If learning about healthy choices and meal combinations isn’t difficult enough, how about adding political agendas to the confusion and see where the results take us!
Back in the early ‘80s, Luise Light was the leader of a group of top-level nutritionists with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) who developed the eating guide that became known as the Food Guide Pyramid. What people don’t realize is HER submitted proposal DID NOT look like the final version that was revealed to the public in 1992. The submitted proposal looked like the following:
Fruits (2-4 Servings) Vegetables (3-5 Servings)
Protein Foods (6-8 oz.)
Whole Grains (3-4 servings)
Calcium Foods (2-3 servings)
Fats (2-3 tbps)
Water (6-8 glasses)
Luise Light quoted,
“Carefully reviewing the research on nutrient recommendations, disease prevention, documented dietary shortfalls and major health problems of the population, we submitted the final version of our new Food Guide to the Secretary of Agriculture.”
Why did the agriculture department send it back to Luise and her team with drastic modifications? Did they believe the scientific evidence she based her conclusions on were flawed? Did they provide different scientific evidence justifying their modifications? Again, Luise Light quotes,
“As I later discovered, the wholesale changes made to the guide by the Office of the Secretary of Agriculture were calculated to win the acceptance of the food industry. For instance, the Ag Secretary’s office altered wording to emphasize processed foods over fresh and whole foods, to downplay lean meats and low-fat dairy choices because the meat and milk lobbies believed it’d hurt sales of full-fat products; it also hugely increased the servings of wheat and other grains to make the wheat growers happy. The meat lobby got the final word on the color of the saturated fat/cholesterol guideline which was changed from red to purple because meat producers worried that using red to signify “bad” fat would be linked to red meat in consumers’ minds.”
So what changes were recommended by the Office of the Secretary of Agriculture?
“Where we, the USDA nutritionists, called for a base of 5-9 servings of fresh fruits and vegetables a day, it was replaced with a paltry 2-3 servings (changed to 5-7 servings a couple of years later because an anti-cancer campaign by another government agency, the National Cancer Institute, forced the USDA to adopt the higher standard). Our recommendation of 3-4 daily servings of whole-grain breads and cereals was changed to a whopping 6-11 servings forming the base of the Food Pyramid as a concession to the processed wheat and corn industries. Moreover, my nutritionist group had placed baked goods made with white flour — including crackers, sweets and other low-nutrient foods laden with sugars and fats — at the peak of the pyramid, recommending that they be eaten sparingly. To our alarm, in the “revised” Food Guide, they were now made part of the Pyramid’s base. And, in yet one more assault on dietary logic, changes were made to the wording of the dietary guidelines from “eat less” to “avoid too much,” giving a nod to the processed-food industry interests by not limiting highly profitable “fun foods” (junk foods by any other name) that might affect the bottom line of food companies.”
The final version produced the following graph:
Luise light stated:
“I vehemently protested that the changes, if followed, could lead to an epidemic of obesity and diabetes — and couldn’t be justified on either health or nutritional grounds.
Her predictions have come to fruition.
“It’s evident that the government can’t be relied on to provide objective, health-promoting food and nutrition advice. In the 25 years since the initial Food Guide was developed, we face an unprecedented nutrition crisis. A majority of Americans have poor-quality diets and the rates of diet-related chronic diseases, from cancer, diabetes and heart disease to digestive diseases and arthritis, are soaring. The latest research blames commercial food ingredients, imbalanced diets, excessive calories and too few nutrient and antioxidant rich vegetables, fruits and whole grains.”
The consumer must be willing to face the truth that the health and welfare of our nation is NOT the PRIMARY focus of our government. Big business and Big Industry (including the health industry) focus primarily on the responsibility of the HEALTH and WELFARE of their ORGANIZATIONS and are willing to sacrifice the welfare OF THE INDIVIDUAL CONSUMER if it interferes with their financial objectives.
Although the following 2 graphs are satirical in nature, the underlying TRUTHFUL messages should not pass unnoticed.
IT ALL COMES DOWN TO A SIMPLE QUESTION:
HAVE YOU EVER HEARD ANYONE SUGGEST EATING REAL (UNPROCESSED) FOODS (PRIMARILY) ARE BAD FOR YOUR HEALTH?
If not, what GOOD reason/excuse do you have for not making this type of food your PRIMARY source of nutrition?
…and don’t say COST!…
THE COST OF YOUR LIFE IS GREATER THAN THE COST OF YOUR WALLET.