Cuss you Chocolate Milk.

I used to like you. You tasted good and you were an occasional treat I could feel good about. Sure you had as much sugar as a soda, but you had the added benefits of milk. But as I said as an occasional treat you rocked.

Look at you all tasty and stuff.

Now they are trying to sell chocolate milk as a health food. At first I laughed. But as I have seen more and more of this ad campaign it’s beginning to enrage me. Sure chocolate milk has some great things. In fact it has all of the great things that regular milk has with more sugar. And yes, those great things like the glucose that helps protein enter your cells and the carbs but that does not make it a health food.

Our society has become obsessed with parts of food. And this isn’t a rant about only eating chicken breasts and pork tenderloin. But breaking down food into its nutrients and vitamins instead of looking at food as a whole. We can’t see the forest for the trees as it were. Instead of thinking about food as a powerful experience that can bring people together to nourish body and soul, we think of it as a way of getting more protein and carbs into our systems.

Just because something has a nutrient in it, the item is not necessarily good for you.

Yes Lucky Charms might have 2g of fibre, but that does not make them the best choice for a healthy breakfast.

I’ve recently read a wonderful book that touches on the topic of dissecting our food along with the erosion of our food culture called ‘ Outside the Box: Why Our Children Need Real Food Not Food Products’ by the lovely Jeannie Marshall. It’s a really interesting read for those who have kids or don’t about a Canadian girl who moves to Italy and struggles with the world’s changing views on food as she tries to feed her young son.

The best piece of advice I’ve picked up from the book about teaching kids… and let’s face it, many adults, about how to eat healthy is to make sure you are eating a wide variety of colours. If you are eating real food (ie it didn’t come from a box) and there are several colours on your plate per meal, you will be eating a balanced diet and you can stop worrying about your vitamin C intake and start enjoying your food again.

I’ve got a copy of Jeannie’s book to give away to one lucky Ottawa reader! All you need to do is leave a comment on this post telling me your biggest food pet peeve. It can be anything – hell you can even make it up. I’ll pick a winner at random in a couple days time.

Until then happy eating and up yours chocolate milk marketers.