Unjustly Blaming Obesity on Sugared Beverages
A Food Hazard

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Unjustly Blaming Obesity on Sugared Beverages

[Ed. Note: Read articles about the profound benefits to human health when dairy products are no longer consumed, and the dangers of continuing to consume them - Dairy Products and Problems with Milk.]

By Robert Cohen, NotMilk.com

These days, they blame it on soda, so soda machines are removed from schools. They blame it on chocolate milk, so chocolate milk is removed from menus so that more unflavored milk can be added. One finds so many conflicts of interest with USDA employees holding seats of power on dietary guidelines committees. These decision makers have strong ties to the dairy industry, but similar relationships with soda manufacturers are rare.

Since there are 365 days in a year, and 3,500 calories in a pound, I calculated that during the 4 years of high school, a teenager would gain 14 additional
pounds from his or her soda consumption, and 21 additional pounds from his or her increased cheese consumption.

Overweight children are usually the victims of the dietary habits of the adult members of the family...Reducing dietary fat to levels necessary to the control of cholesterol cannot be achieved if a child drinks whole milk or eats cheese.
- Charles Attwood, M.D.

On Tuesday (June 14, 2011), the Los Angeles School District removed flavored chocolate and strawberry milks from next ears school lunch menus. At the same time, the Los Angeles School Board executed a $100 million five year contract with the California Happy Cow industry to continue fattening obese kids for Thanksgiving.

These days, they blame it on soda, so soda machines are removed from schools. They blame it on chocolate milk, so chocolate milk is removed from menus so that more unflavored milk can be added. One finds so many conflicts of interest with USDA employees holding seats of power on dietary guidelines committees. These decision makers have strong ties to the dairy industry, but similar relationships with soda manufacturers are rare.

What are we doing differently today. What changed from 1970 to 2011?

After obtaining food data from census.gov's site - http://www.census.gov/prod/2004pubs/03statab/health.pdf

The differences in soda and cheese consumption during the period of time from 1970 through 2010 were considered. Data were also obtained for 1970 soda and cheese consumption rates by performing a Google search.

Here is what was discovered. In 1970, the per capita consumption of soda in America was 29.9 gallons. By 2010, that number had increased to 37.7 gallons.

In 1970, the per capita consumption of cheese was 10 pounds. By 2010, that number had increased to 33 pounds. (In 2011, the average American will consumer over 34 pounds of cheese.)

Just one factor was considered. Calories. The human body does not care where it gets its fuel. Sugar, fat, protein, carbs...it's all fuel to be converted into energy. Extra fuel is stored as fat. So...in fairness to dairy, neither fat nor cholesterol content was considered. Just calories.

One pound of American cheese contains 1,490 calories.

One gallon of cola contains 1,592 calories.

Here is what was found.

In 1970, when I was in college and most people were slim, the average American each day consumed 130 calories from soda and 71 calories from cheese. Criticize what you may, but that proportion kept us relatively slim.

By 2010, the average American was consuming daily 164 calories from soda and 130 calories from cheese.

What we must do, then, is determine the differences. That is the key to the obesity epidemic. The baseline (1970 numbers) did not result in large numbers of overweight children as there are in 2011. That trend resulted from the increased consumption of one or both commodities.

BOTTOM LINE

From 1970 until 2010, the average American consumed an additional 34 calories each day from soda. From 1970 until 2010, the average American consumed an additional 50 calories each day from cheese.

In July of 2000, the Journal of the Archives of Disease in Childhood reported:

"From 1965 to 1996, a considerable shift in the adolescent diet occurred... increases occurred in the consumption of higher fat potatoes and mixed dishes (pizza, macaroni cheese)...These trends, far greater than for US adults, may compromise health of the future US population."

Since there are 365 days in a year, and 3,500 calories in a pound, I calculated that during the 4 years of high school, a teenager would gain 14 additional pounds from his or her soda consumption, and 21 additional pounds from his or her increased cheese consumption.

Oh, yes...one major difference between the two commodities that I have not yet considered in this column, but do so now. Soda does not contain growth hormones. Growth hormones instruct cells to grow. Combine the large amount of calories found in cheese with saturated animal fat and cholesterol, and an abundance of naturally occurring concentrated growth hormones, and the body does what it is instructed to do. Grow! So, place the blame where it rightfully belongs.



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