subsidized in the US are corn, wheat, soy and
rice. Growing little else but corn and soy means we end up with
a fast food diet. In essence, these commodity programs are subsidies
for the creation of junk and fast food, not REAL food that could
have a positive impact on public health.
In short, regardless
of where you live, the food you depend on to survive is slowly being
degraded, devalued, and de-humanized by giant corporations and short-sighted,
lackadaisical governments. And soon the UK will provide their citizens
with even more highly questionable health recommendations fashioned
by the very companies that actively created the health crises' of
obesity, diabetes and alcohol- and diet-related diseases in the
of Your Diet and Your Health With these Crucial Four Steps
you live in the US, the UK, or elsewhere, the current madness appears
to be Universal... So, what's the answer?
you need to start thinking for yourself, and ignore much, if not
most, of the health- and dietary advice you get through the conventional
channels. Fortunately, "eating healthy" is actually far easier than
most people think. Here's a quick and dirty summary:
- Focus on
raw, fresh foods, and avoid as many processed foods as possible
(for those who still have trouble understanding what "processed
food" is: if it comes in a can, bottle, or package, and has a
list of ingredients, it's processed)
- Avoid foods
that contain high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) like the plague,
but don't just limit it to HFCS, you must limit ALL sources of
fructose to less than 25 grams per day, and that includes fruit.
If you are taking the average amount of fructose you are consuming
three times that or 75 grams. At that level any fruit will cause
more harm than good for all but those engaging in unhealthy levels
of aerobic cardio activity.
- Limit or
eliminate grain carbohydrates if you have diabetes, are overweight,
or have high cholesterol or high blood pressure
sodas and other sweetened beverages with clean, pure water
If you're new
to healthful living, those four basic steps can put you on the right
path toward vastly improved health, regardless of what your government's
dietary guidelines are. For my Top
10 Healthy Lifestyle recommendations please see this previous article.
The Best Sources
for Safe, Nutritious Foods
popular belief, your local grocery store is generally NOT
going to be the best source for healthy, fresh food. Rather,
the best place to find safe, nutritious food is at your local farm
or from your local farmer's market or organic food co-op. If you
live in the US, the Coop
Directory Service (www.coopdirectory.org)
can help you find a co-op near you. My web page Promoting
Sustainable Agriculture also lists resources for high-quality
produce, meats and other foods in your area. If you're in the UK,
check out the Organic
is power, and the more people become informed, the faster real and
needed changes can come about. Below are several wonderful films
that will give you an excellent overview of the health dangers of
fast food, and the problems with modern agriculture. I highly recommend
you watch and share these with your friends and family!
2011 Dr. Joseph Mercola
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