Huffpost Healthy Living
The Blog

Featuring fresh takes and real-time analysis from HuffPost's signature lineup of contributors

Nancy Deville Headshot

Victims of the Food Industry, Part One

Posted: Updated:

What if crack was legal and you could buy it in big air-conditioned warehouses? It would come in fun boxes emblazoned with grinning cartoon characters. Or you might prefer carbonated liquid forms in sexy red cans. Ads would tout these crack drinks with hot glossy-lipped girls in bikinis. There would be literally thousands of variations of the crack you so desire.

You start to realize that you're using too much crack, but it's so hard to resist because when you were a toddler your mom handed you a baby bottle full of crack and put you in front of the TV where you watched ad after ad about crack that were all brilliantly conceptualized by clever people on Madison Avenue. Besides that, using crack is socially acceptable, supported by government subsidies and doctors. It's served in schools, hospitals, entertainment venues such as zoos, theme parks, movie theaters, sports arenas and so on. No matter where you go, you can buy and consume crack... It's inescapable.

But by the time you're an adult you're suffering serious health effects of a lifetime of use. You're told to use less. So you go into the air-conditioned warehouse and try to buy less of it, but most of the time you buy way too much, take it home and binge on it.

Now people laugh at you because you're a serious crack user. They call you names and tell you that you need to use willpower, and keep repeating that you need to use less.

I'm not really talking about crack, of course. I'm painting a picture of what it's like for people who have grown up eating a diet that is pretty much exclusively made up of food made in factories and who, as a result of this diet, suffer from obesity, Type 2 diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, and stroke.

Factory-food products are made, for the most part, from real food that is broken down in laboratories and factories, using heat and chemical solvents, into basic components. The components are then mixed with colored dyes, preservatives, synthetic vitamins (to make users feel virtuous) and hundreds of other substances, especially genetically altered, high-gluten refined grains, refined white sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, mineral-stripped salt, partially hydrogenated vegetable oils, and drug pushers' dream, the highly addictive flavor enhancer MSG. Teams of chemists and food flavorists manipulate the chemical composition of recipes so the resulting products titillate taste buds, and have appealing bite characteristics and mouth feel, along with a maximum shelf life.

Although factory foods promise good health, beauty, and satisfaction, they lack the life-sustaining nutrients necessary to maintain healthy metabolic processes, and are mostly foreign and toxic to human physiology. (I have hundreds of references in my book Death by Supermarket if you want to learn why the human body does not do well on a diet of factory-produced food.) The heartbreaking reality is that rather than feeling sated by eating these products, the resultant unnatural cravings provokes people to binge insatiably.

I've been preaching the victimization of fat people for the last ten years. Whenever I bring up the subject, the response is immediate, heated, and vitriolic: Fat people need to "take responsibility." But the "take responsibility" stance is exactly where the food industry would like to keep the collective mindset.

How are people supposed to stop eating factory food when the government and the medical community support eating it? Check back in for the next installment to read more about how the food industry addicts people to their products.

For more by Nancy Deville, click here.

For more on diet and nutrition, click here.