Friday, January 14, 2011

It's Official: Sugar 5 times Healthier Than Saturated Fat!

"Bring me another bottle of fat-free flavored fluid milk"

This is so going to stop childhood obesity.

The USDA is going to fix school lunches.

And by fix I mean make them more broken, of course. The full implementation is available to read and comment on here. Or you can read the USA Today article here. From the USDA's overview section:
To align the meals served under the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and the School Breakfast Program (SBP) with the 2005 Dietary Guidelines, this proposed rule would require schools to offer more fruits, vegetables and whole grains; offer only fat-free or low-fat fluid milk; reduce the sodium content of school meals substantially over time; control saturated fat and calorie levels; and minimize trans fat.
Where do I start?

But first: 
When the frack are the mainstream media going to start linking to original sources? I looked at tons of news stories on this and while some of them mentioned that "anyone who wants to comment on the rules can visit" none of them linked to the actual document. This is the 2011, you idiots, get with the program already! Al Gore invented the information super highway we all know and love, like, forever ago. Learn how to hyperlink already.

Ok, I'm back, sorry about that. When was the last time you heard the term 'information superhighway'? Sort of disappeared along with Vanilla Ice. Neither was heavily mourned.

The most obvious silliness in this whole raft of silly is the "fat-free or low-fat fluid milk" (yeah I'm back on topic, USDA school lunches, please try and keep up). This includes fat-free "flavored" milk. Take all the healthy fat out of milk, tastes like dirty water, so add in plenty of subsidized HFCS so that kids will like it again. It's like the worst of both worlds. Coca-cola without the bubbles but with the least healthy (and most allergenic) parts of milk added in. All in the name of reducing childhood obesity. Are you high!!!!!

Well, high on bureaucracy.
The ‘‘Report of the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010’ (which precedes the release of the Dietary Guidelines’ policy) recommends:
• Lower saturated fat consumption (<7% of total calories)
• Lower sodium consumption (<1500 mg per day), and
• A new red/orange vegetable subgroup.
I've no problem with red and orange vegetables. I've even been known to eat them from time to time. But what's up with the demonization of salt? This is supposed to make children thinner? Salt makes food yummy so children eat too much. Plus it's an accepted fact that it is VERY UNHEALTHY! Yeah right.

Here's a screen shot of the lunch requirements:

(click for larger)
Meat alternates are defined as "beans, cheese, whole eggs, nuts, seeds, peanut butter, other nut or seed butters, and yogurt." Yes, sugary, starch-infused, fat-free yogurt is a meat alternate. And since "the recommendation [for meat/meat alternates is] to control saturated fat" it would be actually be considered preferable to a hamburger.

This is so going to stop childhood obesity.

So how many times was HFCS mentioned in this huge 4.6 MB acrobat document of government speak? Zip, zero, nada, goose egg, nic.

This is so totally going to stop childhood obesity.

To be fair, sugar actually is mentioned a whopping 16 times, whilst saturated fat is brought up a mere 83 times. According to the USDA, SFAs are 5.1875 times more dangerous than sugar for children and infinitely (ok, ok, dividing by zero is actually undefined) more dangerous than HFCS.

This is so totally going to stop childhood obesity.

I'm glad my child won't be attending school in the United States.


  1. Rant on!!! This is disgusting....they are only going to drive the childhood obesity and diabetes rates up with this crap! Did you check out the calorie restrictions too? So, while they raise our kids' blood sugar up and crash it down by giving them "hearthealthywholegrains" and fat free flavored milk, the kids are going to be foraging for more food pretty soon after they eat these stupid low calorie "healthy" meals. This is going to so backfire. I sadly predict a huge rise in behavioral problems, obesity, asthma (from all the heartyhealthywholegrains), and diabetes by this disgusting protocol. Don't get me started on their meat "alternatives". Tofu? What the hell...why don't they just rip out their thyroids now and get it over with.

    When I have kids, they are going to be the envy of all of their classmates when they pull out of their lunchboxes a grass-fed ribeye steak and a pile of broccoli sauteed in butter and garlic.

  2. Testify Lynnsey!

    Yeah that's something I completely forgot about, all the poor teachers forced to deal with kids with spiking and crashing blood sugar levels.

    A good friend of mine dropped out of teaching (in the US) last year and she's someone who's so smart, funny, level-headed and in love with children, that I consider it a tragedy. She became disenfranchised with the bureaucracy but having 35 fat kids bouncing off the walls after eating a heart-healthy meat substitute for lunch is not really going to encourage excellent teachers.

  3. My older kids never ate school lunches - I ALWAYS packed their lunch; if the truth be told, they thought the school provided lunches were disgusting. The same is true for the one kid left at home, my 16-year-old baby. His friends think he's bonkers because he doesn't eat junk food at all - one of them keeps telling him he *needs* the carbohydrates in chips and cookies and sodas or he'll waste away (he is naturally very thin, something he inherited from his father).

    Yesterday he came home and told me they're discussing macronutrients in biology class, and his teacher told him that human beings require carbohydrates for energy. He then turned around and told them that the reason humans like to eat fatty foods is because we evolved to - that "in caveman days" we saved the fat from animals we killed to consume in winter for ENERGY. I told him to go back to school and ask his teacher how human beings have changed, physiologically and biologically, in the last 40,000 for us to suddenly require carbohydrates for energy when we used to rely on fat. I'll be interested to hear his explanation.

  4. Yeah, that's a bit frightening, now we have to have junk food or we'll waste away (or eat more carrots, of course). I suppose we also require video games to develop reflexes and keep us out of the dangerous, cancer-inducing sunlight.

  5. Frack is spelled Frakk.