A popular educational program for children is launching a new group of muppets to help educate kids about superfoods, but some are questioning the ulterior motives of the new segment’s Big Pharma sponsors.
For a few years now, the natural foods industry has been going berserk for superfoods.
This catchy moniker is given to certain fruits, vegetables and some fishes that contain a double dose of disease fighting nutrients, vitamins, and antioxidants. Even conventional doctors agree that these superfoods can help keep you healthy when eaten on a regular basis.
Now is seems that the iconic children’s television program Sesame Street is jumping on the superfood bandwagon as well.
A recent press release states:
Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit organization behind Sesame Street, with funding and partnership support of UnitedHealthcare and The Merck Company Foundation, today rolled out Food for Thought: Eating Well on a Budget, a bilingual (English-Spanish) multimedia outreach initiative designed to help support families who have children between the ages of two and eight, cope with uncertain or limited access to affordable and nutritious food.
The Food for Thought program will provide families with an educational outreach kit, which includes an original video featuring the debut of four new Sesame Street Muppets, the “Superfoods.” The video also features Elmo and friends, along with real families as they try new foods, learn about the importance of healthy snacks, and discover that sharing a meal together is a perfect opportunity to connect as a family.
This sounds like a great plan, but there’s one important caveat: the “Superfoods” (like most superheroes) aren’t what they seem to be.
The new muppets are a banana, a block of cheese, a whole wheat hamburger bun and a stalk of broccoli. As Natural News reports, with the exeption of the broccoli, these foods don’t fit the superfood criteria at all.
In fact, the muppets more are reminiscent of the infamous USDA “Food Pyramid” that’s been shown to be heavily influenced by food industry.
Who’s Pulling The Muppet Strings?
The Merck Company, a massive pharmaceutical corporation, has no interest in people getting healthy in a natural, affordable manner. Their financial and editorial involvement in the “Food for Thought” project should be a huge red flag to parents.
And the fact that only one out of 4 of the foods embodied by the new muppets actually lives up to its identity is another.
Partnering to launch a mis-information campaign such as this allows Merck to appear like it’s actually concerned about the health and well-being of children, while behind the scenes they’re working to keep families “trapped in a system of sick care that generates profits for the pharmaceutical industry” (Natural News).
Eating processed cheese (do you think the muppets specify that cheese contains highly addictive substances) and wheat buns that contain high fructose corn syrup does not a healthy child make.
The last thing we need is another generation of adults that assumes most food is good for them just because the government or a television show says so.
If Sesame Street really wants to educate a new crop of healthy kids, they should be getting their information from farmers, nutritionists and holistic practitioners, not a vaccine manufacturer that propagates the idea that health requires a prescription.
Image Credit: seasameworkshop.com