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Dear Surgeon General: We’re Fed Up, Let’s Act on Sugar

When I was a child, I would read the ingredients on food packages. Nearly every package I picked up began with the same ingredient. “What’s high fructose corn syrup?” I asked my Mom.  “I don’t know,” my mom said, “but we could certainly get rich from selling it. It’s in everything!” Read More

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Added Sugar, Subtracted Science: A New Report and a Labeling Debate at the FDA

As a researcher focused on how science is used and misused in policy debates, I’ve seen more than my fair share of interference in (what should be) evidence-based decision making. But when I first dug into the details featured in our new report, Added Sugar, Subtracted Science, even I had to raise an eyebrow. Read More

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As School Year Ends, Will Congress Fail Lunch?

UPDATE (June 12, 3:40 p.m.): The House vote on the school nutrition waiver, expected last night, was postponed. According to reporting by the New York Times today, the vote has been delayed “until sometime next week,” although that could change. Meanwhile, the public can keep writing to Congress in support of healthy school meals!

A Congress that is already routinely failing science is poised to flunk an even simpler school subject: lunch. As early as this evening, the House of Representatives is expected to vote on a bill to fund the U.S. Department of Agriculture, including school nutrition programs. Shockingly, the bill they’ll vote on contains a provision that would roll back new healthy school food standards, just as they are starting to bear fruit. Read More

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Successes in Reducing Deforestation and the Global Warming Pollution it Causes

I’m now in Bonn at the United Nations climate negotiations, where the big news is that in the last week the world’s two biggest emitters – China and the United States – have announced important actions to cut their carbon pollution, especially from the coal that they burn. These steps are welcome, but they are plans, not accomplishments, and they come late compared to other countries that have already acted to reduce their carbon dioxide emissions.

Ironically, most of these successes are in tropical developing countries, where countries’ reductions in rates of deforestation and in some cases their reforestation of cleared land have cut their net emissions of global warming pollution. Their actions have already accomplished more for the climate than the actions of many developed nations have.

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Fed Up and Sugared Out with the Food Fight over Facts

A calorie is not a calorie,” explained Dr. Robert Lustig, pediatric endocrinologist and advisory board member for the new film Fed Up. As he spoke, Lustig sliced into a juicy steak, accompanied by a green salad and a glass of red wine. “However,” he quipped in reference to food industry sniping against public health advocates’ sugar intake recommendations, “I am not the food police! By all means, order dessert!” Read More

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How Monsanto Supersized a Problem in Under Three Minutes

Well actually, it took about 5 years for our friends at the Monsanto Company to start turning regular old weeds into a crisis of “superweeds.” But they did it, and another decade on, farmers everywhere are paying the price. Now, using the magic of speed-drawing, we’ve taken this age-old tale of weedy villains and chemical “superheroes” (with fatal flaws), and boiled it down to just 2:29. Read More

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Fed Up about Food? New Film Highlights Concerns around Sugar, Science, and Democracy

Today, a new documentary entitled Fed Up premieres in 19 cities. Different from other films that detail the problems that plague our food system, Fed Up focuses on a single entity that is responsible for widespread health impacts in the United States: sugar. Read More

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Are You Swallowing Sugar-coated Science—All for a Good Cause?

National parks conservation. Getting kids to read. Breast cancer awareness. These are all great causes, and it can be worth applauding when corporations donate a portion of their profits to supporting them.

But corporate social responsibility by food companies should be scrutinized carefully. Read More

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Farms, Forests, and Climate Change: Few Opportunities, Many Challenges

Farmers and foresters already face a great deal of uncertainty in their professions. All it takes is a few weeks of intense drought, a single hailstorm, or an uncontrolled wildfire to destroy the results of their labors, and with it, their livelihoods. Read More

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Blind Faith vs. Insight: Employing Media Literacy to Reject Policies that Harm Human Health

Guest Bogger

Melinda Hemmelgarn, Registered Dietitian
Food Sleuth Radio, KOPN

Columbia, MO

As a dietitian who attempts to connect the dots between food, health and agriculture, my first job is to help my audiences think ecologically—to understand ripple effects—or how one influences others. Read More

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