New Zealand: saving the planet but killing themselves!

Don’t get me wrong, I like sugary foods. We all do, it’s one of the things that the body seems to crave.

However, New Zealand seems to have taken this to an interesting level.

And the reason I say this is because they seem to have added sugar in loads of foods where these things simply don’t belong (well, in my view anyway).

For example: pickled beetroot. I love pickled beetroot (they have it in cans here) but they add sugar to the vinegar and it tastes sweet, too sweet almost.

But there’s loads of other foods where there is unnecessary extra sugar, including sauces, fruit juice drinks, bread, the list goes on.

But the thing is that there is a national debate at the moment about the fact that diabetes is becoming a major health problem (as it is in all westernised countries). One thing under consideration is providing funding for dieticians. This is (in my view) like putting a plaster on a gunshot wound; it’s too late and not nearly enough to tackle the underlying issue.

In contrast the UK govt is proactive in trying to tackle excess sugar in the national diet. They started taxing sugary drinks and this made a small, but measurable, difference in sales of those products. It’ll take a while to see any difference in health stats, but it’s a start.

But I find it really ironic because the Kiwis are extremely keen on managing their environment and (rightly) very proud of the fact that they are world leaders in green policies and sustainable society.

It seems, at least to me, that New Zealand (like the USA) is keener on treating the symptoms than tackling the underlying lifestyle-contributors of diabetes.

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