Buying food has become a tricky business. We are confronted with confusing and often conflicting information, and many of us blindly accept what is stated on the labels of our foods to be the actual facts.
Unfortunately, the truth is that the food marketing industry often uses this confusing jargon to essentially trick us into buying their product. They do this all within legal guidelines of course, but that really doesn’t mean that they are looking out for our best interests. A good example of this is cholesterol.
When it became popular in the media that high levels of cholesterol were linked to cardiovascular disease, food companies had a heyday. The perception of the consumer was that cholesterol was bad for your health, so we equated high cholesterol with heart disease, (not actually true… read this) and therefore cholesterol was bad for your health – so anything that is cholesterol free must be good for you.
Foods that never had cholesterol in the first place, suddenly have ‘cholesterol free’ on their labels, just so people would assume that it must be good for you. Unfortunately, this kind of trickery happens all of the time and this flawed logic seems to work on a lot of people.
So what is the moral of the story?
Do your homework, and know what is in your foods. Read the labels and know what they mean. Don’t trust what the food marketers are trying to sell you. Remember, they are in it to make profit.
I think that we are becoming more aware as a society especially with all kinds of information at our fingertips at any time. As a result we can be more in the driver’s seat when it comes to our own health and welfare.