Our government pushes certain foods, even if they’re not the ones we should be eating. Does “Got Milk?” sound familiar? How about “Pork. The other white meat?” These advertising campaigns are the result of government-sanctioned promotion programs. It doesn’t mean that these foods are necessarily good for you (although they may be). What it means is that, thanks to farm subsidies, we have TOO MUCH of them!

These campaigns try to increase consumption of commodities such as dairy, beef, and pork. According to nutritionist Parke Wilde, the messages sent out by these advertising campaigns are inconsistent with the federal government’s Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

The 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, published jointly by the US Department of Agriculture and the US Department of Health and Human Services, recommend that most people consume more whole grains, fruits, vegetables, fish, and low-fat dairy products and, overall, moderately reduce the total number of calories consumed. Meanwhile, this same government is promoting more consumption of beef, pork, and dairy products. Some of them have even promoted such calorie-heavy foods as bacon cheeseburgers, barbecue pork ribs and butter.

Wilde says, “The most striking feature of the revised Dietary Guidelines for Americans, released in January 2005, is the publication’s increased emphasis on obesity prevention. At the same time, federal support for promoting fruits and vegetables is small compared to federal support for pork and dairy.”

Art credit: freeimages.co.uk

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