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A Spark email I received today...

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Fight for Your Food Rights

Who's to blame for the obesity epidemic? The suspects are many, from television to schools to parents. A growing number of people are arguing that one culprit--the food and beverage industry--is getting off relatively scot-free.

"The food industry is changing, but slowly," says Dr. Kelly Brownell, author of the book Food Fight, a look at America's obsession with food and what we can do about it. ~~~this is how the spark email started~~~below is my blog~~~

I wonder why no one ever suggests taking responsibility for our own actions?

Why is it that so many people no longer know how to prepare even a simple meal?

Eating in front of the TV was a "special treat" when TV Dinners came out in the 60's - when did it become standard fare? I still eat in front of the TV but not TV Dinners - "I cook, therefore I lose." While it is very possible to lose weight by eating TV Dinners (my sister lost tons of weight - only to put it all back on again when she resumed her cooking), too often the appetite is not satiated, leading to snacking.

When did picking up "Fast Food" on the way home become the norm for planned dinners/suppers?

I do agree that we are affected by our society - but the blame for my obesity was me. Pure and simple, I was obese because I overate.

When people ask me today, "how did you lose that weight?" I like to tell them I lost it by shutting my mouth and moving my feet. Eating less and moving more will bring on weight loss. Then I go on to tell them about SparkPeople and all the free tools available for the using. And I hand them my printed card about SparkPeople.

This is just my humble opinion of things. But I truly believe in taking responsibility for my own actions - especially for getting obese, and now for losing weight.

**edit: @prairiegirl44's comment:
I wasn't aware of HFCS and the consequences. But I am trying desperately to get away from anything canned and/or processed.

I have switched totally to frozen veggies and fresh fruit (or fruits I have frozen fresh) just to minimize sodium but it is nice to note that I am also saving myself from HFCS.

I do still eat jarred peanut butter and jelly but again try to make smarter choices with Natural PB that only has peanuts and salt and have been using Polaner and Smuckers jellies, either natural or low-sugar. (They do cost more but I am finding them at a Food Surplus/Thrift Store about $1 per jar.)

A surprising footnote is the less sugar I put into my body, the less my body is asking for sugar! A definite win-win situation!!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • JJJ1226
    well, I know FOR SURE, that the blame is all mine and only I can change that :)
    3094 days ago
    Great blog!! It's so much easier to blame everybody and everything but outselves for what we put into our bodies.... Surely it's hard to resist sometimes but nobody forces our hands :)
    3095 days ago
    Take responsibility for what you are eating! Move that body! Yeah, fast food can be a curse.
    I have pretty much weaned myself from sugar but sodium still gets me. I add as
    little salt as I can but DH knows where the shaker is. emoticon
    3096 days ago
    Hi Linda;

    I agree, and I take full responsibility for my extra pounds, but I'm also constantly trying to educate myself to make wise choices and sometimes I slip up.

    I want to know what you think about industry using High Fructose Corn Syrup. Remember the SP article "The Effects of Corn Syrup Aren't So Sweet"?

    When you take in something sweetend with HFCS your body doesn't release insulin and as a consequence Leptin is not released and without Leptin you brain doesn't get the message that you're full so you overeat.

    20+ years ago, when I first left home and started taking care of myself I thought high fructose corn syrup was better for you because it wasn't table sugar, sucrose. So I would choose products with corn syrup thinking it was "less sweet" and would be better for me!

    Don't you wonder if food producers used HFCS's because you'd keep eating and it would help them with their profit margin? If that's what they were up to wouldn't you that make you mad?

    Peace, PG44

    3096 days ago
  • CICI510
    Awesome blog! Just what I needed to read today. :)
    3096 days ago
    This was a great blog, I tell everyone I meet that it is my fault that I am obese. It took me 30 years to get here and I WILL get back to a healthier lifestyle.
    Thank you for taking the time to write this.
    3096 days ago
    The truth shall set you free!

    3096 days ago
    emoticon Say it again. I just love it. It becomes so easy for people to blame others for there short comings. It is only when one takes responsibility for ones on actions that we will succeed . emoticon blog

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    3096 days ago
    Ah, this is a tough one. Kudos to you for taking responsibility for your own actions. Like you, I blame myself for my overweight state, and I regret that I did not take a more proactive approach in creating a more healthy eating environment for my now adult children. There is no question that nobody is holding a gun to your head and forcing you to eat Big Macs.

    However, all that said, society makes it easier to eat poorly than to eat well. Unhealthy fast food is plentiful, relatively inexpensive and heavily advertised. It is much easier to grab a burger (and who has a plain burger these days - cheeseburgers are the norm) or a pizza than to actually prepare a meal. Of course, with the right planning, that doesn't have to be the case.

    I actually have mixed feelings about legislating these things. On the one hand, I don't believe in "fat taxes" (like taxing regular soda) or blocking the opening of fast food restaurants. Again, you eat these things of your free will. On the other hand, I do support some of the laws that have taken trans fats out of restaurants and required the posting of calories.

