Yes… a 2-liter of soda really does cost less than a head of broccoli. Believe it or not, something with a plethora of ingredients within a manufactured plastic bottle is less expensive than something with no ingredients or packaging. This is thanks to basic economics… supply and demand.
Take away #2: register to vote… for food. Every single time you beep a food item across the cash register you are casting a vote… you are saying, figuratively speaking, “I want THIS food item, NOT the other ones I left on the shelves.” These “votes” that we cast each and every day dictate price points in the grocery store. If more people wanted broccoli, the price of broccoli would go down. Unfortunately, though, the sugar industry is extraordinary powerful, and America is hooked.
Would you buy a product if it said 300% of your daily sugar allowance? What about 200% of your daily allowance? What if the product was exactly 100% of your entire daily allowance? You probably don’t think you would… although the vast majority of us do every single day. Looping back to the wholesale store, I was deeply saddened as I took note of the shopping carts around me. Seeing so much health-ignorance was depressing.
If dad knew that the canned tomato sauce he is buying contains 100% of his children’s daily sugar allowance per serving, do you think he would put it back on the shelf? If mom knew that the flavored oatmeal she’s eating after her morning workouts contains more than half of her daily sugar allowance, perhaps she would reconsider a healthier option. If you knew that the “healthy” cereal you are buying contains far more than their entire day’s sugar allowance, perhaps you would understand that you aren’t buying breakfast… you’re buying dessert.
This is the one that drives me crazy, though: if they knew that the diet, zero-calorie and zero sugar containing soda actually contained the same exact caloric and sugar values as the original brand, they probably wouldn’t believe they were making a health conscious decision.
Very few people understand how much sugar they should be ingesting on a daily basis, and even fewer have a grasp on how to quantify that number. Food labels depict sugar content in terms of grams, but how many grams of sugar should you strive to have each day? Have you ever noticed that the sugar industry is not required to put a daily percentage on food labels? Red flag, don’t you think?
Take away #3: 80% of all food items in the world have added sugar, and is the unequivocally so the biggest contributing factor to the public health crisis our society now faces. Sugar is everywhere… yes, even in the zero-calorie soda I referenced earlier. The labeling laws in this country are atrocious. The fact that the sugar industry is not required to list daily percentages on food labels is just the beginning.
Be sure to check out Part 3 of this blog post to learn more about our country’s labeling laws and the legislation that governs the food industry.