LISTEN UP BIG-CO! RETURN TO FAT, sugar is the new enemy
This slab of butter may save your life.
A rippling and rallying cry for a change in our diet across institutions and the media is making itself increasingly loud in recent years.
Small wonder, it takes little to notice that we as a population are fatter and sicker than we have ever been. Even if you are the most reclusive of couch potatoes, the television or Internet has most certainly not spared you from the message. The barrage of solutions targeting every angle of our health problems that the commercial world has dumped on us in the recent decade has at times been futile and most times disorienting . If you remember the diet books that were all the rage in the 90s: South Beach, Atkins, The Zone, The Caveman diet, anyone remember the Cabbage Soup diet, or the Grape diet? That and the immense popularity of Dr Oz on television, the yoga craze, slimming centres, and the rise of the mega gyms, you know you have either been thinking about this or subconsciously reprogrammed to say that something is definitely wrong (so that you can consume the new headlines). But how can it be?
The Problem As a child of the 80s, I was schooled in the wisdom of the pyramid. Eat more carbs, less fat: Fat is the enemy. A whole generation lived and breathed the pyramid. A whole fat-free (though high sugar) industry pandered to the rhetoric and recent statistics by The International Food Information Council's 2013 Food & Health Survey indicate that 69% of consumers strongly or somewhat agree with the statement "I try to eat as little fat as possible," prove we got the message, a little too well.
In recent years, the increased problems, have prompted researchers to question our most revered pyramid.If the pyramid is so sacred, assuming we are all moderately health conscious, why are we all suffering? The diet books of the 90s sought to turn it upside down and inside out. Suddenly, carbs are the enemy and protein is in. And now, the authorities are telling us to eat more fat. It now seems like everything is fair game.
To be fair, there is always some grain of truth in every message. I am inclined by personal experience swinging helter skelter with the diet trends, to see some sense in the new fat-friendly propaganda of the 21st century. Research supports experience that some fat in the diet satisfies tastebuds sooner and bellies longer. It also seems to explain why french women can load up on those croissants on a daily basis yet stay so svelte. Sugar must ultimately be reduced if we are to manage our serum cholesterol, lipid levels, overall responsiveness, calm and health. And calorie management really works.
For most of the educated world that reads their food labels, I think we'll come out ok. As we grapple with the confusion of what to eat, I feel most people in the modern world will eventually find the right balance for themselves- in accordance with their individual needs and constitutions.
My greatest concern is for those straddling the poverty line. How soon can BigCo respond as a whole to the new need for better nutrition for the poor? The days of fat-free, high sugar must be numbered, to give the poor a chance to obtain affordable food that won't also create a burden for society. Time to move faster Big Co.