Processed Foods and Its Link to the Increasing Obesity Epidemic

Decent Essays
Processed Foods and its Link to the Increasing Obesity Epidemic

Savannah Eisert

English 214-54
Melanie Wise
15 April 2013

Eisert 1
Processed Foods and its Link to the Increasing Obesity Epidemic Lunchables, Twinkies, potato chips, chocolate chip cookies, or even a trip to McDonald’s after school are just few of the memorable foods as a child that always seemed so exciting and delicious. As a child, I wondered why these scrumptious foods were always just a treat, but never an every day meal on my diet that I could enjoy. But what I did not know was the dirty truth behind these foods: what they are really made out of. Behind food corporation doors lies the truth about processed foods,
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. . by comparison, George Naylor will see only $0.04 of every dollar spent on corn sweeteners” (95). So ultimately, the increase in processed foods have to do with its easy and cheap ingredients. Based on Michael Pollan’s studies, he found out that many of the reasons why obesity has increased so much is due to the increased use of high-fructose corn syrup in the foods people eat. Pollan begins by saying that “corn accounts for most of the surplus calories we’re growing and most of the surplus calories we’re eating” (103). With today’s advanced technology, the country has gone from being able to process corn into two different things, to now creating over hundreds of things with the help of a processor and corn. Pollan’s statistics show that “since 1985, an American’s annual consumption of high-fructose corn syrup has gone from
Eisert 4 forty-five pounds to sixty-six pounds” (104). On top of the high-fructose corn syrup people intake, the other sugars also must be accounted for. Therefore, this excessive amount of sugars in processed food is the main cause to the increase of obesity in America.
Who is to Blame? Behind all the corn, the processing, and the food that results, is the man in charge: food corporations. Because of food corporations greed for money, processed foods have escalated out of control, causing a serious health epidemic: obesity. Michael Pollan, also author
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