Monday, May 9, 2016

The FDA - Misleading and Deceptive

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is supposed to be the watchdog for us, the American consumer, they are the oversight that prevents mega food corporations from poisoning us. Yet it seems to me they are more interested in protecting big corporations, could it be because those big food processing companies are buying their way through the FDA. As a result, we the people are being misled and deceived.
What is misleading? Here's just one example: Greek Yogurt. Does it come from Greece? Greek cows? Do Greeks know more about yogurt than the rest of the world? The answer to all those questions is, no! The FDA has no regulations about naming a food, so it's called Greek. That's misleading.
The bigger problem in my opinion is deception. We all know, or should anyway, that processed food has preservatives. Frozen dinners, meals in a box, etc. have some sort of preservatives present, for instance high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) to prevent freezer burn.  But if you look at the front of some processed foods you might see one of these 'no preservatives' logos or something similar, leading us to believe there are no preservatives added.

Common sense tells us that can't be true, it just can't. We also know, being the well informed public that we are, that salt, sodium, sugar and high fructose corn syrup are primary preservatives in processed food. So I decided to investigate the Food and Drug Administration's regulations for these 'no preservatives' labels on food. This is what I found: 
  • “In recent years, we have held that the statutory words “chemical preservative” are not necessary in order to satisfy the 403 (k) provisions of the act, so long as the declaration on the label does reflect the fact that a chemical preservative is present.
    The term “chemical preservative” as defined by 21 CFR 101.22(a(5), means any chemical that, when added to food tends to prevent or retard deterioration thereof, but does not include common salt, sugars, vinegars, spices or oils extracted from spices.” 
The 'no preservatives' logo actually means no chemical preservatives, but the food corporations aren't required to indicate that information. This, in my opinion, is deceptive. For those people who are diabetic or have been instructed by their doctor to maintain a low sodium diet, this deception could cause even more serious health problems.
I suppose the best thing to do is what I've been saying all along...don't eat processed food.

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  1. I just wish that people realized the power that consumer have with their wallet, if the majority of the people stop buying their package chemical cocktails, they will stop manufacturing.
    I know most people do buy because of convenience to put food on the table fast. But if they realized that it does not take long to cook a protein with a vegetable and a starch from scratch, just a little planning ahead. They will be better off health wise.

    1. You are so right Lourdes. It doesn't take a lot of time to prepare real food. But so many people just buy what is shoved down their throat (pun intended).


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