You can follow the links to Part One and Part Two. A brief summary:
Excitotoxins are really bad for your brain.
BPA is really bad for your entire body.
And yet, these things are in our food. All the extra junk and additives and
dyes and hormones and blech that are filling our food are there for a reason.
Why? Why are we consuming them, both via our pocketbook and our mouths? Answer:
BPA alone is a $10 BILLION-a-year product. Never mind if they're selling the
Grim Reaper, companies don't want to give up that kind of cash. The only way we
can stop it is to stop buying it. For myself, I'm proud to say that I haven't
used the can opener for a week! Now check this out:
"The U.S. Public Interest Research Group (U.S. PIRG) Wednesday released
to Twinkies," a review of agricultural subsidies that shows that since
1995, approximately 16.9 BILLION dollars in taxpayer money have gone
toward supplementing four of the country's most common food additives - corn
syrup, high fructose corn syrup, corn starch and soy oils." Food Safety
News, September 2011
Did you know your tax dollars were subsidizing Twinkies and prepackaged
In contrast, healthy foods like oranges and spinach receive no
regular federal funding, with the exception of apples. For apples, the
government spent about .01 percent of its agricultural subsidy money between
1995 and 2010.
If you run the numbers, and Food Safety News did, this means that if all the
taxpayer money spent on agricultural products were distributed back to the
consumers, you would get about $7 to spend on junk food, and about 11 cents to
spend on an apple. Since organic apples are running well over a dollar each at
our grocery store, this wouldn't get one very far...
This means junk food is subsidized at a rate of nearly sixty four
times that of... just apples. Not produce in general. Just apples.
Apparently all we need is a tenth of an apple a year, and all those beet and
radish and kale and chard and spinach farmers better pull themselves up by
their bootstraps, 'cause giant agribusinesses need money for corn syrup.
I read those numbers, and then I read these interesting food bits:
1) "Currently there are approximately 3,794 different additives used in or
on food, 3,640 of those are used purely for cosmetic purposes, 63 are used as
preservatives and 91 as processing aids. It has been estimated that some 200,000
TONS of food additives are used annually, that 75% of the western diet
consists of processed food and, that each person consumes an average of 8 to 10 pounds of food additives per
year." Committee on Mental Health, Mental Retardation and
Developmental Disabilities 2007
(I also found this list of Food Additives. Long!)
2) "U.S. Department of Agriculture data show that today we’re eating more
of everything. By far the largest increase has been in the consumption of fats
and oils, with a 63 percent jump over a 33-year period, from per capita annual
consumption of about 53 pounds
to about 86 pounds."
Mother Earth News
3) "In 2000, the per capita consumption of high fructose corn syrup
was 63.8 pounds."
USDA Profiling Food Consumption in America
So, it isn't too tough to follow:
1) Our government gives huge subsidies to the manufacturers of "junk
2) This makes junk food cheap, cheaper than apples and much cheaper than
3) Then, those junk foods are actually engineered to leave
you wanting more and feeling unsatisfied.
4) We have a myriad of health epidemics linked to crappy food habits.
Remember Cuba Gooding Junior's "Show me the money"
rant? (You know you want to watch it again). Well, we have to stop showing
agribusiness the money. We need to do the work to get our tax dollars out of
their hands, and we have to stop paying for their products at our stores. It is
the only language they understand. It isn't enough that they contribute to the
obesity, heart disease, and diabetes epidemics (to name a few). They will only
stop if the money stops flowing.
Last thing! And maybe a little off subject... I have a friend who went to
culinary school, and he gave me the heads-up on this one. There is something
called Flak-Mor that is rolled into a lot of commercial pastry and bakery
products. I have searched and searched for images but am not turning anything
up... I wonder if the company manages to delete them all? According to my
friend, who got to hold it and roll it and squeeze it, it feels and looks
like grey modeling clay, but it rolls out really well, nice and smooth, and
makes your baked goods really flaky! And yummy! And leaves you... wanting more!
I'll stick with butter please.