Time to scare Americans skinny - The Packer

Time to scare Americans skinny

10/11/2012 05:07:00 PM
Tom Karst

The ministers of the faith are always at work, at home or on the mission field.

If the universal good is fruits and vegetables, it is expected that some would try to hijack the message for their own purposes, to water it down and dilute it.

And like the U.S., Europe and the United Kingdom have processed food manufacturers who try to snatch the halo from fruits and vegetables.

The Fresh Produce Consortium of the United Kingdom issued a news release in July that said in its lead that “the UK Government must sort out widespread inaccuracies of 5 A DAY claims which abuse consumer trust.”

The consortium, the leading fresh produce trade association in the United Kingdom, said processors were overstepping their bounds. The FPC said the Channel 4 Dispatches programme  “highlighted many of the ridiculous declarations made by processors and the Government’s failure to stop unscrupulous hijacking of the 5 A DAY message.”

Particularly, a couple of short documentary newscasts illuminated the high sugar content of fruit drinks.

“It’s time the UK Government sorted out this confusion. 5 A DAY must return to its core principles, based around the convenience of eating fresh fruit and vegetables, to avoid misleading the public about the nutritional content of their food basket,” said Nigel Jenney, Chief Executive of the Fresh Produce Consortium said in the release. “The Government must do more to encourage people to enjoy the benefits of affordable fresh fruit and vegetables.”

The release went on to say that research by Oxford University stated thousands of lives could be saved every year “if everyone in the UK followed dietary guidelines.” Yes, we have heard that before, haven’t we?

Here in the U.S., the Robert Wood Johnson report “F as in Fat” was another reminder of the great costs society bears because of obesity.

Importantly, the report pointed out seven of the ten states with the highest rates of obesity were also in the bottom ten for fruit and vegetable consumption. Can we assume that the ten states with the highest per capita Double Stuff Oreo consumption were also the most obese? I’m betting that is the case.

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Sarah Ayala    
Portland, Oregon  |  October, 12, 2012 at 11:38 AM

I totally agree! I get frustrated by the myriad of "diets" and marketing out there that confuse and complicate something as basic as healthy eating. We should relax and enjoy, fresh, real food. The greater variety of fruits and vegetables we put in our diets the greater variety of nutrients we consume and the less room we have for out of the box options filled with sugar and substances that are unknown and unpronounceable by the majority of us. If anyone is interested in forgetting about complicated diets and enjoying more fruits and vegetables (with a bend on kids should be eating more fruits and vegetables too) please check out www.leapingzucchini.wordpress.com

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