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Parents Fined In Canada For Not Sending Ritz Crackers In Kids’ Lunches

Published on November 28, 2013,

Dr Yoni Freedhoff’s Weighty Matters blog has an extraordinary account of a mother in Canada whose children have been fined because their packed lunches did not have the required grain component. To ‘rectify’ the mistake, the lunches were supplemented by the school with Ritz Crackers…

Kristen Bartkiw's note via

Kristen Bartkiw’s note via

It’s quite possible that the single stupidest school lunch policy on the planet comes courtesy of a strange interpretation of the Manitoba Government’s Early Learning and Child Care lunch regulations…

Apparently if a child’s lunch is deemed “unbalanced“, where “balance” refers to ensuring that a lunch conforms to the proportions of food groups as laid out by Canada’s awful Food Guide, then that child’s lunch is “supplemented“, and their parent is fined.

Blog reader Kristen Bartkiw received just such a fine.

She sent her children to daycare with with lunches containing leftover homemade roast beef and potatoes, carrots, an orange and some milk.

She did not send along any “grains”.

As a consequence the school provided her children with, I kid you not, supplemental Ritz Crackers, and her with a $10 fine.

As Kristen writes, had she sent along lunches consisting of, “microwave Kraft Dinner and a hot dog, a package of fruit twists, a Cheestring, and a juice box” those lunches would have sailed right through this idiocy. But her whole food, homemade lunches? They lacked Ritz Crackers…

More at:  Parents Fined For Not Sending Ritz Crackers In Kids’ Lunches

Dr Yoni Freedhoff: Juice is NOT a F@*#$*&g Fruit!

Published on March 26, 2013,

One of the most frustrating aspects of conventional thinking is the way certain products are held up as healthy when the reality is that they are anything but. Fruit juice is one of the worst offenders. The situation is not helped by health guidelines (such as Canada’s official Food Guide) that describe juice as a fruit equivalent and manufacturers who inevitably then go on to use this in their marketing. On his blog, Dr Yoni Freedhoff looks at the situation in Canada where research suggests some children are now consuming several times the recommended daily fruit juice limit. This is from Weighty Matters…

English: Orange juice. Italiano: Succo d'aranc...

Orange juice. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

So are Canadian children drinking too much juice?

Good god yes.

recent study published in Applied Physiology Nutrition and Metabolism set out to determine Canadian fruit and vegetable consumption.

Their findings?

The average Canadian child between the ages of 2 and 8 is consuming 50% more than their recommended juice maximums. But that’s not the whole story. Some kids are chugging tons of the stuff with the 75th percentile of 2-3 year olds drinking 2.5x as much which means 25% of Canadian preschoolers are drinking even more than that!

Juice is sugar water with vitamins. It has drop per drop the same amount of sugar as soda pop and in some cases more (like that grape juice which has double the sugar of Coca-Cola – 10 staggering teaspoons a glass). Liquid calories don’t satiate, and they don’t pack the fibre and phytonutrients of actual fruit.

So do you think the Food Guide’s inclusion of juice as a fruit, or to put it differently the Food Guide’s failure to admonish against juice consumption might have something to do with its consumption among Canadian preschoolers?

I sure do. And while it’s not true causal proof, looking to Australia, a country where their Food Guide explicitly discourages juice consumption and sets the same half cup maximum as the Canadian and American Pediatric societies, my read of this report has their average 2-3 year olds drinking only a third of a cup of juice a day.

Bottom line?

Our Food Guide stinks and what it says does matter.

More at:  Juice is NOT a F@*#$*&g Fruit!

Video: The Talk the Food Industry Didn’t Want to See

Published on December 14, 2012,

The Diet Doctor has flagged up this superb 13 minute YouTube video from Dr Yoni Freedhoff who was first invited to give a talk to food industry representatives and then, at the last minute, disinvited…

The video cannot be shown at the moment. Please try again later.

The Diet Doctor describes it as follows:

So the food industry invited a doctor to give a talk at an industry breakfast. But three days before the talk, with his flights and hotels booked, they cancelled his talk. Why?

Well, I guess they suddenly realized that they had invited the wrong person. Dr Yoni Freedhoff is no fan of the food industry. Having already prepared his 13 minutes talk he recorded it and uploaded it to YouTube two days ago. Number of views so far: 160 000.

It’s a great talk. See it. Share it.

More at: What the Food Industry Didn’t Want to See

Here’s a link to Dr Freedhoff’s blog Weighty Matters

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