Health food stores use every trick they learn from conventional grocery stores to get you to open your wallet.
The food business is still business, including those claiming to be superior because they are selling organic or ‘health’ products. They exist to lure you in and make you buy as much stuff as possible.
Toward that goal, food stores that frame themselves as ‘healthy’ use every trick they learn from conventional grocery stores to get you to open your wallet – but the more you buy, the more you eat and the fatter you get, no matter how healthy you think it is. If you don’t eat what you buy, you are being a big, wasteful, landfill-filling Republican.
What tricks do they use to get you to spend money on things you don’t need and that maybe are going to be bad for the waistline? If you buy a package of cookies on a supermarket shelf, the nutrition information is right there; you know how many calories it is and what is in it. Now go to Whole Foods and buy “gluten-free cupcakes” at their bakery. Where is the nutrition information? Where is the truth in labeling? Why isn’t that included in California’s Proposition 37?
They actually don’t post that nutritional information in the store, despite putting big ol’ labels on anything claiming to be ‘organic’ even if it is imported from China and not verified by anyone. I couldn’t even find nutrition numbers, like calories, online anywhere but David Zinczenko, author of “Eat This, Not That: Supermarket Survival Guide” says he was able to find it. Good luck duplicating his research. I spent more time searching the Whole Foods website for calorie information than it took to write the rest of this article. They list ingredients but not calories – something required by every ‘processed’ food company in the country. About.com says you have to call them to find out. The answer, according to Zinczenko, is 480 calories.
So that vanilla gluten-free cupcake is ‘healthier’? Only if you want to believe the spin. A regular cupcake you make yourself only has 298 calories – but it might have trans fats, which was the War On Food Of 2006.
What to do? Well, not eating any cupcakes is a start but we didn’t become the greatest country in the world rationing and mitigating anything, especially cupcakes, and we are not about to start now. But posting calorie information means people eat less, according to Nitika Garg, associate professor of marketing at the University of Mississippi, who found that people ate 69 percent fewer calories when they saw the calorie numbers before digging in.
So posting calorie information may be good for your health, but it’s bad for business. Which do you think ‘health food’ companies care most about?
Photo credit: Women’s Health
Via Science 2.0