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Showing posts from June, 2017

The fast food-obesity myth

The fast food-obesity myth
Fast food is high on the ratings scale to explain the modern epidemic of obesity. It makes sense. These foods are high in calories, high in fat, highly palatable, cheap, available 24-7, heavily marketed to younger persons and totally convenient. Moreover, these compelling attributes of guilt are bolstered by data showing that in the last several decades, the number of fast food outlets has soared, as have the portion sizes of food they serve. Thus it is easy to understand why the term ‘fast food’ rolls so easily off the tongue of policy shapers and makers and why restrictions are called for to limit the number of fast food outlets and to make fast foods unattractive through higher taxation and consumer education. But, as Oliver Cromwell said in addressing the assembled Church of Scotland: “Gentlemen, in the bowels of Christ, I beseech thee. Think it possible you may be mistaken”. So let us turn to several recently published scientific articles on this topic.


Satiety: Chews your food wisely

Over 100 years ago a health enthusiast named Horace Fletcher warned us that “nature would castigate those that don’t masticate” One hundred ears on and we live in an ‘obesogenic’ food environment characterized by highly palatable, high energy dense foods that are often served in large portions.These features combine to promote energy intake, and when the foods are softly textured, they can increase the rate of eating (g/min) and promote energy intakes even further.The current global rates of obesity would be enough to make Fletcher grind his teeth in disappointment!
We are told that hyper-palatable, energy dense foods rich in sugar and fat and are ‘engineered’ to be less satiating and to encourage consumption.These commonly come in packaged processed foods but also in the home food environment where energy dense Dauphinoise potatoes, tagliatelle carbonara and cheesecake can also promote passive overconsumption. Very high levels of fat and sugar are absolute characteristics of dessert d…