Government Cheese

Because They Are Poisoning Us

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I'm just another self-important loudmouth polluting the blogosphere...You?

Monday, May 09, 2005

The New USDA Food Pyramid

When that golden advice rains down from the government, it pours. They recently revealed this "new" Food Pyramid:

I mean, like WTF are we supposed to do with this?! We've been griping how long now for the USDA and Heart Association to do something about the dangerously arbitrary old pyramid that was thrown together by McGovern's ad hoc committee, and this, this is what they come up with?!

What are we supposed to eat? What are we supposed to tell our kids? (Didn't the Monica Lewinski scandal cause enough uncomfortable dinner table questions for us parents?)

Why is the Milk stripe so much wider than the Meat/Beans stripe? Why is Meat thrown in with Beans, or at least without chili powder and a bay leaf?

And why, friends, why, after the research of the last decade, does the first stripe, the big fat orange Grain stripe, remain the biggest recommendation, to be eaten "in relative abundance"? And the Oils the narrowest?

Click on the Headline Link above for an informative bit of cutting edge journalism.

Among its highlights:
"At first glance, consumers might find the USDA's graphic puzzling, since there's no explanatory text or pictures," said Sonja Tuitele of Wild Oats Markets, a chain of natural food supermarkets.

Hmmmm.... Does the Wild Oats Markets sell, oh, I don't know, Grains?

And this gadfly:
"It doesn't try to jam everything into a graphic that people don't understand," said registered dietitian Dawn Jackson Blatner of Northwestern Memorial Hospital's Wellness Institute.
[emphasis mine]

Yes, indeed, the new graphic is easy to understand without all those scientific facts "jammed" into it. Oy vey!

Of course, of course:
...Many food companies are embracing MyPyramid. For example, General Foods said it will put the graphic on 100 million boxes of Big G cereal brands.

I bet they will. Just as sexy women are placed in beer advertisements, and those cool R. Crumb cartoons were printed on LSD blotter paper, so will the new Hyperinsulinemia Rainbow be plastered on cartons of Cap'n Crunch. Maybe they could have toy syringes and blood glucose meters inside every box.

I am, perhaps, even more annoyed by that androgynous Marcel DuChamp-esque humanoid figure dancing up the staircase, pointy appendages clambering their way toward the vanishing summit. O, to be there when he/she falls over the other side of the multi-hued ziggurat.

No, strike that...What is most distressing is the amount of my tax dollars and mandatory 'donations' confiscated from food producers by the government to pay countless employees for several years, which resulted in this crap. Not to mention the obvious impropriety of hiring those food producers as consultants:

Critics have raised questions about Porter Novelli, the firm that helped create MyPyramid. Porter Novelli has food companies as clients, but both the firm and the government said the MyPyramid work was handled separately, so there was no conflict.

Oh, well, if they say there was no conflict over at the Potemkin Dietician Labs, I guess it's true!

The nutrition-conscious would do well to ignore this coloring book approach to consumerism altogether, and chow down on a nice thick salmon steak tonight.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sheesh, Adam, haven't you ever gone to a restaurant and have them bring crayons and color books for the kiddies? Well, now, they can save money and dispense with the color books! We only need the crayons!

6:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Please. Big G does not make Cap'n Crunch. So while Lucky Charms and Cocoa Puffs will continue to wrestle with their own conscience and put Food Pyramids on their whole grain cereals that moms and kids don't even care about, PepsiCo will continue to deliver the same Cap'n Crunch cereal they always have, and be proud of it.

10:43 AM  

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