Thursday, September 18, 2008

The Spin Machine is now working for High Fructose Corn Syrup

In these Orwellian Times, I'm glad I don't watch T.V. -- War is Peace, Freedom is Slavery, Ignorance is Strength, and now . . .High Fructose Corn Syrup is not bad for you.

The cynical conceit of these ads are that if you can’t recall at a moment’s notice, all, or any, of the reasons something is negative or undesirable, then your concerns are wholly irrelevant, and you should just shut your mouth, and only open it to receive a generous serving of high-fructose corn syrup. The logic behind these ads assert that because high-fructose corn syrup is “natural,” as it is derived from corn, then it is wholesome and safe, much like natural radon gas, lead and tobacco.


Facts: High-fructose corn syrup is a sweetener produced by processing cornstarch to yield glucose, and then processing the glucose to produce a high percentage of fructose. It is primarily used as a preservative and sweetener in a multitude of food products. You should avoid it because of the following:

1. High-fructose corn syrup has been linked directly to obesity, diabetes and metabolic dysfunction.
2. High-fructose corn syrup elevates triglycerides levels, which can lead to heart disease.
3. High-fructose corn syrup is simply empty calories with no nutritional value whatsoever.
4. The environmental footprint of high-fructose corn syrup is exceedingly large.
5. High-fructose corn syrup is the hellion child of the corn lobby’s satanic forces.

OK, so the fifth one might not be totally accurate, but it does drive the point home. And for extra credit you could mention that consuming high-fructose corn syrup in moderation is becoming near impossible, seeing as nearly everything from sliced bread to salad dressing now proudly contains the ubiquitous ingredient.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Threes events for "healthy girls, strong women"

I just got an email about these events which seem to be really important for those of us raising girls:

Event #1: Please join Planned Parenthood Association of Utah (PPAU) with partners Utah Coalition Against Sexual Assault and the YWCA of Salt Lake City in promoting and supporting the well being of girls and their adult caregivers. Saturday, September 13th at the Mountain View Elementary School (1380 S. Navajo St) from 9:30 - 2pm there will be a Healthy Girls Strong Women Conference for girls age 9-12 and their parents or caregivers. This conference is free and will feature opportunities for girls to learn how to change their lives from the inside out with specific break out sessions on communication, body image and media, HIV/STI prevention, and the rights girls have. Parent/caregiver sessions will be offered in English and Spanish. There will be a keynote that is interactive and brief by Andrea Johnston, cofounder of Girls Speak OutT, lunch is provided and the afternoon will feature a Talk Show created by the girls. All participants will get a simple backpack with some fun prize type stuff inside. Flyers for this free conference are attached in both Spanish and English. To register now email or click this link to the PPAU website for more information

Our guest speaker, co facilitator and trainer for the conference Andrea Johnston is co founder with Gloria Steinem of Girls Speak OutT. Johnston was instrumental in creating a public forum for girls in the UN General Assembly as part of her mission to expand the places where girls belong.

Event #2: For adults who work, volunteer, parent, or want to connect better with girls Andrea Johnston will present a Women's Day Personal/Professional Development Session Tuesday September 16th from 9 am to 3pm at the Unity Center in Salt Lake City: click here to register and find out more information:

Event #3: Wednesday September 17th Andrea will speak about the documentary film Pray the Devil Back to Hell and her work with Girls Speak Out at the opening of the SLC Film Center's Be the Change Film Series at Westminster College. Click here to leam more about the film event. *At the SLC Main Library on Monday, September 15th at 7:00pm there will be a free screening of IRON LADIES OF LIBERIA. This powerful documentary is the perfect sequel to PRAY THE DEVIL BACK TO HELL and follows the first democratically elected woman president in Africa during her first year in office.