One reason why America is overweight
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02-03-2011, 01:57 PM
One reason why America is overweight
I've noticed something while working for KFC. What I've noticed is that we have a problem with abundance, we toss food away left and right without thought. If a piece of chicken falls onto the counter we toss it, if someone brings back their food and doesn't want it we toss it, at the end of the night if we have extras we toss it.

I made the suggestion we should send it over to the homeless shelter every night, but of course unless I take it to corporate, who won't care either way, we'll continue our ritual of wasting food needlessly.

Which led me to an understanding of why America can be considered the fattest nation. You go into a Supermarket and there are like 15 different flavors of Pop Tarts, you see this abundance of food everywhere you go. You can't drive down the street without passing a fast-food place, and Americans see this and gorge themselves needlessly.

It has stopped being simply a ritual of nourishing our bodies properly, and has since become an all you can eat buffet 24/7. I won't get into how the food is made or other causes for America's obesity. But I do believe that this problem of abundance is a major issue. But how can we fix it? That's the challenge.
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02-03-2011, 02:09 PM
RE: One reason why America is overweight
It will soon fix itself. The abundance of food is an illusion.

Careful, you've taken my soapbox out of storage. Ask the other long-time members's not something you want me standing on! LOL

Seriously though, you should watch the movie, "Food Inc." I think you'd like it.

So many cats, so few good recipes.
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02-03-2011, 02:21 PM
RE: One reason why America is overweight
Americans aren't overweight. The rest of the world is anorexic.

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02-03-2011, 04:07 PM
RE: One reason why America is overweight
The primary reason for American's being over weight is poor dietary habits, lack of knowledge about food combining and well let's face it, gluttony!
Sit for awhile at any All You Can Eat, and you'll note the demographic who take full advantage of limitless quantity of cheap eats.

In large part no one but the consumer is responsible for their overweight status.
Fat bastards are responsible for eating themselves into being fat bastards allergic to exercise, other than bending the elbow and opening the jaw!

I'm tired to the gills of media and other special interests implying we are all responsible for what ails all of us! Personal responsibility is not a liability!

"When round dare to lose a pound."

I would further make the observation that America isn't overweight because we have an abundance of food in the retail market place. Rather, it's because we have an abundance of toxic chemical preservatives (as in Mayonnaise that stands to have a shelf life of years!), as well as dyes (Like Red Dye 40 that does not evacuate from the liver but rather remains therein and toxifies the consumer). Not to mention growth hormone and steroids fed to meat animals,when those chemicals are illegal for consumption by lay and professional athletes, because they're contrary to fair play and health, so as to remind us of that old adage; you are what you eat!
But so as to meet the demand for meat products and byproducts of meat animals, the supply is bolstered to grow faster and larger chemically!

So that we have no real cause to be surprised when 7 year old girls develop breasts and start their period having been told for years that milk does a body good! (Persuaded by lovely white lipped super models to boot) While in truth it does... but only if that body belongs to the calf! Rolleyes

As for the waste that restaurants contribute to, when they could donate to soup kitchens, food banks, etc...It's a matter of generator liability. If such products were to cause food poisoning there's potential for lawsuits. Founded or unfounded, especially when those left overs are being given to a community of the indigent, the potential for a quick buck in filing a claim such as that often precludes restaurants from taking the risk. They'd rather have the tax write off for loss of food, than risk the liability for a meager tax credit for charitable food gifting.

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03-03-2011, 01:07 AM
RE: One reason why America is overweight
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"We see you cry. We turn your head. Then we slap your face. We see you try. We see you fail. Some things never change."
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03-03-2011, 02:51 AM
RE: One reason why America is overweight
1) Milk is good and nutritious.

2) It is the quantity of food combined with the caloric density. It's easy to consume 4 500 Calorie donuts. Try doing the same thing with vegetables.

3) Chemicals may produce toxicity or affect general health, but obesity is not one of them. As stated above it has to do with caloric density of food.

4) Eating right is easy. Avoid processed foods and grains. Consume vegetables, meats, fruits, nuts, fish, eggs, milk, and etc. As much as you want.
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03-03-2011, 09:55 AM
RE: One reason why America is overweight
(03-03-2011 02:51 AM)Sacrieur Wrote:  4) Eating right is easy. Avoid processed foods and grains. Consume vegetables, meats, fruits, nuts, fish, eggs, milk, and etc. As much as you want.

This last line I don't quite agree with. I think it is more accurate to say "if you have the means, then eating right is easier".

This whole topic hits on a peeve of mine that I've only been aware of since I had kids: farm subsidies. And, specifically, corn subsidies. In the US we subsidize the beejeezus out of corn. There are several impacts from this, including:
- higher prices for vegetables that are not named "corn" because there is not as much incentive to grow them;
- high fructose corn syrup in just about every thing you buy -- just try to avoid in the US, I dare you;
- livestock is now feed cheap cornmeal instead of grain which makes dirt cheap fast food possible and is the reason there is a fast food restaurant on damn near every single corner in the US. Oh, and because cornmeal is not their normal diet the livestock is also fed a steady diet of antibiotics.

All of this has had significant impacts on the American waistline as well as our overall cost of health care by increasing the number of obese people and creating an epidemic in childhood obesity and diabetes rates.

And yet, conservatives are screaming about tax payer money chipping in on health care without saying "boo" about some of the causes of our problems. Probably because the large money interests that fund these "grass roots" outrages are making a mint off farm subsidies and are concerned they are not getting their cut on health care.

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03-03-2011, 10:35 AM
RE: One reason why America is overweight
I would add that corn is also used to produce ethanol, (burns faster than gas during warm months. Thickens and causes engine wear during cold) which is a huge incentive for farmers to forgo producing other crops, such as wheat. Which is starting to be imported at a more rapid rate and is why brand name wheat bread has skyrocketed in price.

