Appetite for Profit: How the food industry undermines our health and how to fight back

by Michele Simon (Author)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly
Simon, a health policy expert and law professor, skewers the food industry for
undermining the health of Americans with "nutrient deficient factory made
pseudofoods." In lawyerly fashion, she explains the ABCs of the business
imperative of "Big Food" (Coca-Cola, Kraft Foods and McDonald's, among many
others): make short-term profit without regard to the product's nutritional
value or societal effects. Permissible tactics, she says, include false
advertising, sham "healthy" food initiatives and co-opting the government, press
and academia. Simon also argues that food-industry advocates use front groups to
attack critics and spread misinformation about nutritional needs. Simon also
chastises her fellow food activists for applauding all "steps in the right
direction," no matter how inadequate; the press for its passive publication of
scientifically dubious industry statements; and the government for abandoning
effective regulation of the food industry. Her case made, Simon offers a host of
suggestions and a manual-like set of directions to parents and other food
activists on how to work with legislatures, school boards and the media to
create a "just food system" that is "sustainable, affordable, accessible, and

From Booklist
America's fast-food purveyors, beverage industry, and processed-food
manufacturers conspire with pliant government regulators to seduce a gullible
populace into eating habits that ultimately lead to ill health. So Simon, a
health-policy attorney, argues in this volume. Defending their own actions as
preservation of people's right to choose, these corporations and the government
agencies charged with monitoring them actually restrict consumers' range of
choices. This hegemony, Simon contends, leads ineluctably to the present
national plagues of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, and other
nutrition-related sickness. Simon expresses particular outrage at how the
beverage industry, which so often controls schoolhouse vending machines, has
tried to restrict children's choices for break-time snacks and drinks. Among the
more controversial recommendations that Simon makes, nutrition labeling of
restaurant meals presupposes that chefs exercise more consistency than
creativity. Simon also fears that concerns about obesity often misfocus on
symptoms, not causes.

Product Details

Paperback: 416 pages
Publisher: Nation Books; 1 edition (September 29, 2006)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1560259329



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