The Politics of Food Safety

Posted on October 3, 2011 by

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Is the FDA really looking out for us in the way they say they are, or are we on our own so to speak? 

If you haven’t seen the documentary, Food, Inc you should do so as soon as possible. The movie opens by stating that the way we eat in this country has changed more in the last 50 years than since, well, forever. And these changes have not been for the better. The film touches on every step of the food process, from manufacturing, to farms to smaller companies struggling to find legitimate order fulfillment services.

It’s an eye-opening film and requires the viewer to ask: What is the FDA doing? Isn’t this their job, to ensure quality food? Why aren’t they doing anything?

FDA Regulations — Do They Really Exist?

The problem appears to be that the FDA and the USDA are both government organizations and both are helping to hide the infrastructure of our nation’s food situation. With only a few corporations controlling the production of food for the entire country, they are doing all they can to put profit above our health, the well-being of American farmers, the safety and proper treatment of workers and even our own environment.

So, what exactly is the FDA regulating? The FDA, being a branch of the government is about profit, probably more now than in the past. And, while they are concerned with making a profit, food is rising as the lead cause of disease in our nation.

How?

We are eating more processed foods than ever in this country. The foods are so processed in fact, they hardly resemble food any more. All of the ingredients on the back of a box of Oreos or Cheez-its that we can’t pronounce? They’re called metabolic disruptors and our bodies can’t cope with these in excess. These chemicals are thought to cause diseases like cancer, diabetes, brain damage and can lead to problems for newborns when eaten by pregnant women. Furthermore, processed foods are just that — overly processed. Any nutrition or natural food value has been stripped throughout the manufacturing process until we’re left with just chemicals.

What Can We Do?

One of the reasons the FDA continues to get away with faulty regulations, is because it sells. Processed foods are cheap, convenient and unbelievably ubiquitous.

Sadly, changing eating habits is a lot harder than it sounds. Healthy foods are more expensive, require more effort to purchase and sometimes even require planning ahead. Additionally, we’re geared towards eating socially, and end up eating foods for which we cannot read labels when we’re out on the town.

Moderation is key. Do what you can to cut down on the amount of times you eat out and gradually introduce healthier foods into your lifestyle. Try buying organic and local whenever possible including produce that’s in season. It will be cheaper, taste better and be free of excess ethanol gas. Stay informed, find ways to get involved and spread the word. Changing the way we eat starts with the individual. Until the people change, nothing can be done.

Posted in: Family safety