Too much sugar and spice not so nice

This just in:  too much sugar and salt are bad for you!  Not really breaking news, is it?  But according to two (two!) new reports published last week, Americans were once again told they’re consuming too much of the white stuffs.  You think we would know by now that excess salt leads to high blood pressure and that all those sweets lead to extra pounds and even bad cholesterol.  But here’s the buried lead: Americans aren’t getting the message and the food industry may have to stage an intervention.

Food companies have already cut the fat from their foods, bulked up the fiber content and now the Food and Drug Administration is being encouraged to regulate the industry to help it remove salt from food.

But isn’t asking the food manufacturers to regulate the amount of sugar and salt they dump into their processed foods like asking drug dealers to please not cut their coke with some whacked out chemical that’ll kill you faster?  I mean, they’re one of the reasons we’re in this mess in the first place. 

Most of the salt and sugar in our diets doesn’t come from sprinkling it on our fries or using it to bake cupcakes, instead it’s already added to everything else we eat before it even gets to our plates by food manufacturers.  (Pick something in your pantry and read the ingredient label…it’s bound to have salt/sugar in it)  See what I’m getting at?  Add in the fact that the more sugar and salt we eat, the more we crave it and it’s no wonder Americans can’t kick the habit (or drop the pounds). 

I’m not advocating completely cutting out processed foods (although it’s not a bad idea if you can manage it), but there are simple steps you can take to make sure you’re not loading up on extra salt and sugar.  Eat more fresh fruits and veggies.   Read ingredient labels.  The best tip of all…Learn to cook.  If you’re making it, you know exactly what’s going into it.

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