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Where In The World Is The Best Place For Healthy Eating? : The Salt : NPR

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"Basically, if you arrive from Mars and design a food system, you probably couldn't design a worse one than what we have today on Earth," Oxfam's Max Lawson tells The Salt. "There is enough food overall in the world to feed everyone. But 900 million people still don't have enough to eat, and 1 billion people are obese. It's a crazy situation."

Is it mainly politics that gets in the way?

Politics that keeps countries from regulating non-food as drugs?

Politics that prevents countries with starving people from getting food?


The NPR article seems to believe if fruits and vegetables were less expensive, more people would eat them:

The problem is linked to poverty, Lawson says.

"Food is very, very cheap in the U.S. compared to most countries," he explains. "But the fact is you end up with people malnourished in one of the richest countries because they don't have access to fresh vegetables at a cheap enough price to make a balanced diet."

At the other end of the spectrum are countries that struggle just to get enough food on each family's table each day. Chad, Ethiopia and Angola ranked at the overall bottom of Oxfam's list, in large part because of high malnutrition rates and the relatively high cost of foods in these countries.

So how's this for a socialist idea: Tax every food that is not a fruit or vegetable, and use that money to subsidize the prices of fruits and vegetables so that they are SUPER cheap?

I still don't understand why our federal government subsidizes CORN prices but not fruits and vegetables.

I suspect that even if fruits and veggies were cheaper, parents would still drag their kids to Micky D's ... because of convenience, brainwashing, ignorance.

Okay then we also have to subsidize convenience and brainwashing for fruits and veggies!

So, let's all look around the average office and see what our colleagues are eating. My next door school neighbor and I get mocked for our home made stuff and mason jars. What's the ratio of processed to unprocessed food? Because if we wanted it, it'd be in a store... Walmart's been catering to the organic market (a whole different thread), but the point is, if they want it, there's an entrepreneur out there who'll make it happen... 

Geege's point is that people no longer know what we want because we've been bombarded by propaganda commercials.

I think it's a very fablish Marie Antoinette argument when people say, "Let them eat carrots." Many people eat what they want to eat. Case in point, if you challenged the average person to eat clean for a week--no sugar, only the best of produce and meats, no boxes and bags... it'd be tough. 

Our food costs are cheap as a nation, but still food distribution is not always great. This is changing with the meteoric rise in farmers markets. Food insecurity in children is 25%--it's often a misconception that this is an urban problem, but it's rural as well. 

I don't think the government stepping in and taxing sugary food is the solution. But, it's nice to have healthy foods available, and to try and expose kids to those versions of tasty as early as possible. It doesn't always work--I have the pickiest of 6 year olds. One day, he stopped eating most healthy foods. One week ago, after being a self-proclaimed fruitatarian, he declared that he would eat school chicken nuggets. Imagine my horror--I buy meat from the farm. Could be that his friends influence him to try things now. 

I think it is what it is. As urban farming becomes more vogue and we expose kids to the process of creating food in schools, they will become more interested. If shows and cartoons show this in a good light, that'd help, too... 

It's not just education and willpower. 

Junk food systematically retires our brains so that we crave it more:

Bloomberg is right. Economic incentives can help.

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