Dr. David Kessler, former FDA commissioner in the U.S. under both Presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton, was interviewed on August 3, 2009 on
the DemocracyNow! radio program and cable TV show. He confirms that the food industry has learned that the combination of fat, sugar, and salt in
manufactured foods stimulates us to eat more. Bottom line: Yes, we are being set up by food manufacturers for deliberate food addictions, especially
to restaurant food, but there are a number of ways we can fight back. Here is the transcript of that full interview:
And here is a link to the original start page for that interview, which includes a video version, an audio version, and an MP3 version:
He also has a new book out, The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite. Here's the Amazon link for that book:
In the DemocracyNow! interview, Kessler gives some interesting examples of how restaurant meals are especially problematic, since few if any
restaurants give detailed nutritional information at the point of purchase, although more and more restaurant websites do have that info online. I
was disillusioned, for instance, when I found out that almost all of the bagel varieties at Western Bagel have quite a lot of sugar added ... so
That's why I had such a craving for them. Hmmmmm.
In the interview, they are joined at one point by journalist Arun Gupta, who was also previously interviewed about food on the DemocracyNow! show.
Gupta discusses a flavor added to bacon, a flavor known in Japan as "umami." Umami is the fifth flavor, after sweet, salty, sour, and bitter; it is
known in Japan as "deliciousness." It is a meaty, savory flavor (think MSG and its derivatives). As Gupta says in the Kessler interview, "
(Umami) is highly addictive ... it elicits an actual neurochemical, physiological response."
Kessler's book does a lot more deconstruction of particular restaurant foods, such as Cinnabon and the Big Mac. Kessler is a pediatrician, by the
way, and a former medical school dean at Yale and at UCSF.
In the interview, Kessler describes how he asked a restauranteur what is the most important thing customers should ask in a restaurant about the food,
and the restauranteur answered, "Ask where the food comes from. If the restaurant doesn't know where the food is coming from, think twice before
ordering it." -- That's a very cool answer, I'd say.
Oops, just noticed that at the top of the ATS website right now, there's a banner ad for Pizza Hut. I found out that recently Pizza Hut started
adding a considerable amount of sugar to their pizza crust. How about that? I used to love Pizza Hut pizza until they made that change.
[edit on 8/5/2009 by Uphill]