FDA To Tell Us What Healthy Means–Using Outdated Models That Still Mistakenly Vilify Cholesterol, Fat
There is power is words, even in an age of so many lies, half-truths, and obfuscations.
Perhaps words are even more important in such an age, as we parse the statements coming out of government and companies’ PR shops like shamen examining the entrails of chickens to distill out the facts that may or may not be swaddled within the blanket of BS.
That’s why it is so disappointing to read about the Food and Drug Administration’s new effort at redefining the federal guidelines for what is meant by the term “healthy.”
This issue of the FDA’s often mysteriously arrived-at definitions came up last May, when the agency controversially updated the Nutrition Facts label, and prior to that, when the agency approved the 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
The agency’s purported motivation for doing this now is that it is seeking to make the definition of the term “healthy” compatible with “…the latest nutrition science,” which one assumes they define as their own, contained within the Dietary Guidelines.
This is a decision not without controversy for many, many people, ranging from dieticians to even those who have a casual acquaintance with the actual “latest nutrition science.”
For instance, the guidelines as published in May created controversy by continuing to criticize the intake of cholesterol, suggesting that, although it lifted the 300 mg per day suggested limit (that of about two eggs) people should still be careful with cholesterol.
To many dieticians, this is simply a continuation of a long-debunked and outdated belief–little more than a prejudice really–that cholesterol causes heart disease. We now know that LDL cholesterol is in fact vital to a healthy, functioning body, and we have known for some time the 1950s-era link between cholesterol and heart disease was spurious.
Another controversial area was that of fat, which has also been linked–again, many think mistakenly–to heart disease. The FDA recommendations last May famously made something with reduced fat yet still containing tons of added sugar more healthy than something with the opposite proportions: the ludicrous extension of the FDA’s logic was that Pop-Tarts would be considered more healthy than an avocado.
So be sure to take a grain of salt with any new FDA recommendations, as they are likely tainted with corporate and lobbyist money and influence, and may not have your best interests at heart at all.