When you go to sleep at night, chances are you’ve had a full meal earlier that evening, but every night almost one billion people in the world go to bed hungry. (1) There are over 30 million Americans that fall into this statistic, 13 million of them are children. While there are several assistance programs such as food stamps, WIC and the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), children are still going to bed hungry for various reasons, such as income just above the poverty line, that disqualifies a household for food stamps and other federal assistance. Undernourishment brings a set of problems that impact the person’s ability to function and work in order to earn a living and improve their living conditions. Malnourished people suffer from weakened immune systems and fall victim to disease more readily. Undernourished children are also at a developmental risk that will impact them for their entire lives. The UN (United Nations) statistics on world hunger reveal that one out of seven people in the world don’t have enough food to live a healthy and active life. In America, one out of four children lives in what is termed as food insecurity, which means not always having access to food. (1) Of all the statistics, the most alarming and devastating is the one posted on the Seed Programs International (SPI) website: “Every year more than 10 million children die of hunger and preventable diseases – that’s over 30,000 per day and one every 5 seconds”. (2)
Browsing food production
Most Americans trust that the food their family eats and the medications their doctors prescribe are safe and free of unwanted contaminates. This wide-scope view may be true, but when brought under the microscope of scrutiny, the guidelines that the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) uses may surprise and even scare you. (1) America has some of the most rigid guidelines for food and drug production in the world, and yet, these rules are far from perfect. In fact, in examining the FDA approval history, many claim that the FDA leans in the direction of the Big Pharma and Food Conglomerates when implementing these guidelines, instead of the American consumer. For example, in a recent CBS report on food production, it was discovered that the FDA has percentage tolerances for various foreign particles in US food products. (2) These particles include rat hair often found in peanuts and processed along with the nuts into peanut butter. Roach and other insect feces might be found in spices such as cinnamon. But wait, you may also find fly eggs in canned tomatoes since tomatoes seem to be a fruit fly’s favorite reproduction medium. If these aren’t enough to churn your stomach, consider the FDA’s allowance of up to 12% mold in apples for applesauce and other canned apple products. Other insects and parasites often find their way into shelf products, but perhaps the most disconcerting particulates are non-animal, such as cigarette butts, sand, stones and even sticks.