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Obesity in America ...could it be processed foods?

Updated on November 8, 2010

Americans are overweight!

Are you gaining or losing?

For the past 25 to 30 years, children and adults have been putting on more and more weight. As we have said before, a calorie is a calorie is a calorie. There are 3500 calories in a pound. If we consume more calories than we burn off, we gain weight. On the other hand, when we consume fewer calories, we lose weight.

At last count...

…about 60 to 65% of Americans are overweight and it looks like that number is growing with no end in sight.

Some say it is the amount of food we consume. Others, say it is due to the lack of exercise. Still others, say it is because of all the sugar that is added to the food we consume. Then others, say it is the lifestyles associated with the fast food industry. And lastly, some will say that it is hormonal, slow metabolism and in our DNA …with others blaming it on all the processed foods.

Could processed food be one of the villains?

For instance, if one was to eat a baked potato …baked, not fried without the grease or butter, sour cream and salt. The experts would all agree that the potato baked without all of the added “stuff” would be a healthy choice.

On the other hand …with all the added “stuff,” I am sure the experts would all agree that this potato (with the added “stuff”) would be an unhealthy choice and add calories to the potato.

So While discussing processed food...

...if we take the same potato and slice it into potato chips and then bake the chips until they are golden brown and crispy, they would be considered healthy. However, buy the brand name bag of chips at the corner sugar shack that reads something like …garden valley toasted chips …50% less fat than regular fried potato chips.

Sounds great, right?

…Toasted and 50% less fat is the selling catch!! But then we read the ingredient panel:

Serving size ….12 chips=130 calories. That wouldn’t be to bad if we only eat the 12 chips equal to the serving size …but we don’t …we eat the whole bag!

But here’s the kicker...

…look at the ingredients on that bag of potato chips:

Bleached enriched flour (wheat flour), soybean oil, malt syrup, potato starch, high fructose corn syrup, salt, maltodextrin, baking soda, monoglycerides, yeast protein, (MSG) monosodium glutamate, natural flavors, artificial color including blue#2, red#40, yellow#6 and yellow #5.

The question is...

…why in the world do the chip manufactures have to put all that junk in the chips …and we all know those ingredients are very, very unhealthy to the human system. Could all these processed foods in the market place have something to do with the obesity in America?

Did you notice the ingredient (MSG) monosodium glutamate on the bag of chips? There is growing concern that this excitotoxin, monosodium glutamate, is responsible in part to the obesity problem in children and adults.

Added to this culprit (MSG) …the large consumption of soft drinks sweetened with Nutra Sweet ® (aspartame) when it is known aspartame can cause the same problems as glutamate …the end result, causing obesity.

Is there any wonder, that with all the fast food, refined food and all the processed food we have available...along with the mass advertising of this type of food …lets ask this question again…Could the processed food be a culprit in the battle of obesity in America?

Books of Interest on Excitotoxins:

Please give us your opinion about obesity...

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    • gjcody profile image

      gjcody 7 years ago

      Thanks Chaser ...will be writing more of this type of article.

    • gjcody profile image

      gjcody 7 years ago

      purpleange147 ...thank you for your opinion. I agree ...we have a choice! It is sometimes hard to resist because food is instant happiness. Lets face it ...we need food to survive and when we can't get what we need ...we get what we want! Sounds like a good song!!!

      Thanks for coming by best to your health!

    • purpleangel47 profile image

      purpleangel47 7 years ago from Baltimore, Maryland

      Excellent GJCODY!

      Yes it's processed foods! Yes it's eating too many calories! Yes its sedentary lifestyle! Yes it's making bad food choices! It's all of that. And while we want to put some of the blame for our obesity on the manufacturers, let's face it: their purpose is to make money - not the most ethical reason to create foods that will cause obesity but let's face this: who's making us buy it? And even worse who's making us not only eat it but eat SO MUCH of it? We need to take more control of ourselves if we want good health. Great hub! Thanx for breaking it down! .. (ok I'm off my soapbox now!) ;)

    • profile image

      Chaser4 7 years ago

      Hey're right on spot...can't wait for your next post....keep it up.