Monday, January 16, 2012

Underthinking Food Labels

What the s**t Azzy! Is what you are all saying right now. You haven't posted in over 2 months and now you want us to just return and read your blog?
The simple answer is Yes, I know it will take a while to restore the good faith of my readers but I will attempt to start blogging regularly again in the hope to help you pass the dreary work day. Hopefully my two month absence coincided with you sunning yourself in the South Island, and relearning how to swim in the North Island.
"Yeah, just off to the Boxing day sale in Taranaki and you?"

What have I been doing, well numerous things

Trying to eradicate Hippies. (apparently I have put on weight and look slightly cartoony)
I went to Taiwan to attend a Chinese Wedding
.and ended up working on a tea plantation
And Misc other things. So why now, why return to my platform of rage against the underthinkers. Well I was watching the news the other day and I saw an item regarding a plan to place labels on soft drink to indicate to people how much exercise they would have to do to work off the calories in the drink.

Stupid special on 2.25 litre coke, now I have to do this All women's aerobics class.
This is all well and good but like most academics in their ivory towers they have managed to completely oversimplify the situation. (Incidentally I am referring to some one in an ivory tower, as an unworldly dreamer, as opposed to the poor princess that gets named Moonchild by that idiot Sebastian.)
All they did was take the calories in the drink and then calculated what sort of exercise would be required to burn them off.

So What...
Good question world famous musician Pink, I am glad you raised it. It is my understanding that doing anything burns calories.

According to most Scientician's a smile burns 2 calories.
Sure this isn't enough to burn the 141 calories in a can of coke, but it is a start, using this calculator. I discovered just sitting for 30 mins burns 43 calories, so if I just sit for 1.5 hours I have burnt off the can of coke.
The only relevance the 1 hour running for a can of coke, the academics has come up with, is if you are a corpse, who for some reason or another feed a can of coke, and were then re-animated and needed to burn it off.
Must burn off Coke.

If you are like 99.9% of my readership and you are alive, you are burning calories just by your mere existence.
The only other way this equation works is if they start with the assumption people are eating exactly the right amount of calories to cover basic bodily functions every day and that can of coke was on top, in which case you would have to add on the hour run. But how many people are living their lives on such precipice?

Careful, just 3 ml of tea, otherwise I am over for the day.
Now I am not saying that drinking Fizzy isn't bad for you, I am just saying that food label is kind of pointless, and oversimplifies the situation quite dramatically.
I mean why not put these labels on all foods not just unhealthy ones? There is a 105 calories in a Banana.

Hmmm if I eat all these Bananas, I will have to run for 4 hours, better stick to the Coke.
The difference is of course, in unhealthy foods the calories are unbalanced compared to the amount the food actually fills you up, meaning you will eat more and take in more calories than you require.

Upshot is if you want to lose weight remember to keep the following equation in the negatives.

Calories in - Calories out

I think I forgot to carry the 1.


  1. I think that the same people who don't bother to read the nutritional information in the first place are the same people who won't care how much exercise they will have to do to burn it off. I think it's a silly idea.
    P.S. Nice fat man in boat.


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