An Extremely Misinformed Nutrition Article From The Atlantic Monthly

For anyone who wants to feel frustrated, you should read this recent cover story from the Atlantic Monthly:


http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2013/07/how-junk-food-can-end-obesity/309396/


 


The author argues against the movement that supports unprocessed, real food on the basis that it is hard to afford for low-income people (that part is legitimate) and on the additional basis that a lot of it is just as high in fat, calories and sodium as the "bad" processed food that the movement is railing against.  He doesn't distinguish, of course, between good and bad fat (and snidely dismisses the notion of "healthy fats" without furnishing any argument at one point), suggests, without citing any studies, that the body can't distinguish between regular table salt and good sea salt and generally adheres unthinkingly to the dogma that the way you lose weight is by lowering your calories, so that the article presents, as if this were damming, many high calorie counts for foods that are supposed to be good and unprocessed.  He argues, instead, how the big-food and fast-food companies are starting quietly to introduce "healthy," affordable, low-calorie, lower-fat foods, such as McDonald's Egg White Delight McMuffin and Premium McWraps (grilled chicken with spring mix and ranch dressing), and suggests that if we really want to fight obesity, we should be eating these things instead of unrealistically trying to get obese, low-income people to eat unaffordable "real" food.  It's pretty pathetic, because he interviews one guy for his nutritional information and otherwise cites not a single study for any of the specific and broad claims he makes about what's healthy and what isn't.  I'm pretty appalled that a respected publication like the Atlantic would publish this kind of rubbish, but I guess we know that the level of ignorance as far as diet in the general population is such that they wouldn't know better.  I'd have been perfectly okay with the article if he had made the basic point that real, unprocessed food is too expensive for many of the very people who are suffering most from the obesity epidemic, but then, instead of suggesting we should settle for "healthy" processed options instead, would have gone on to (1) analyze WHY real food is so expensive, (2) how the government subsidizes industrial farming and is in the pocket of Monsanto (he also apparently has no problem with GMOs; you should watch the video interview accompanying the article, which is even more outrageous than the article) and other such food giants instead of giving a helping hand to farms/companies that would give us good, real food rather than poisoning us and (3) suggest what we can do to lower the cost of unprocessed food so that it could become affordable.  Anyway, I posted a comment (under this same username), but anyone who's sufficiently outraged by this kind of airing of harmful ignorance and nonsense might also want to speak out against it.


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