Who should decide if your food is healthy? Do you think that the Food & Drug Administration should? Reason I ask is because this year (2018), the FDA is going to become more involved in considering what “healthy” means. They will also have input about the claims that food companies make.
On the surface, this sounds completely reasonable. The “FDA” name itself implies that it should have some say about food, but I’ve noticed their track record and it’s awful. Have you noticed that their interventions to fortify food don’t work that well? When they fortify cereal with folic acid, that’s a synthetic form of vitamin B9, it’s not naturally occurring. When they fortify milk with calcium, it’s not a very good form because it’s not highly bioavailable, and it can cause stomach upset.
Furthermore, I think that an agency that’s in charge of drugs, and funded by pharmaceutical companies should not simultaneously be in charge of food! Unless perhaps you want to look forward to Prozac Pop Tarts and Requip Rice Krispies!
😂 LOL those aren’t a bad idea actually!
If it wasn’t so sad, it would be hilarious! Scott Gottlieb, who is the Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, was speaking at the CNBC Healthy Returns Conference in New York a few days ago. In his speech posted at the FDA site, he said:
So, we’ll also consider how to depict “healthy” on the package so that consumers can easily find it, particularly when they may not have the time or the skills to examine all the information on a food package.
To address this, we’ve had discussions about whether there should be a standard icon or symbol for the word “healthy” that everyone could use on food packages.
We’ll be soliciting stakeholder input on whether this would be useful.
The commissioner actually looks like a nice, reasonable guy. I wish I could get a meeting with him! I’d tell him that his prior attempts to help out with obesity are failing pathetically. His changes to the food industry intended to reduce the incidence of heart disease, diabetes and chronic illness aren’t working either. I’m not a stakeholder, but I can tell you my input confidently… putting a “standard icon” on food packages is completely useless!
This will not ever work… not until his agency stops the genetic modification of our food and the spraying of it with hundreds of hormone-disrupting pesticides. Why don’t you start prioritizing that, hmm?!
I will now demonstrate how silly an icon is. I just downloaded this one that says “Hello I am a genius!” and assigned it to my article as you can see. Now all of you can assume it to be so! 😂
The FDA’s intention is noble, they want to make it easier for you to find foods that are good for you. Are we letting the same people who permit margarine dictate what’s “healthy” now?
So here’s the deal. They’re working towards making food manufacturers create an icon or symbol on all their labeling in order to meet new definitions of “healthy.” But some food makers cheat (not all of them) but for sure some of them are failing to disclose additives, MSG and bug parts. The industry is not the most ethical sort, and I bet a lot of them will be putting the new icon on their labels without doing a darn thing to make it “healthier.” Then you can pay a little extra for that pretty (but meaningless) badge on the label.
Do you want to eat nutrition, for real? Or do you prefer buying heavily refined and processed foods that have synthetic nutrients added to them, dressed up with lovely labels.
There’s a saying, “You can’t put lipstick on a pig.” Capiche? If you’ve never heard this rhetorical expression, it means that you can’t make superficial changes to disguise the true nature of something.
If you sense my frustration it’s because I’ve worked very hard my entire life, not just to buy real food, but to cook real meals, the kind that automatically come with nutrition. No icon needed!
Real food doesn’t have multi-million dollar campaigns to promote it, nor do the food labels have to be stamped with icons as “healthy” in order for you to know it. I’m not saying to eat kale every day, but if you need a “health” icon to know what’s good for you, we’re at a sad place in history.
First of all, a handful of food growers and manufacturers should behave with a little bit more integrity.
It’s up to you to make better choices.
If you want healthy food, don’t look for boxes with an icon!
Shop around the perimeter of the grocery store or go to a Farmer’s Market, buy organic where possible. Take real food home and cook it. Don’t rip open a fancy box that has an ingredient list of 45 things you can’t even pronounce, and then shove it in the oven just because some agency has stamped it with a label that says “healthy.” If you honestly think it’s okay to do that, then go ahead with the assumption that I’m pure genius!
Suzy Cohen, has been a licensed pharmacist for over 30 years and believes the best approach to chronic illness is a combination of natural medicine and conventional. She founded her own dietary supplement company specializing in custom-formulas, some of which have patents. With a special focus on functional medicine, thyroid health and drug nutrient depletion, Suzy is the author of several related books including Thyroid Healthy, Drug Muggers, Diabetes Without Drugs, and a nationally syndicated column.