It helps to realize how much the food and agricultural industry has dictated nutritional information in this country and around the world. I know, for I grew up in that dairy country, Holland, and while I was raised vegetarian, my parents were deeply convinced that dairy, including milk, eggs, cheese and yoghurt was actually healthy for you. Not until a few years ago did I discover that the complete vegan diet is simply the way to go, healthy, delicious and nutritious.
What also helps is to remember how skewed our information stream has really become, for the recent obsession with deaths from opioid addiction and heroin overdoses puts this in perspective:
- 78 deaths a day from heroin overdoses is a national health crisis, and we send in the marines,
- 1671 deaths a day from cardiovascular illness is business as usual, and the USDA blithely continues to recommend animal proteins and dairy, even in its latest version of "MyPlate."
An objective reader might conclude that cardiovascular disease should be the bigger priority, and the government should stop promoting more of it, i.e. animal protein, fats and dairy. Sugar, white flour and whipped cream are a more dangerous addiction than opioids. Time to tune in to Dr. Neil Barnard, Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn, and others who are focused on the right priorities.
Meanwhile, John Oliver recently put the whole mess with opioid addictions in perspective beautifully:
Meaning again that iatrogenic disease, disease caused by doctors and the side effects of medicine continue to be a serious issue. A recent piece on Nutrition Facts makes the same point all over again: Medical Care: The Third Leading Cause of Death.
Taking responsibility for your own health and nutrition is really up to you, and it pays to do your own research and to scrutinize the validity of the government's assertions. The USDA is in the business of supporting the food industry, and the health and well-being of consumers is an after thought. What PCRM is doing is of critical importance, and we all need to pay attention and come to our own conclusions.