Tuesday, September 25, 2007

No Doughnuts for You!

Oh great. From Protein Wisdom comes the news story of some seniors in Putnam County, New York, who have been told that doughnuts may no longer be donated to their senior centers: "Officials were concerned that the county was setting a bad nutritional precedent by providing mounds of doughnuts and other sweets to seniors."

Oh yes, the nanny state groweth apace:
Stan Tuttle, coordinator of nutritional services for the county's Office for the Aging, said the program had gotten out of control. As many as 16 cases of breads, cakes and pastries were delivered, by various means, to the William Koehler Memorial Senior Center each day...

Caregivers there and elsewhere say the doughnut debate illustrates the difficulty of balancing nutrition and choice when providing meals to the elderly.

"Senior citizens can walk down to the store and buy doughnuts. Nobody's stopping them," said Michael Jacobson, executive director of the Center for Science in the Public Interest in Washington.

But he notes that older people have high rates of heart disease and high blood pressure and says senior citizen centers, nursing homes and assisted-living centers should not be worsening the health problems of seniors.
More and more, it seems Food is shaping up as the new Tobacco. Like a thunderhead on the far horizon, the day is coming when they'll sue Mickey D's and Hardee's and Wendy's for gigabucks, and Big Brother will tell all of us to eat our veggies and don't you dare touch those eeeevil doughnuts.

The "second-hand smoke" of Food will arrive when they institute the coming "big fix" to the health care system. Once the federal government embroils itself in health insurance for all, it will become incumbent upon us to follow government suggestions orders regarding what you eat, how much you exercise, and whether you take your prescribed medications. Mustn't up your neighbor's tax burden by not living right, you know.

Perhaps your food purchases will be tracked and entered into a centralized database as they're scanned at the supermarket, and the cash register will beep when you try to go over your government-mandated allotment: "Oh, I'm sorry, we can't sell you any more doughnuts this month, you've used up your junk food ration for September." Perhaps it will become illegal to purchase any food that is not scanned and entered into the database. Visions of furtive purchases of black-market doughnuts in some back alley...

You think I'm kidding? Well, only slightly. You think I'm being paranoid? Well, not long ago I would've thought so too; though one has only to listen to Presidential hopeful John Edwards' recent health care recommendations to realize that nightmare scenarios like these can no longer be entirely written off as black-helicopter paranoia...

Like I say, Food is shaping up as the new Tobacco.

(h/t Naftali @ Dean's World)

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