Some time ago I saw a broadcast from Radar in which Michael Moss is talking about resources in the food industry. As a result of this broadcast, I have read his book ‘Salt, Sugar, Fat’. In this blog, I list some interesting facts from his book. The facts mentioned in the investigations have deepened my view of the food industry.

The basis for obesity has been laid

His book is a report of years of research in the food industry. He discusses what food producers do to make tempting products. For them profitable, but for the consumer, it leads to (unhealthy) weight gain. The products usually contain (too) much salt, sugar, and fat. These three ingredients reinforce each other and give the food their taste, mouthfeel, and crunchiness. Unfortunately, they also lead to obesity.

A number of noteworthy facts

Sugar

  • A child naturally has a preference for sweet and the food industry can respond to this.
  • The bliss point was conceived by Howard Moskowitz and means the concentration at which the sensory pleasure is optimal.
  • Our body has more difficulty recognizing calories in liquids than solid foods, so you can easily get soft drinks.

Fat

  • There is no bliss point for fat and it is made even more delicious by adding sugar, thereby reinforcing each other’s attractiveness.
  • Fat makes products tastier, is a flavor maker and it is therefore very difficult to make products that contain less fat and sell well. For example, cheese without fat cannot be eaten.
  • Cheese is not immediately recognized as fatty food, while it contains a lot of saturated fat. The saturated fat does not stand out because it binds to the protein molecules.

salt

  • We don’t like salt naturally. Because of the small amounts that we receive as a baby, we slowly get used to it. Once we love salt, it has a huge and lasting impact on our eating habits. It is therefore important that you start early and limit the influence.
  • The recommended amount of salt in America is 2300 milligrams and with processed food products you go far beyond it every day.
  • The salt cellar does not cause the large salt intake, but the salt in processed food causes that high amount.

Back to basic

The food industry is logically focused on making a profit. On the other hand, humanity is increasingly suffering from obesity due to the amounts of salt, sugar and fat in products. However, reducing these quantities leads to a lower turnover for producers. So you can expect that this will not happen soon. Until that moment, the only solution is to adopt a healthy lifestyle yourself and opt for unprocessed products, because you will not find healthy food in the paths of processed food.

So back to basics. Ultimately you are the consumer and you make the choice what you buy and how much you eat.