Children Are Likely To Be Less Healthy Than Their Parents


This is what French nutritionist Dr Laurent Chevallier reckons. In his opinion the food industry adds far too many artificially made compounds to food products and thus we are bound to pay the price sooner or later.

The additives Laurent Chevallier denounces are :
flavor enhancers, chemical flavorings, sugar substitutes, trans fats and sulfites.

He also condemns vague labelling. For instance a label on a Coke bottle reads plant extracts. For him the consumer should be entitled to know what the plants included are.

Children ar more at risks as they eat more processed food than we did when we were their age. As a consequence by the time they are 40, they will have eaten far more of these additives.

Dr Chevallier also denounces food agencies as he finds them too lenient. They prefer to forbid products that are deemed dangerous rather than allow safe ones.

Finally he suggests we read labels more attentively and refuse to purchase food products which contain more than 3 of these additives even if he acknowledges that they are not equally dangerous.

Is this something that worries you? How do you encourage your kids to eat healty food?


9 thoughts on “Children Are Likely To Be Less Healthy Than Their Parents

  1. This is definitely something that worries me! And it makes sense to me that each generation is getting progressively less healthy than the one before it. It’s a scary thought.

  2. My kids are grown but this stuff has worried me for some time. Some of our food doesn’t even taste the same. Chicken for instance. It just doesn’t taste the same to me. No telling what they shoot into the chickens and how it affects us.

  3. It does worry me, but I feel I have little control over it. I do my best and try to provide as much healthy stuff as I can, but sometimes it feels like a losing battle.

  4. Sacry how all of you more or less think there isn’t much you can do about it and you are health-conscious mothers. Makes you wonder about other kids.
    Concerning chickens and what you can do (or not) to them, I reckon France – or the EU at large even – has more stringent laws than the US. Injecting hormones is forbidden for instance.

  5. I try to buy most of my food from the produce section. I feel fortunate that our butcher shop has kosher organic chickens, and they are not *that* much more than the others. If more people bought organic, the prices would drop.

    Even the produce has gone down in nutritional value. It’s not just the taste of the tomato, it’s the ground in which it’s grown.

    I think as consumers we do have some control. If more of us would buy the healthier products, businesses would provide more and at a lower price. Trader Joes is a great example. They sell healthy food in bulk, so prices are cheaper and lots of people buy there. Wish they had one closer to me.

  6. Most of what I’ve read about food additives is cause for concern. But the demand for low prices (at least in the U.S.) is what drives the market: chickens and cows are kept in close quarters, in unhealthy conditions that impede their growth, necessitating vaccinating them and the growth hormones. This cuts costs for the livestock owners.

    And as far as fruits and vegetables are concerned (again, in the U.S.), buying from the mega-farms means buying produce that has been treated with herbicides, fungicides, and pesticides. Buying organic reduces the amount of these chemicals, though the U.S.’s relaxed definition of “organic” (last time I checked) allows produce to be labeled organic that has been grown in soil that hasn’t been chemically treated for three years. I don’t reckon the chemicals in the soil disappear after three years.

    In response, the Cap’n and I have opted to eat less meat overall, and (when possible) to buy locally grown produce from smaller farms. This last thing is particularly important for the following reasons:
    1) Since pesticides, etc. are expensive, small farmers often test the soil and examine plants to see what they need rather than treating them according to a regimen. This often results in less chemicals on the plants.
    2) Locally grown produce is usually fresher and often tastes better.
    3) Supporting local farmers keeps farming local. When local farmers go out of business and have to sell their land to developers, that land gets built up and can never be reclaimed for farming.

    Europe is a more expensive place to live than the U.S., but perhaps the quality of life is better overall.

  7. Leora: I guess you’re right about using our power as customers. I personally prefer to buy less meat but of a better quality.
    Shimshonit: Thanks for your insights and the link to the NYTimes online.

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