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Fight for Your Food Rights

Going Head to Head with the Food and Beverage Industries


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  • One thing that wasn't pointed out in 2005, the date of this article, nor currently is how BIG the food & beverage industries influence is in setting our 'guidelines'. The guidelines that most nutritionist & health professionals spout as gospel. The grain, sugar, beverage, etc councils have much more sway in setting these guidelines. The guidelines after being shopped around to these incredibly well funded, often subsidized 'councils' don't reffect health, the reflect pocket lining special interest money.
    Notice the date on this article? Written in 2005. The message is still just as timely now as it was back then. In fact it may make even more impact since we can make good use of social media to stir things up to help ultimately make them better. Bring on the "Sun Butter" (sunflower seed nut butter) or is that not allowed now either. Think they're seeds rather than a true nut. Either way, we have alternatives although the price of Sun Butter is a whole lot too high imo. The bottom line is we are in charge of what we put in our mouth. Can't blame others like the restaurants for giving larger portions. Can't blame the food manufacturers even when they're targeting children with their ads. Just learn to say no and make the more healthy choice for yourself and your family.
  • reply to comment by CRONKSTAIRS: As far as school kids taking a peanut butter sandwich for lunch, most children can't do this as it is FORBIDDEN due to the large % of children with peanut allergies.
    I agree with most people that we can't blame the food industry, advertising etc for our obesity although in the case of restaurant portions, they have increased so gradually that many people have not realized how large they've become until it was pointed out strongly. In some cases it was beyond the point where they already had the obesity problem.
  • I think some people are forgetting money issues. We qualified for free lunch at school, it was better for my mom and us for my sister and I to eat at school than to pack lunch, it allowed her to buy us more food for dinner and clothing. Not everyone has the luxury of a disposable income.
  • For those who think parents are slackers about packing lunches-try reading the requirements that some school systems put on them. No, you can't pack them milk because there's no way to keep it cold. And you don't know how hormone-ridden the school's milk is since the brand changes regularly. A peanut butter sandwich might be cheap, but it's not allowed in a public school. If a teacher thinks that kid isn't getting enough food, they can take it away and make him get a school lunch.

    So get off your high horse, folks. The point the article is making is that kids' food habits form young. If school is teaching them to eat pizza every Friday, cheeseburgers every Tuesday, and to get a cookie with every meal then that's what they are learning. It's a lifetime process to unlearn these things, though it can be done. As all of us can attest. No one is saying that this is gets you off the hook for making your own choices. It's telling you to beware what schools and restaurants are teaching you and your kids so you can counteract it.
  • Keep in mind that many schools actually do not ALLOW parents to pack their chldren's lunches - why? Food allergies. Peanut butter sandwiches are pretty much OUT in the district where I live because there's too much of a chance that some kid with an allergy will get a hold of it and then, boom, hospital trip. (You know how kids are - they often trade food items at lunch, or at least I did!)

    You're damned if you do and damned if you don't.
  • Yes, I know that individuals are ultimately responsible for their behavior. However, I am quite intelligent. I’m very persistent and I’m fortunate to have many resources available to me. Many others are not as lucky.

    Yet, even I am often surprised by the ingredients in my groceries when I finally have time to read them. I’m annoyed at the labels designed to confuse and hide the facts. I resent the fact that I have to continue to carefully monitor labels on items that once were fine and suddenly have changed their ingredients without any warning.

    So my wish is that corporations with time, money and resources would HELP us follow a healthy lifestyle and not scatter roadblocks and detours in our path. Perhaps that is too much to ask when profit is the ultimate motive.
  • don't like the blame game. If you don't like it don't eat there. Schools should be better but there is always the opp to take your lunch too
    Boy, look at all the self-righteous comments below! Yes, ultimately we as individuals are responsible for what we put into our mouths, but let's not discount the power of carefully researched and thought out marketing influences. We are human and prone to human weaknesses, and the food industry has done considerable research to capitalize on those weaknesses. I know that I do much better with my weight loss when I do not beat myself up -- and part of that is recognizing that my ways of coping are borne out of the influences I had growing up. These habits are hard to break, which is a big part of why so many of us are obese -- not because we're unmotivated, lazy, undisciplined slobs, which is what is suggested when articles such as this one are dissed. I only wish this article were better written and included references to some of the studies done.
    It's unbelievable to see what parents pack in their children's lunches these days. Too many choices, lots of packaged snacks, sugary drinks, and packaged lunches in plastic containers containing processed, junky cheese, crackers, and meat. Some people blame the cost of healthy food for that, but I think it's a matter of just doing what's convenient. Why aren't these children buying milk at school? And a peanut butter sandwich does not cost all that much.
  • We have free will. No one says you have to eat the bigger portion. Besides that, parents should be feeding their children at home, as well as eating there themselves.
    I have a lot of problems with blaming the food industry for obesity. The choice lies with the individual. I do agree that school lunch is often a choice of "bad" or "worse". That is unacceptable.
  • I too disagree with this is my fault that I am obese...not any government agency, not any fast food business, not anyone else but me. I made my choices...albeit poor choices, as I am now making a choice to do something about it. We need to stop blaming our choices and behaviors on someone else! Sadly, it looks like the last generation that really believed in personal accountability was the generation before mine. Lets try to set an example instead of placing blame...
  • I disagree with much of this article. For the most part, personal decisions is to blame for obesity, not the availability of the variety of food we are blessed to have in this nation.
  • I do not believe in finger pointing. You are responsible for what you and your children put in your bodies.

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