Know What Really Grinds My Gears?! – Smart Choices Checkmarks

OMG- I almost spit my green tea all over the place when I came across this New York Times article –

For Your Health, Froot Loops *

*(Insert partial gasp and a little vomit here) An excerpt from the article reads – “A new food-labeling campaign called Smart Choices, backed by most of the nation’s largest food manufacturers, is “designed to help shoppers easily identify smarter food and beverage choices.” The green checkmark label that is starting to show up on store shelves will appear on hundreds of packages, including — to the surprise of many nutritionists — sugar-laden cereals like Cocoa Krispies and Froot Loops.

Smart Choice my ASS!

Eileen T. Kennedy, president of the Smart Choices board and the dean of the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, said the program’s criteria were based on government dietary guidelines and widely accepted nutritional standards. She said the program was also influenced by research into consumer behavior. That research showed that, while shoppers wanted more information, they did not want to hear negative messages or feel their choices were being dictated to them. “The checkmark means the food item is a ‘better for you’ product, as opposed to having an x on it saying ‘Don’t eat this,’ ” Dr. Kennedy said. “Consumers are smart enough to deduce that if it doesn’t have the checkmark, by implication it’s not a ‘better for you’ product. They want to have a choice. They don’t want to be told ‘You must do this.’ ” Dr. Kennedy, who is not paid for her work on the program, defended the products endorsed by the program, including sweet cereals. She said Froot Loops was better than other things parents could choose for their children. “You’re rushing around, you’re trying to think about healthy eating for your kids and you have a choice between a doughnut and a cereal,” Dr. Kennedy said, evoking a hypothetical parent in the supermarket. “So Froot Loops is a better choice.” **** Whaaaaaat THE F**********CK???? With all due respect, I think that Dr. Eileen Kennedy needs to be repeatedly dropped on her head a few times to knock some sense into her. First of all most consumers don’t know SH*T about nutrition, after many years of being lied to and deceived, they are totally and utterly confused as to the reasons they cant lose weight. Nutrition labels are confusing enough as it is, and now the checkmark to say that these foods are okay to eat??? Bad food choices are the main reason for obesity, as I always said the cure is simply that people need to eat REAL FOOD!!! Drop the doughnut, and the damn Froot Loops. After all those years of lying and telling me this is “part of a complete breakfast” (I totally believed you Toucan Sam!) when all it did was make me hungry again 30 minutes later – somebody has to shoot Toucan Sam and flush that stupid Leprechaun down the toilet.

Sorry Buddy!

Pick up an apple and eat some oatmeal, is that so hard??? **** More from the article – Michael Jacobson, executive director of the Center for Science in the Public Interest, an advocacy group, was part of a panel that helped devise the Smart Choices nutritional criteria, until he quit last September. He said the panel was dominated by members of the food industry, which skewed its decisions. “It was paid for by industry and when industry put down its foot and said this is what we’re doing, that was it, end of story,” he said. Dr. Kennedy and Dr. Clark, who were both on the panel, said industry members had not controlled the results. Mr. Jacobson objected to some of the panel’s nutritional decisions. The criteria allow foods to carry the Smart Choices seal if they contain added nutrients, which he said could mask shortcomings in the food. “You could start out with some sawdust, add calcium or Vitamin A and meet the criteria,” Mr. Jacobson said. More foods on the list:

  • Despite federal guidelines favoring whole grains, the criteria allow breads made with no whole grains to get the seal if they have added nutrients.
  • The program gives the seal to both regular and light mayonnaise, which could lead consumers to think they are both equally healthy.
  • Allows frozen meals and packaged sandwiches to have up to 600 milligrams of sodium, a quarter of the recommended daily maximum intake.

“The object of this is to make highly processed foods appear as healthful as unprocessed foods, which they are not,” said Marion Nestle, a nutrition professor at New York University. ****** STOP THE LIES! Know what I think of the Smart Choices Program???


These checkmarks belong on apples, avocados, berries, peppers, oranges, carrots, etc. Oh . . . wait, they don’t come in a package! I only hope that most consumers are smart enough NOT to believe what they see. I hope no one comes to me asking if it is okay to eat mayonnaise because of the “Checkmark”on the label“,  I might just have to dropkick them in the neck. Stay strong, Joey

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