Tag Archives: food

Food – Prompt 1

 

After reading Americans’ love of snacks has spread far beyond that bag of chips the definition of snacking is more than just a term used for food. According to this article the term snacking refers to not only our consumption of light eating, but also our consumption of light breaking of social media, reading, or distracting us from necessary things to be done. The information is not so much concerning, but it is definitely an eye-opening concept that expands our understanding of snacking. If people were less well informed than me they would probably argue that snacking is better than eating large meals, which happens to be a misconception of snacking. Though this argument is obviously not valid as snacking leads us to intake less calories in small intervals and metabolize it quickly.

After reading Obesity and Other Health Concerns Lead Food Companies to Step Up Health and Nutrient Claims it is shocking to only now know how and why a “healthy lifestyle” is marketed. As a consumer this information is important to know and consider because we make choices every day that are influenced by labels and marketing. As the article explains there are numerous regulations to food labeling and what comes with those regulations. Since these regulations are implemented more and more companies are capitalizing on the regulations by mentioning things like organic, vegan, etc. regardless of the amount that product truly contains. We live in a health craze society and things like this make it easy for us to simply select certain foods by just labels. For the less well informed they may argue that companies have to include everything on labels, which is absolutely true. Though the danger in this argument is that companies are required to include all a products contents even the slightest amount. So when you see “organic” or “less calories” or any other labels plastered on the front of a product, how much that product adheres to this label could be a tiniest amount.

After reading Poll says majority of Americans support menu labeling it is quite surprising that more than 50% of people want to have their meals or food labeled in restaurants. I find this more surprising for fast food restaurants than other types of restaurants because fast food is just that, FAST FOOD. The expectation of their food is obviously greater in calories than others. However, it is good to allow consumers to make informed choices of which meal is better off for them than others by disclosing all information. For the less informed I would expect the argument that we are better off having menu labels than not having them. I would expect that some consumers would be surprised with the amount of people who prefer labels to not.

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Food Prompt 2

I’m just going to come right out and say that my eating habits are probably considered really unhealthy. However, after reading Why “Everything in Moderation” Doesn’t Work, I was definitely more aware of the food i was putting in my body. Quite often, I am short on time and grab something quick and cheap on the go. I normally don’t even keep track of what foods I eat at all, meaning some weeks I will cook all week and others I won’t cook at all. It just depends on the day and what my plans are. After taking this class and reading this article specifically, I have learned that my unhealthy eating habits can not be justified by moderation anymore. Because I am young, I don’t really think about the effects that eating unhealthy can have on my body. Most CVD don’t develop until older ages so I have always just eaten whatever I want. This article really opened my eyes to my eating habits and how these things can really take a toll on your body If I were to start taking my eating habits seriously I think my first step would be to eliminate all sugary drinks from my diet. Soda and juice contain so much sugar and other “super villains” in such small amounts. After that I would probably cut out snacks and add more veggies to my diet. The article stated that you need far more “ordinary” food to cancel out the super villain food, so incorporating more veggies and nutrients in general would be a great start to changing my diet.

Food Prompt 2

After reading, “Why ‘Everything in Moderation’ Doesn’t Work”, it wasn’t very surprising to me the way people perceive eating in moderation actually isn’t good for them. I’m pretty guilty that I used to think like this, I made myself think that eating a bowl of fruit or salad could “cancel” out the gummy worms I ate that day. But I recently changed that mindset after realizing it was not helping with my weight and I was still consuming the sugar, fats, and calories that junk food has. Something else I learned was that even if you eat healthy, having a treat regularly creates an imbalance. I admit that I do at times eat what feels like “moderation,” but I am trying to work on that by cancelling out sugary, fatty, high-caloric foods. Since I am trying to be more physically active by doing weight training and cardio more often, I noticed that what I eat can impact my energy level while working out that day. Eating unhealthy foods made me tired more easily than when I ate something nutritious before working out. I appreciated that the article brought up, “We need to stop self-judging our morals based on our food choices…If you eat a healthful food, you are getting more healthful – you are neither a good nor bad person.” I believe the whole point of this article is to teach people that eating in moderation isn’t what they think it is. That by having some ice cream every day after eating healthy foods can affect you, and people need to start understanding that. However, we shouldn’t beat ourselves up if we have a treat once in a while.

Food Matters Prompt One

The three resources that I found most enlightening from the Food Matters page were “The Whiskey Boom’s Dirty Little Secret”, “Healthy Eating Index”, and “The Snackification of Everything”. From the first article, something new to me is that most whiskey companies do not make what they bottle. If the label says “bottled by [name of company]” or “produced by [name of company]” then the company put the whiskey in the bottle after the whiskey was produced elsewhere. Most likely, the whiskey was “actually made at a massive plant in southern Indiana, where each barrel holds about 63 gallons of aging bourbon,” (Reid, 2014). New information that I learned from the second article is that not all people have access to the same foods. For instance, a person living in Nebraska may not have as much access to fresh fish or sushi as a person living in Seattle. This is mainly due to socioeconomic factors and living location. In order to apply this to real life, the National Collaborative on Childhood Obesity Research (NCCOR) came up with a scoring system called “The Healthy Eating Index” to rank foods and meals. Something new I learned from the third article listed above is the newfound prevalence of snacking. The article says that “only 10% of Americans snacked three or more times a day in the late 1970’s, the figure had risen to 56% in 2010” (Akst, 2014). As I am currently in several Nutrition classes, I am very aware of the poor eating habits of Americans, however, I was not aware that many of these habits can be linked to snacking. This article goes on to say that snacking perhaps became so popular because the public likes the idea of a noncommittal relationship with food the way that they like the idea of a noncommittal relationship in other aspects of life.

