Wednesday, December 03, 2014

Is it the people or the food?

According to an article titled, “Fat to blame for half a million cancers a year, WHO agency says,” the World Health Organization (WHO) has reportedly said that “some half a million cases of cancer a year are due to people being overweight or obese.”  In the article, the author underlines how the WHO says the problem is acute in North America.  The writer also cites a study published in The Lancet Oncology that suggests that a high body mass index (BMI) has become a major cancer risk factor and that it is responsible for about 3.6 percent (481,000) of new cancer cases in 2012.  Specifically in Europe, it is purported that “obesity is to blame for around 6.5 percent of all new cancers a year, or around 65,000 cases.”  Furthermore, it is stated that cancers linked to obesity and being overweight are anticipated to increase along with economic development.  The article advises that the findings “underlined the importance of helping people maintain a healthy weight to reduce their risk of developing a wide range of cancers, and of helping developing countries avoid the problems currently faced by wealthier ones.”

After reading the article, I couldn’t help but ask myself the following questions: Is it the people themselves who each too much, become overweight, and then get cancer?  Or is it the garbage that is put in the food that causes people to become overweight and get cancer?  Or worse still, is it the garbage that is put into the food that we consume that causes people to get cancer?

I find it convenient (and suspicious) how the findings point toward the need to “help” people maintain a healthy weight to reduce the risk of developing cancer.  To me, this is like attributing all of the blame to the people who are eating the junk-filled food and none to the conglomerate producers of the poisoned foods that increase the risk of cancer.  Truthfully, it might be that all of the additives placed in the food by the conglomerates that in turn cause people to overeat and become overweight.  It is these same chemicals that are at the root of the cancers, not the people!

What is the government doing to “help” you ask?  Nothing!  We continue to see the same glamourous-looking fast food ads on TV and all of the “flavourings” that continue to be sanctioned by the governing bodies!  So, what is the moral to the story?  You guessed it: Blame it on fast foods!

- B. J. T. Pepin