Soda Pop Sluts - An Unfrosted FairyTale

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Once upon a time, in the land of USA, the farmers were happy and productive.  They were so productive, especially with the golden ears of corn they grew, that soon they surpassed even the king's wildest dreams of how much corn they could possibly grow.  All the greatest wizards in the land put their heads together to figure out what was to be done with all that huge surplus of corn.  Mounds of the stuff were molding away all over the land and it was expensive to ship, not to mention smelling bad. Well, it didn't take too long.  Corn can be made into syrup, specifically "high fructose corn syrup".  The wizards then discovered HFCS, as they lovingly called their creation for short, can be put into almost anything that people eat, in place of sugar and more cheaply, too.  It's especially wonderful for sodas, which the people loved.

Another group of wizards was involved in making food fast, packaged, processed and convenient.  At first they started with simple stuff, but once they discovered HFCS, they put it just about everything they made, and discovered the people loved it just as much as the sodas they drank when they ate it. There were a  couple of wizards who kept droning on about nutrition and obesity and a responsibility towards the health of the people, but they were quietly and efficiently turned out of the kingdom by the court jesters who made advertisements.  Nobody wants to listen to boring statistics when they're eating cheeseburgers, French fries and sugar-coated cereals, not to mention the great taste of Coke and Pepsi.

The king and his advisors gave lots of money to the farmers to keep growing way too much corn, (called subsidies) so the food processors could make HFCS and put it in lots and lots of foods, and those royal edicts continue to this very day.

So, in the land of USA even today, some thirty years later or so, a few people are richer, and everyone is happy, and...much fatter, spending more time going to doctors and worrying about their cholesterol and blood pressure. (Television and video games helped a lot with that too, cause it's really fun to sit on your ass, eat chips and dips and wash it down with gallons of HFCS sweetened soda.  Hello worried populace on diets, and goodbye to playing outside.)

Since I wrote this in my book Unfrosted: Get Real about Food and Fitness, HFCS has become a buzzword for the American public, worried about obesity.  I wanted to know what had changed, if anything, so I'm doing some research on the chemical breakdown of sweeteners in general, and HFCS in particular, checking clinical studies and public reaction.  I'll post these findings soon, but don't worry, the wasp hasn't lost its sting.  In the meanwhile, drink water, real lemonade, tea and uh..vodka.

Love, Raven