None of this information is particularly concerning health wise other than the information on snacking. Mostly, these articles were very informative and made me feel as though I could make better decisions in the future. I would gladly tell me friends not to buy the more expensive whiskey and bourbon as it is basically the same as the cheaper stuff, and perhaps I would enjoy a debate over the idea of snacking and its relation to my generations favoritism of brevity over longevity. However, as I have just turned 20, I do not see myself having kids for a while, once I do I am sure I will find the Healthy Eating Index helpful. The one policy decision impacting people’s choices and health outcomes is the Healthy Eating Index. I am interested in Nutrition, and the fact that there is a way to measure the nutritional value of the foods that kids are ingesting is very important especially with the number of obese children on the rise. If people were less informed than me about these topics, they may be surprised. Some of my friends who enjoy expensive whiskey and bourbon may feel cheated as they have been paying more for the same quality of their favorite alcohol. Those with kids, especially overweight kids, may feel the need to research more on the Healthy Eating Index to best help their child. And those who are prone to snacking or to replacing meals with snack food may be interested in the snacking culture and may enjoy reading how it applies to American culture now.

Bibliography

Akst, D. (2014, December 19). The Snackification of Everything. Retrieved November 07, 2017, from http://www.latimes.com/opinion/op-ed/la-oe-akst-snacks-20141221-story.html

NCCOR. (n.d.). Retrieved November 07, 2017, from http://www.nccor.org/projects/hei/

Reid, C. (2014, December 31). The Whiskey Boom’s Dirty Little Secret. Retrieved November 07, 2017, from https://www.cbsnews.com/news/the-whiskey-booms-dirty-little-secret/

Does moderation work?

My reaction to this article was kind of shocking. Although, I was not completely shocked. I think that it is true what the author said about moderation and that it does not work; however, I do disagree with him about that it does not work at all. He seems to be saying that it does not work at all. In my opinion, I think that moderation does not always work for everybody because people feel differently everyday. Sometimes they may be dealings with different emotions and might eat a lot; therefore, I don’t think moderation always work for everyone. So, I think that moderation can work if people really want it to work. Practicing moderation can take time to get used to; it is not easy for people who just eat whatever they desire.

When people eat healthy food, they feel like they have earned the right to eat unhealthy food according to the article. I feel that this is the way for most people. I heard a lot of my friends saying something like, “I had a salad for lunch so I’m going all out” or something similar. It is unhealthy to do this according to the article; I agree because if people keep treating themselves with all the junk food then they’re not practicing moderation and it will harm their health. If people want to practice moderation, it should be controlled and in a more healthy and safe way.

For the not-very-moderate food week, I kind of see myself in it because sometimes I just eat whatever I want. There are days when I just want to eat something. To be honest, I do not watch out what I eat often. And I should watch out what food I choose to eat. And yes, I am practicing somewhat meaningless “moderation” because sometimes I just feel like I deserve food I shouldn’t eat like junk food. Practicing somewhat meaningless moderation can somewhat increase my risk of chronic, diet-related disease. I would say that if people want to practice moderation, it should be practiced safely because it can lead to health problems if they do not watch out what they’re putting into their bodies.

Challenge – Two options. Learn about an FDA decision that could hugely impact consumers!

Ok, so you’ve read about consumer protection and regulation. What? You HAVEN’T? Why don’t you visit the CP&R Matters page right now?!

Ok, so NOW you know a little bit about how regulation of industries can help protect people as consumers, AND can even help industries be safer and more viable.

Take a look at this piece by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) about what’s happening right now in the world of food labels – spoiler alert: It’s not good. The American public was supposed to have access starting in 2018 to better information about serving sizes, sugar, and other aspects of packaged products that are tasty, cheap, and fun but not all that great for our health. In fact, some food product manufacturers had already changed their labels to meet the new regulation’s requirements earlier. Now the Food and Drug Administration (the agency whose job it is to protect people by providing information about ingredients, allergens, and other things you want to know about packaged food choices) is planning to delay the new rules until at least 2020.

Here’s an example of a product with the new food label. Note the differences between it and an old/current label (meaning MOST package labels right now). Get a sense of WHY it’s more helpful for you as a consumer.

consumerhealthnewfoodlabelpic

Food labels CHALLENGE One: Try talking with someone you care about about what they know and understand about packaged food and beverage products. Ask them to look at an “old” label and this new one, for example, and have them tell you what they really want when it comes to food packaging info. Write a post discussing how the conversation went and what you learned by exploring food labels and information both on your own and with someone else. As always, use your username and Challenge as tags, and choose the Challenge category. (Oh, and UNchoose the uncategorized category!)

Food labels CHALLENGE Two: If you’re interested ENOUGH, and want to take action as a consumer to raise your voice, take a look at this “model letter” to the FDA Commissioner, provided by CSPI. Then visit the Federal Register Comment space for the labeling regulation delay, and add a comment of your own. Write a post that shares your comment, and discuss how it felt to be an active, informed, and aware citizen around this consumer health issue. As always, use your username and Challenge as tags, and choose the Challenge category. (Oh, and UNchoose the uncategorized category!)