By this point, we all know that most people eat things that are terrible for them on a regular basis.
But it’s not all our fault: Americans get help in their bad eating habits from the companies that rely on those habits for profit, Jon Stewart argued in a segment on Tuesday’s The Daily Show.
Stewart targeted “Big Agra and the food lobby” for feeding us what he called an “addictive, fattening, death menu of artificial chemicals, antibiotics, and cool ranch carcinogens,” and ridiculed the ways companies are responding to Americans’ increased dietary awareness.
“Screw your health study”
Rather than back off in the face of health concerns, some companies are doubling down.
Stewart highlighted a new deep dish pizza wrapped in three and a half feet of bacon from Little Caesar’s, plus advertisements for “endless” buffets and appetizers and Olive Garden’s “buy one, take one” entree special.
He called this the “I don’t give a f*** approach,” by which fast food companies essentially say “screw your health study.”
A tiny, tiny bit better
Next, Stewart ridiculed “the making-food-slightly-less-bad-for-you craze.”
In this category, we see McDonald’s announcing plans to phase out chicken raised with antibiotics from its menu — “I’ll miss treating my ear infections with the buffalo ranch chicken,” Stewart jokes — and Dunkin’ Doughnuts planning to eliminate titanium dioxide from its powdered doughnuts. (The chemical, which makes food and also things like toothpaste appear bright white, is classified as safe by the FDA.)
Needless to say, however, chicken nuggets and doughnuts still don’t qualify as healthy food.
Buying a fig leaf
Stewart reaches maximum scorn levels when he addresses companies that don’t actually change their products at all, but pretend to be better through crafty PR.
His case in point is Kraft, which got the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics‘ “Kids Eat Right” label on its Kraft Singles after donating to the Academy to support the program. (To be fair, the label says in small type “supporter of” Kids Eat Right — not “approved by” or some such.) Kraft Singles are labelled “pasteurized cheese product,” not even real cheese.
“It turns out the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is an academy in the same way this [Kraft Singles] is cheese,” Stewart quipped.
Check out the whole video below, courtesy of Comedy Central.
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