Is Your Food Making You Sick?
Get a Shocking Look at the Inside World of the U.S. Food System
The American food system is in crisis, plagued with an industrial mentality that puts profits ahead of the people it is supposed to nourish. In response, the first of two much-need films on the topic has been released.
Food Inc. “lifts the veil on our nation's food industry, exposing the highly mechanized underbelly that has been hidden from the American consumer with the consent of our government's regulatory agencies, USDA and FDA. Our nation's food supply is now controlled by a handful of corporations that often put profit ahead of consumer health, the livelihood of the American farmer, the safety of workers and our own environment.”
The problems are deep-seated and varied, as Food Inc.’s official movie site explains:
Obesity, Diabetes, Heart Disease and other Health Problems are at Epidemic Levels: The U.S. food system encourages the production of highly processed foods, high in sugar, calories and non-nutritional “fillers” like corn and soy ingredients. This heavily processed diet is leading to obesity, diabetes, heart disease and cancer among Americans.
Factory Farms: Of the 10 billion animals raised and killed for food in the United States every year, nearly all of them are raised on factory farms. Not only do these have inhumane conditions, but they pollute surrounding communities and contribute significantly to global warming.
Pesticides: Conventional farming relies on pesticides to grow crops, but these pesticide residues, which have been linked to cancer, autism and other neurological disorders, remain on your produce and in your animal foods.
Genetic Engineering: Genetically modified (GM) foods are grown from organisms that have had their DNA altered in a way that does not occur in nature. The three biggest potential concerns surrounding GM foods, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), are as follows:
Allergenicity. The transfer of genes from commonly allergenic foods could pose a problem for those already allergic. There is also a possibility of the creation of new allergies.
Gene transfer. Genes could potentially be transferred from GM foods to cells of the body or to bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract. This could have a negative effect on human health, such as the transfer of antibiotic-resistant genes to humans.
Outcrossing. Genes from GM plants can contaminate conventional crops in the wild through natural pollination and other processes (like wind). Further, seeds from GM and conventional crops can inadvertently be mixed. This "outcrossing" represents a threat to the future safety and security of the food supply, and has already occurred.
Cloning: The FDA has approved the sale of meat and milk from cloned livestock, despite the fact that Congress voted twice to delay the decision until further safety and economic studies have been conducted.
Transportation: The average food product travels 1,500 miles to get to your grocery store. In all, transporting food accounts for 30,800 tons of greenhouse gas emissions each year.
The good news is that solutions abound and are already underway in many parts of the country. For instance, Food Inc. discusses low-impact farming, which is an eco-friendly, community-friendly alternative to industrialized agriculture.
What is needed is a paradigm shift that removes the industrial component from agriculture and gives it back to the small family farms upon which this country was largely built.
FRESH: An Inspiring Tale About the Future of the Food System
After you’ve seen Food, Inc., we highly recommend you also watch FRESH. FRESH “celebrates the farmers, thinkers and business people across America who are re-inventing our food system … Forging healthier, sustainable alternatives, they offer a practical vision for a future of our food and our planet.”
Is Your Diet Less Than Ideal? Consider AbsorbAid Platinum Your Insurance Policy
Even though your body produces some enzymes on its own, if you’ve been eating mostly processed foods for a long time, your body must divert extra energy to producing more and more enzymes to break down this food.
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10 Simple Things You Can do to Change Our Food System
If these films inspire you to do your part to get healthier and support a healthier U.S. food system, you’re in luck. FoodIncMovie.com has detailed 10 simple steps you take right now to help change our food system for the better. Please try to incorporate as many of these tips into your lifestyle as possible, and encourage your friends and family to do so as well.
- Stop drinking sodas and other sweetened beverages. You can lose 25 pounds in a year by replacing one 20-oz. soda a day with water.
- Eat at home. You’ll eat less and you’ll eat healthier.
- Support the passage of laws requiring chain restaurants to post calorie information on menus and menu boards.
- Tell schools to stop selling sodas, junk food and sports drinks.
- Go without meat one day a week. About 70 percent of all antibiotics used in the United States are used in farm animals!
- Buy organic or sustainable food with little or no pesticides.
- Protect family farms by visiting your local farmer’s market. This allows farmers to keep 80 to 90 cents of each dollar you spend.
- Make a point to know where you food comes from. Read labels and choose locally grown foods as much as possible.
- Tell Congress that food safety is important to you.
- Demand job protections for farm workers and food processors, ensuring fair wages and other protections. Farm workers face poverty more than twice as often as all other wage and salary employees.
Food Manufacturers Won’t Guarantee Your Foods’ Safety
Are You Concerned About A Safe Food Supply Too?