It is no secret that many of the foods, beverages, and personal products people use every day contain toxic substances known to be harmful to human health. And, it is no secret that even some of the processes, procedures and therapies intended to heal or treat ailments may cause as much or more harm than the good they do.
Just listen to the legalese in the pharmaceutical ads on TV. Better still, read through some of the back-of-the-page (in very fine print) disclosures in the magazine ads!
I guess we cannot say they aren’t telling us, but I doubt very many people really understand any of the cover-the-butt lingo anyway. Indeed, I truly doubt that even doctors know all they should know about some of the pharmaceuticals they prescribe on a regular basis. How could they?
In the U.S., the FDA and other government agencies are supposed to provide watchdog oversight in order to protect Americans from blatant disregard for the health and welfare of American citizens. In many instances, they do a fine job. However, there are way too many instances where they do not seem to want to do much of anything; especially when there is big money is involved.
We hear plenty about how influential big businesses are when it comes to lobbying for specific language and other particulars in pending legislation and policies that may impact their bottom lines. And, while I agree they need to have their say, they should not have the controlling power they seem to have now, in my opinion.
When the food industry wants to include questionable or controversial ingredients in their products, the FDA frequently allows them to list those ingredients with fabricated (sometimes even offbeat) names, which can serve no other practical purpose than to deceive consumers.
One example stands out and gives clear (circumstantial) evidence of this deception. Looking at the many names that sugars and sweeteners have been given, it is easy to understand how consumers would become confused.
Here is a list of names that are used to identify ingredients that, by any other name, are sweeteners. But, because the FDA definition of sweeteners is not what you and I might expect it to be, these names allow manufacturers to manipulate the Nutritional Facts label requirements for “Sugars”. Some of these listed sweeteners are considered “natural”, and some “artificial”.
There are likely other names being used as well, but I trust this list will make my point. And, oh, by the way, only letters K,Q,Y,Z are not represented here!
Agave syrup, alcohol, all natural sweetener, anything sugar, auamiel, aspartame, Barbados molasses, Barbados sugar, barley malt, beet sugar, black strap molasses, brown sugar, cane sugar, cane syrup, caramel, caramel color, clarified grape juice, cooked honey, concentrated fruit juice, confectioners sugar, corn, corn starch, corn syrup, corn sweetener, couscous, dark brown sugar, dates, date sugar, date syrup, dextrine, dextrose, disaccharides, dried fruit, evaporated cane juice, figs, fig syrup, filtered honey, flour, fructose, fruit juice concentrate, fruit sugar, fruit sweetener, galactose, glucose, glycerine, granulated sugar, grape sugar, guar gum, heavy syrup, high fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated glucose syrup, invert sugar, invert sugar syrup, Jaggery, lactose, levulose, light brown sugar, light sugar, light syrup, lite sugar, lite syrup, lo-sugar, low sugar, malt, malts, malted, malt “anything”, malto-“anything”, maltodextrose, malt syrup, maltose, manitol, maple sugar, modified food starch, molasses, monosaccharides, natural honey, natural syrup, naturally sweetened, nectars, organic evaporated cane juice, 100% Natural Sweetener, polysaccharides, potato starch, powdered sugar, powdered sweeteners in packets, pure honey, pure natural sweetener, raisins, raisin syrup, raw honey, raw sugar, ribbon cane syrup, ribose, rice malt, rice syrup, Saccharine, sorbitol, sorghum molasses, sorghum syrup, soy, splenda, succanat, sucrose, sugar, sugar cubes, sugar packets, sweetener, turbinado sugar, uncooked honey, unfiltered honey, wheat, white sugar, wine, Xylitol
Now, isn’t that sweet? (pun intended).
When public concerns and questions arise about a particular ingredient or substance or processing technique, our FDA attempts to appease consumers with their pseudo-actions, but oftentimes nothing really changes. Instead of coming out with legislation or regulations which would ban or better control some of the toxins and potentially harmful processing techniques being used in our everyday products including foods, the FDA seems to prefer just telling manufacturers they need to update their warning labels with better information. That way, people will think the FDA is doing something about the problems, when they are really doing very little or nothing at all.
Who would think the industry would interpret that to mean that they should make the labels more confusing than they already are? That is what seems to happen most of the time, as I see it. Instead, the FDA inactions are just perpetuating that old adage of “Caveat Emptor” (let the buyer beware). In today’s climate of accountability, with all the lawsuits and recalls and such, that old adage just does not cut it, I’m afraid! Today, people are demanding to know the TRUTH, and it is about time, in my opinion!
It is also about time our government agencies knuckled down to the business they are supposed to be doing, i.e., protecting the population of taxpaying Americans from dangers, both the obvious ones and the insidious ones! It is time for them to promote that other adage of “Caveat Venditor” (let the SELLER beware)!
I fully understand and acknowledge that these comments or arguments may not be readily accepted by all, but I hope they can offer some insight to what I consider a sad reality. The intent here is to shed light again on some of the things “they” (whoever “they” really are) do not really want us to think about, regarding some of the real causes for many of the diseases and ailments afflicting so many people today.
It is a sad statement, but Americans are truly a society of sick (i.e., diseased, ill-health, ailing) people (how else would the Medical and Health industries get so wealthy?). If we were not a sick population, the pharmaceutical, medical, healthcare, health insurance and many other industries would not be reaping the obscene profits they are getting, and would probably crumble because of a lack of paying customers.
I cannot help wonder why we have not done more to eliminate more of the known health hazards, instead of continuing to treat symptoms or ailments we know may be caused by some of the things we eat, drink, breathe, apply, ingest or otherwise are exposed to. As another old adage says: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. What ever happened to that kind of philosophy?
Some government agencies are quick to point out OUR personal-choice “errors of our ways” (i.e., tobacco, alcohol use, etc.), but they are slow to recognize and admit that much of our “dis-ease” is either caused or significantly exacerbated by other sources we have little or no personal control over.
I do not know why we allow known (or even possible) hazardous substances to be fed to consumers, and I do not think I will ever understand the mentality behind such a crime against humanity. It makes me wonder if “they” could possibly WANT us to remain UNhealthy, especially considering today’s apparent climate of “profits over people”.