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A Healthier Lifestyle: Staying Away From Industrilized Foods

1783 words - 8 pages

The choice between processed foods and vitamin enriched food is in fact a choice best made for our society’s future. Through the years there has been much debate about how to resolve the problems regarding the Standard American Diet. People nowadays have become accustomed to the fast food restaurants on every corner and do not think much of its long-term effects. Now why might this be? Well the marketers and food producers of today have discovered the wonders of artificial flavoring and other means of improving the foods taste. When the products are sold to the public, the word spreads, profits grow and its market will expand by each passing day. The prices of the original product will then decrease, thus resulting in a wider consumer base. In a seemingly unending cycle the general public has become accustomed to an unhealthy diet, making it extremely difficult to change the minds of many members in society. This dilemma has brought much debate among professionals and activists, but the issue should ideally be left to the consumer; however through the years the consumer has continually shown to make the wrong choice.
The industrialization of the food market and the lack of self-control within society has been threatening humanity in various ways. First, the processed foods that are becoming the norms of today are lowering the life expectancy with every bite. Second, the health problems that are becoming more apparent in our nation’s citizens are being passed on from generation to generation. Last but not least, the convenience of these fast foods are making it much easier and seemingly beneficial to purchase them on a daily basis. A New York Times and Cook’s magazine writer, Mark Bittman, proposed a plan to tax junk food to sway consumers to purchase the now lesser expensive healthy foods, which will be supported by the profits of the increased tax. The decreased consumption of junk food would lessen the rate of heart disease and certainly lengthen our life expectancies. The reason actions like this must be taken is because industries are much more interested in profits and personal wealth as opposed the health of the public. Now that junk food has become a lifestyle and not just a habit, it is time for the government to take the reins. While this may seem to be a bold move, there is little doubt when statistics like these are true: “fresh fruits and vegetables have increased in price by over 200% since 1982, while carbonated drinks have only increased about 50%,” it is clear that a change must be on the horizon (Bittman 295). Other staggering statistics like heart disease kill more in a year than AIDS and all cancers combined (Heart Disease: Scope and Impact) and over 18% of adolescents, ages 12-19, were considered obese in 2009 (Heart Disease Statistics). Those are just a few of the countless statistical evidences that prove our nation has willingly developed a way to lower our life expectancies with something that is essential to live.

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