    I agree that it is a shame that people just don't know how to cook anymore. For me, it is one of my great pleasures, and it allows me to control what I eat.

    If you ever get the chance, you should read the book "Fat Land" by Greg Critser. He analyzes the reasons that we, as a nation, became so fat. It includes things like the politics behind HFCS, the advent of fast food and super sizing, the overall permissive attitude that many parents had toward their children's eating habits, and the decline in the importance of phys ed classes. It's actually a pretty easy read.

    To FINDINGREALME, I can't believe that anyone would comment on the contents of your shopping cart!!! What nerve!!!! At times I have been tempted to comment for the opposite reason (i.e. when a heavy person has a cart full of junk food), but of course I never would.
    3096 days ago
    Great blog as always! I was reading a similar article over the weekend how the big bad food industry is to blame for the obesity problem because they make the food so hard to resist (they were comparing it to the tobacco industry etc). I believe people become addicted to a substance (pick one of the usual suspects) but we can kick it if we are willing to put in the effort (some are harder than others without a doubt). We control this choice and we control what we choose to put into our bodies.

    Sunday at the store I am putting my groceries on the conveyor belt and my the register display is titled so the ladies in line behind me can see the running total. One of them (a rather large lady) commented that my bill wouldn't be so high if I didn't buy that fancy gourmet stuff (Kashi cereal, Luna bars and vitamins). I politely replied that I buy that every week and said it was the exercise videos that made it more this week. She and her friend (another very large lady) laughed and said like those were going to do any good. Well, I wasn't sure if it was an actual dig at me or just their victim response. I told her that I have lost 20 pounds this year by getting off my butt and paying attention to what I eat. I looked at their cart...real Lays potato chips, donuts, real soda (not diet) and frozen pizza. I said I choose to live better. They seemed really p.o.ed at that point.

    Question -- why inquire into someone else's business if you cannot look into the mirror yourself? I know I used to get really unhappy with friends who were healthier and told me that it was up to me. Me? I am an emotional eater...victim here! We all make the choice, huh?

    3096 days ago
  • HPYGRL09
    This is sooooo true. When we accept responsibility for ourselves, we can finally do something about it!

    3096 days ago
    (ROUND OF APPLAUSE!!) Well said!
    3096 days ago
  • MARTY19
    emoticon for you. I take responsiblity for everything I do and that includes my eating. I've stopped saying I had a hard day or I'm stressed. I know other ways of dealing with the pressures of life other than eating. I feel it is a cop-out to say these things. When I eat junk I accept the reasons and responsibilitiy.
    Thanks for saying this.

    3096 days ago
    I likesd that I need to keep that in mid because I find myself quilty from time to time also and you know what we do do need eat the less and focus on the healthy foods we are eating.
    3096 days ago
  • EM4488
    Yeah! I love your blog! It is OUR DECISION!
    I want to yell at people who 100% blame society. We make our own choices for EVERYTHING we put in our mouths! We decide whether to cook, eat tv dinners or get take out.
    Granted, kids don't have as much say, but then it's the PARENTS duty. (The kids are not obese b/c of video games, they're obese b/c their parent just fed them chicken nuggets, fries and an extra large soda!!)

    I have had fast food ONCE in the last 18 months. That is CHOICE and it's possible to avoid the stuff. Sometimes it's not as convienient, but is it worth compromising health??

    Thanks for the blog! Loved it!
    3097 days ago
    You are so right!
    Our society has gotten to the point where we look to blame and sue EVERYBODY.
    I read just yesterday where Frito-Lays is making their bags of chips BIGGER, cause the economy and the cost of stuff has lowered so that means they are willing to give us,LOL on the GIVE, more product. What a bunch of hooey!

    We are sue happy, and want to make a buck at someone elses expense and we also want to blame "others" for our faults. If the unhealthy fast food industry did not have people knocking down their doors for their "junk food" they would get the message and change their menus, but that isn't happening none to fast.

    Thanks for your take, always a well put blog that you give your friends here at SP.

    Have a great day!
    I'm not gonna blame you for the donut I ate this morning, LMAO

    Really, I'm not gonna sue you either

    Just joking, I did NOT have a donut, either!
    3097 days ago
    You are SO right, my friend!
    We need to eat less and focus on the healthy foods we are preparing and eating.
    When we eat mindlessly (while watching TV is one example)
    we don't pay attention to what or how much we are eating.
    And soon:
    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    3097 days ago
    You seem to have a healthy dose of something that is becoming rare these days, common sense. Good for you !!!!
    3097 days ago
    Great Blog - I agree to the "Home cooking". We cook at home - 7 nights a week. If we want to eat out - it is at a sit down restaraunt. No more fast food.
    3097 days ago
    Amen Sister! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    3097 days ago
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