Exhaustive research has shown that obesity is a complex problem with many factors and causes. Why, then, do the nutrition nannies continually blame target foods that they have deemed “unhealthy”? Despite the science, these self-styled watchdogs have portrayed the overweight—for decades—as victims of incalculably sinister food companies peddling fat to children. Now comes yet another scientific nail in their coffin:
A study of 900 primary school pupils in Norway found that fat children ate healthy foods – such as fruit, vegetables, fish, and brown bread, as well as low-calorie cheese and yoghurt – more frequently than their normal-weight peers. The research suggested that a good diet without exercise would not be enough to prevent weight gain.
The study, done by the Norwegian Institute of Public Health, also found that trim children indulged in plenty of pizza and cheeseburgers. This will come as a shocker to food cops who consistently try and blame cartoon characters and mascots for obesity rates. But the truth is dividing foods into "healthy" and "unhealthy" columns can't explain weight gain (or loss). Beer guts and jelly rolls are caused by calories, energy that is both taken in and expended. Eating too much of any food, be it cookies and milk or carrots and hummus, will result in a net weight gain. And beyond that, as we've documented, everything from lack of exercise to lack of sleep can affect that calorie balance and result in obesity.
The Norwegian research complements a 2004 Harvard study in which researchers examined the diets of 14,000 children and found that "there was not a strong association between intake of snack foods and weight gain." Another study at Penn State University found essentially the same thing.
Surely Michael Jacobson and his fellow killjoys at the Center for Science in the Public Interest are preparing a statement on this study, right? Don't hold your breath. Ultimately their war on food isn't about nutrition or health. It's about anti-corporate ideology and sticking it to "Big Food." It's why Jacobson said earlier this year that he would crusade against kids’ meals with toys regardless of their nutritional value, since including toys was "inherently deceptive." Even if the toys promoted a house salad, apparently.
So much for being concerned about obesity.