Certainly the economy lends to eating on the cheap, which provides for the worst ingredients and the hardest for the body to process and utilize throughout and as a consequence contribute to poor health and any number of chronic diagnosis.
That being said, it's not hard to go to a public library and research nutrition and food combining techniques, so as to eat healthy even on a limited food budget. Flash frozen vegetables and fruits are always on sale in most markets. Soy curd is a great alternative (And far more healthy) than purchasing meats, and when seasoned well and which isn't expensive either, tastes great. There's also meat substitutes, of the soy variety, that are sold in boxes and pre-seasoned so that all one need do is add hot water.
If one has the land, even a mere acre, they can grow a garden and learn to can even through reading those aforementioned resources available from the library.

There are certainly causes behind gaining weight. However, if one is willing even simple exercises at home insure there is virtually no excuse to whine about being fat. Control your food. Don't let food control you.

Lobbyists buy what ultimately ails Americans through food manufacture in this country. We don't have to buy what they're selling, if we choose not to. We can cast aspersions, blame this and that, read the ingredients do the research and see easily enough we're being poisoned, dyed, preserved, roided and hormoned literally to death.
As consumers when we come to know that, if we care to, we can choose not to do that to ourselves.
Americans are always ready to blame someone else and then bitch something needs to be done. Meanwhile, it is what it is and the only one's able to do something now, is the individual consumer. But D.C. power, lobbyists, special interests, big Pharma, farming lobbies, know we're for the most part too busy, or too lazy to make the effort. A fact made obvious when frozen scrambled egg's came on the market.

If someone's life is too busy to scramble an egg, they certainly don't need to worry about what's in their food because the stress in the life is going to kill them first.

Feed yourself as if you love yourself.
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03-03-2011, 11:19 AM (This post was last modified: 03-03-2011 11:22 AM by Stark Raving.)
RE: One reason why America is overweight
Further to what BnW is saying, the subsidies provided to farmers makes access to properly raised beef/chicken/pork nearly impossible for the average consumer. And by properly, I mean raised on a normal, healthy food. (Cows, for example, eat grass, not grain. Corn, as well as other grains, are just not what their bodies are designed to ingest.) BUT, because subsidies are provided only to farmers (the real word here should be factories) that follow guidelines laid out by the very fatories that monopolize the food industry, farmers who raise meat in a healthy way are not only ineligible for these subsidies, but they are not even allowed to sell what they produce in some cases.

I'm not trying to be a "Me Monster" here, but I can give some perspective from my own experience. I raise chickens, both for meat and eggs. They run around my yard, eating up all the things they should. Grass, bugs, grains, and anyting else that appeals to their whim. They are healthy, I don't practice "bio-security", and the only chickens that ever die here are either by my hand, or from old age. They've been analysed, and on average are about three times richer in nutrients than factory raised birds. They are free of antibiotics. They taste amazing. And the risk of things like salmonella is far lower, because they are slaughtered by hand. That means everything is done carefully, and cleanly.

So here's the kicker: I CANNOT sell chickens to anyone. I don't follow the policies laid out by the government. At the end of the day, that means the YOU cannot buy my chickens. The same goes for eggs, beef etc. So you and I are restricted by the very government that is in place to protect us from eating well. I am in Canada, but the practice is very similar in the US.

So what's my solution? (Pulling out my soap-box) Fight those policies. Fight for your right to choose where your food comes from. Practice your right to produce your own food. Demand the right to buy food from your neighbor instead of the grocery store. Demand that corn is labeled "corn" on ingredient labels, instead of Xanthan gum, maltodextrin, invert sugar, fructose, modified starch, and HUNDREDS of others. Ask questions like, "why is there corn in my ketchup, peanut butter, wheat bread, and fruit juice (yes, fruit juice)??"
Lastly, support people who grow food, and remember, if it doesn't actually look like corn, it's not food, it's an additive. We can't go to the big food companies (Kraft, General Mills, Tyson) and tell them to change what they put into what we are buying. We have to stop buying the products that contain the things we don't want in our food.

If you look at the post and say, "oh shit, here goes Stark again" and end up just skimming, that's ok. But if nothing else, read BnWs post twice. He made points that are IMPERATIVE to a healthy nation. Even a healthy PLANET! (Plus, he was better at not being so preachy. LOL)

EDIT: Read Gassys post twice too!

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03-03-2011, 12:17 PM
RE: One reason why America is overweight
Also I listed it as "one reason" that America is overweight, not the sole reason. The issue with having an abundance of food is that we don't know how to handle it. We've moved past the hunter-gatherer stage where we had to actually go out and get our own food (lots of calories burned there, lolz) and now we can sit in a car, go up to a drive-thru window, and order a 12 piece bucket of chicken.

Do many Americans care what is in their food? Hell no, they only care if it is EASY. Now we can go to the store and get a meal we only need to microwave, we can go through a drive-thru and get it handed to us pre-made and in a bag. We don't have to work for it anymore.

Moving on, if you go into any fast-food establishment now you'll see on the menu the calories listed for each meal (required by law now, it's beautiful really). The first thing I want to point out is that most fast-food meals, even if they're small, contain the calories you should be eating in an an entire DAY, not in a meal.

Yet people will still buy these disgusting meals because they're quick, they're easy, and there is a plentiful supply of it. It'll still be there tomorrow, the day after, the day after that, in our minds there will never be a time when we have no fast-food because there's just so god damn many of them!

Which was the point I was trying to make earlier on, as an example of ONE REASON why America is overweight. I also said I'm not going to get into the discussion of what we put into our food because that's another topic in itself.
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