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How Ultra-Processed Foods Are Killing Us

By Marion Nestle, November 12, 2010 - 8:11am

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I think that there is so much talk talk talk talk about processed foods and thats about it. I am allergic to processed foods and a few other things and I am tired of people saying "oh a little bit won't hurt you" as just about everything you buy is processed one way or another. So when I go to the supermarket I see some new product that screams at you healthy this and low that but in the end is ultra-processed.
Another thing is Soy. Why Soy? Who says it is good for us? who thought this idea that we should use it in EVERYTHING. Yes, I am allergic to Soy and so is the rest of the population and they don't know it. The Japanese grew and hand processed the bean and used ancient tools to extract what they could from it. Today we grow it where it is not suitable to grow and process it with modern machinery. Who asked me if I wanted it in my ice-cream or butter or biscuits or sweets, chocolate, just about everything you can think of has SOY.
The reality is that people want quick fixes, they don't question what is in their food and don't think about the future of their bodies.
Nutrition and science, yes sounds good, but what about doing something.
Regards. Mrs T King - Victoria Australia - tdkamazing@hotmail.com

Anonymous

12/05/2010 - 12:15am

I totally believe in less government and more education on how to take care of our health and the health of our children. I am a working mother and my husband and I work opposite shifts, so there is rarely two parents at home at once. On occasion I allow them to eat canned pasta or frozen pizza but I scour the labels to ensure they are not getting too much bad stuff. I have often wondered if what I am reading on these labels is somewhat deceitful. I pack their lunches everyday because I am fearful of what they could be eating at school. Since they go to public school, it is the government who is choosing what food is prepared at school. With this new food revolution, Jamie Oliver has proposed that our school systmems are not providing proper nutrition to our children, so why on earth would we want them even more involved in how we eat. A year ago I committed myself and my family to eating more whole, real food. My husband and I have lost 44 pounds between the two of us, we all sleep better and feel better. I have witnessed less hyper-activity in our boys, and with our oldest being mildly autistic that has been a blessing. I read constantly about how to take better care of myself and my family and will continue with my endeavors to do so.

Anonymous

12/03/2010 - 10:34am

Go Marion! Keep up the fight for companies and government to step up and make right by our kids. I am sick and tired of being mislead by creative marketing campaigns - thinking that I am eating wholesome foods (extra fiber and antioxidents in processed bread - come on!). We are very confused, frustrated consumers trying to make good decisions. We need to demand more factual information than we are given - on all foods, not just the processed ones.

Sandy

Anonymous

12/01/2010 - 11:07am

...a very intresting write -up on health promotion......

Anonymous

11/26/2010 - 5:12pm

A timely and very important article. All young parents should read this. I am concerned about how my grandchildren eat...with hectic schedules and Mom needing to work, it has become automatic to pick up these ultra processed food products!

Anonymous

11/26/2010 - 10:08am

I am an ambassador of minimally processed foods. As much as I can, I try to consume food that can be seen (e.g. real fruits, real vegetables and real meat), fresh from the market, even if it's not as tasty as fast food. I am not on any diet, just the REAL food diet. Since then, my overall well being has improved. I'm fitter, my mind is sharper, and what do you know... I used to be concerned about my thining hair.. and now my hair is luscious than ever. REAL food is what people need.. not frozen pizzas and canned everything.
My family still do not believe me. It hurts me when I see them eat ultra processed foods. I hope they'll come to their senses soon.

Anonymous

11/22/2010 - 10:23pm

While I certainly think that a diet high in processed foods is not as healthy as one with less processed options, saying that only government intervention will be the answer is rather frightening. Beware of the food police!

emfdvm

11/17/2010 - 2:02pm

Although I agree with everything that is said about the nutritional hazards of processed foods and drinks, the problem with regulation is that once the gate is open all the animals get out.

It is a major concern that the government, if allowed to regulate such items as these, will also regulate those producing and selling the good stuff, i.e. the small farms, the farmers markets, etc. AND, since that door has now been shoved open, the corporate industry can survive, outlast and manipulate the system, but the small farms, families and markets cannot.

So, I believe the only way is to educate people and then allow them to make the choices that they make. Since cigarettes are still on the market, then ultra-processed foods must be allowed as well. As it is, the government is already shutting down and throwing out cheese that has never been found to make anyone sick, but the egg plants, spinach plants, etc. are still operating...it's just a blip on the economy chart for them.

We must start to educate and inform the people to become more aware of WHAT they are eating. This can change some attitudes and decisions in our food choices.

So, I am against the government involvement in the regulation of foods.

Anonymous

11/17/2010 - 12:12pm

Although I agree with everything that is said about the nutritional hazards of processed foods and drinks, the problem with regulation is that once the gate is open all the animals get out.

It is a major concern that the government, if allowed to regulate such items as these, will also regulate those producing and selling the good stuff, i.e. the small farms, the farmers markets, etc. AND, since that door has now been shoved open, the corporate industry can survive, outlast and manipulate the system, but the small farms, families and markets cannot.

So, I believe the only way is to educate people and then allow them to make the choices that they make. Since cigarettes are still on the market, then ultra-processed foods must be allowed as well. As it is, the government is already shutting down and throwing out cheese that has never been found to make anyone sick, but the egg plants, spinach plants, etc. are still operating...it's just a blip on the economy chart for them.

We must start to educate and inform the people to become more aware of WHAT they are eating. This can change some attitudes and decisions in our food choices.

So, I am against the government involvement in the regulation of foods.

Anonymous

11/17/2010 - 12:11pm

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