I have seen this phenomenon quite a bit in my private practice. Clients often think that if a food is labeled with a healthy-sounding term, they can eat more. But of course, cookies are cookies, regardless of whether they are reduced-fat, organic, gluten-free, or labeled some other way.
Children's health and well-being are essential to the future vitality and security of this country, and parents care deeply about their children's health. But, parents also know they are up against powerful commercial interests, and they are starting to get angry.
In creating products that will sell consistently, food manufacturers learned to walk a line between the extremes of an exciting first bite or sip and the utterly familiar. More than any other product, Coke had mastered this balancing act.
My biggest concern is that solely focusing on weight impedes the health movement's progress. Such a clinical and quantitative frame gives very little thought to -- and leaves no room for a conversation about -- socio-political and environmental factors that pose a threat to our health.
If you wanted to ensure a report gets buried, a good time to release it would be the Friday before a holiday week. That the FTC released its latest report on marketing to children then speaks volumes about how seriously the Obama administration is taking this intractable problem.
The wellbeing of children is everybody's business, and everybody should mind that children are staring down the barrel of a glow-in-the-dark cheese doodle or sugar-laden cereal loop at foreshadowed health and foreshortened lives.
Fast-forward to 2012 and technology has indeed had a notable impact on how and what we eat. Not because it's changed the way we cook, but more because it's changed who we are, how we think, and opened up, literally, a world of options.
The best possible start in life is every baby's birthright. For the vast majority of babies, breastfeeding is an important part of that formula. The marketing of other formulas to neonates as an alternative to breast milk... most certainly is not!
Given all the defeats and set-backs this year due to powerful food industry lobbying, the good food movement should by now be collectively shouting: I am mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anymore.
Sandwiched between each program are ads for food, all kinds of food -- bizarre food, excessive food, greasy, salty, sugary food, diet food, fast food, convenient food -- but no food that supports human health.