“Bet you just can’t eat one.”

Professor Kim Hekimian tells us what the food industry is up to.


Photo Credit: Victoria Messikian

Are you eating something as addictive as cocaine?

The same weight as cars, the heart of a blue whale, and large dairy cows, America’s heaviest man once weighed-in at 1,400 pounds.

Today, Americans hear about obesity and healthy eating all the time but most do not know when the “obesity epidemic” began.  According to leading experts, there’s a correlation between the increase in obesity and the food industry’s push to add addictive additives (such as high fructose corn syrup) to our food.

After the depression in the United States, the government subsidized corn in the 1930’s so that there would be food security in our country. After some time, there became an overabundance of corn, which caused the food industry to latch onto this crop. This led to the production of high fructose corn syrup, which is included in most of our processed foods.

What most people do not realize is that high fructose corn syrup can be as addictive as cocaine. Over the last few years, the public and the health care industry have come to understand the scheme that the food industry has directed toward the American people: to become addicted to their products.

According to Professor Kim Hekimian PhD., at Columbia University, “The food industry markets and creates the products that are cheapest for them so that they can make the most profit.” Professor Hekimian believes that the rising obesity epidemic is fueled by the greed of food manufacturers who add corn syrup and other additives to our foods because it’s a cheap form of flavor and preservative and because its addictive factor causes us to buy more.

“The food industry recognizes our vulnerability,” she says.

But Americans are no longer ignorant to this machination.  Since the American people have made these realizations, there have been many campaigns to get us to eat healthier food and live healthier lifestyles.

First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move campaign is one way that our country is trying to save itself from the “obesity epidemic.” More and more American citizens need to become aware and active in campaigning against food industries and their unhealthy products.

“The food industry does not care about public health at all,” said Professor Hekimian, “I don’t think we can rely on them at all. If they were to do a public health campaign it would be like David and Goliath; just not possible.”