Popeye's Didn't Do It by Damian Mosley (The Root): LA's trying to curb obesity by limiting fast-food restaurants in low-income neighborhoods. Mosley argues fast-food restaurants are only a small part of the problem. As he writes, obesity rates "also hinge on the way people shop, cook, exercise and the amenities available for each task." Do I ever agree! And yet . . . one has to start somewhere.
Americans Are Swimming in Calories, USDA Data Shows by Marc (Ethicurian): Marc "the Mental Masala" could really use an editor to tame his wonkitude, but the guy knows how to play with Excel. He takes some numbers just released by the USDA that show that, between 1970 and 2004, the number of calories per day available to Americans (basically, food produced for stores and restaurants) has increased by 500 -- a 24 percent increase. Plotting out the data, Marc's come up with a couple of graphs that show all those extra calories come in the form of added fats, flour and grain products, and added sugars.
Growing a Future by Jillian Daley (Salem Statesman Journal, via the Food Times): The Hoover Elementary School program in Salem, Ore., teaches kids to garden and gives the food they grow to low-income families. My liberal heart is swelling, and not because of those added calories.