"We're Living in a Food Carnival"

Submitted by Eternity on Wed, 08/05/2009 - 11:16.

“The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite”
Amy Goodman interviews Dr. David Kessler on Democracy Now!
 

A new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns that the direct medical costs of obesity total about $147 billion a year. That amounts to nine percent of all US medical costs. It’s also over $50 billion more than the annual spending on cancer. In the midst of this national focus on obesity, today we’ll speak to David Kessler, who has spent the last seven years trying to understand how the food industry has changed American eating habits, made certain foods difficult to resist, and helped create the country’s number one public health issue. Watch video below or click here to learn more.

thanks Eternity

 I'm home from work for awhile, with two boys who require "eyes on" every minute! I've been missing DemocracyNow! in the quiet comfort of my office at lunch. but, i will definitely look this up.

I step back and look at what our food industry has become and how what we eat damages us so badly and I just don't understand how people can be so callous to make a dollar. 

That and we have become so detached from what we eat. My boys saw a picture of a cow on the milk carton (we eat organic collectively farmed) and I commented that their milk came from cows. They eeked and said they didn't want that milk!!! god help us.

The human history of ordinary eating

Until Europeans came along, Africans--Asians--Indians, did not (by and large) drink cow's milk.  And even today, a very large percetile of non-Europeans (people of color) are lactose intolerant; having a difficult time digesting milk...myself included.  In otherwords, most of the world's populations lived quite well without dairy farms.  And even amongst Europeans, say 150 years ago, they were not drinking milk and cheese like it was going out of style.

It used to be standard issue for people to have family gardens, providing themselves with their own food supply.  I remember when I was a child, neighbors, relatives and friends were always bringing over foods that they cooked themselves, often times using ingredients straight from their own garden.  This wasn't Pacific-Northwest, snobby gourmet, this was working-class people acting normal.

My how things have changed.

And furthermore, why do we take cancer and stroke seriously in this nation, but turn around and laugh at obesity; treating it like a minor inconvenience or vanity, instead of the lethal weapon that it is?  As testament to this, one of my sisters, age 48, just got forced into semi-retirement because she's so fat she hardly get up a flight of stairs.  Her ankles are often swollen so bad she can hardly walk.  She's on all kinds of medication.  Her joints are shot.  And surprise, surprise, she's diabetic.  Starting next month, instead of being a fully autonymous tax-paying citizen, she'll be come a [partial] tax burden, because she'll start getting an SSI check for obesity related disease.

Social Security at 48?  Yet how many Americans are either in the same boat, or rapidly headed down that road?

But in my family, there are six siblings total, 4 males, 2 females.  All of my brothers, none over 50, have diabetes.  All are horribly obese.

I'm 43.  I don't eat meat.  Though, about once every couple of weeks I might eat a piece of salmon.  I rarely eat dairy.  I walk 3-5 miles per day.   I don't smoke.

Last summer, one of my cousins came to visit.  She saw me standing next to my nephews and thought I was their brother.  When I told her that I was 20+ years older than my nephews, that their mother was my sister, she couldn't believe it.  But I don't think I look THAT young.  Still, appearance is not the issue here.  It's added plus, but what's going on inside the body is really what matters.

Many of us are not to blame for being toxic and obese.  The food industry is immeasurably corrupt.  But we are responsible to change.   Because this, I believe, is a national security threat that deserves the highest level of focus and implementation.

Somehow we have to find a way to turn this thing around.