Rule the World

It's time to begin my manifesto.

Friday, April 22, 2005

No. 006: Healthy Eating

When I rule the world: we will make healthy food choices.

From what I gather, the Western world is getting fatter and fatter. Blame working mothers, blame busy lifestyles, blame too many hours spent watching TV - the upshot is our bottoms are getting bigger, our arteries are clogging up, and we're eating too much crap.

And our governments get all in our face about it every now and then, and issue guidelines about how we should eat five servings of fruit and vegetables every day, and not cut out carbs to lose weight, but most of us ignore them and keep eating stupid things and then complaining when we can't fit our jeans. So we stop eating carbs for a year, only poo once a week, and then wonder why we end up with bowel cancer forty years from now.

Who knows what a 'serving' is, anyway? I do, but who else? And why is it that healthy food is always more expensive than KFC? Where's the incentive to buy a basket-full of vegetables and laboriously make a nice soup when you could just buy a pizza instead? And why does organic food cost so much? We're told that our fruit and vegetables are covered in pesticides, our eggs and dairy products are probably full of dodgy antibiotics, our meat may have been raised on a carnivorous diet, and our fish could give us mercury poisoning. We're told what we should do to be healthy, but we don't get any help. I'd change that with my D.E.L.A.P. (Don't Eat Like A Pig) policy.

For one thing, farmers will have to feed cows and sheep grass, and chickens will only eat grain, so we won't be eating weird Frankenstein foods. I'm not yet sure what I'll do about the fish. I don't eat fish, so I can't pretend it's top priority for me, but I'll find a Fish Expert to iron out the details. And meat will be sold with the fat trimmed away. None of us really need to eat crackling. It's bad and wrong.

Fruit and vegetables will be sold pre-washed and pre-prepared. It will be as easy to buy carrot sticks as it is to buy chocolate. England's supermarkets are already pretty good about presuming complete laziness in their customers, and it's brilliant. It's so much easier to eat stuff you don't have to peel or wash yourself. Fruit and vegetables will become convenience foods.

This will be paid for by taxing unhealthy foods, thus further incentivising us to make healthy choices. So we'll still be able to scoff a bucket of KFC if we just can't resist it, but by doing so we'll be helping subsidise healthy food for somebody else. This would reverse the current trend of lower-income people eating the least healthy (and cheapest) food. Healthy food will no longer be a luxury item. And increasing the cost of a Mars bar to $5 might make us a little more likely to reach for a 25c banana when we get the munchies.

There will be a zero tolerance policy of any 'cut carbs' / 'cut protein' / 'never eat fat' / [insert fad diet of choice] eating plans. And the people who have peddled the Atkins Diet and its ilk to us over the years will have to hand over 50% of their profits to help subsidise sensible diet groups, like Weightwatchers - these will all be free. Kids will learn about nutrition at school. Food won't be used as a reward, and giving children too much sugar or artificially-coloured food will be akin to peddling them crack.

And Nigella Lawson and Jamie Oliver will go door-to-door, teaching us how to cook. Nigella promises to tie her hair back first. Jamie promises he won’t talk in that fake Cockney accent.


At 3:27 pm, Blogger Em said...

All of these are very smart points! Drives me crazy that in America we are all about bargains, MORE for less and Super Sizing! We don't need to SUPER SIZE anything. God.


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