Yes, according to a recent New York Times article, junk food began with Cracker Jacks. Apparently back in 1896, two street vendors created this concoction and found a way to mass produce it and sell it in bags that would preserve freshness. The rest of the story is history and....America's growing waistline!!
Tootsie Rolls came next in 1905 in New York and became the first penny candy to be sold individually wrapped. In 1923, by chance, a fellow left a powdered soda drink out on his porch with a wooden stirring stick still in it and - you guessed it-it froze and was found the next morning. Thus was born a new confection that Unilever now sells to the tune of...2 billion (popsicles) a year. In 1928 came the product that could add fun to a chewing experience - bubble gum. In 1930, pans that were used for strawberry shortcakes stood idle when strawberries were out of season. So a cook decided to experiment with baking mini cakes and he injected them with banana crème filling and ...voila, the Twinkie was born. The inventor, Mr. Dewar, boasted at age 83 of eating 3 a day since their creation. That piece of information was not shared to inspire anyone reading this blog!!
In 1975 the 7-11 was born and the effort to access junk food has helped to enable millions of Americans to .....get fat. Because easy access means we avail ourselves of junk food more often than we should. It's no longer a treat, or occasional pleasure, it's a daily food staple. Coffee with trans fat laden creamer in the am and a donut; mid morning croissant and more trans fat laden coffee; lunch is a fast food cheese burger, fries and a large sugar-laden soda; afternoon snack is a blended coffee drink or a vending machine snack; dinner is eaten in front of the TV and is fat, sugar, sodium filled processed food. I'm not sure I would call it food - more like, chemical fortification.
Call me a contentious nutritionist - maybe it's time you stop, really stop and examine what you are feeding yourself and your family. Back in 1896, Cracker Jacks was indeed an occasional sweet pleasure. Today foods like it are daily staples. It's a Twilight Zone in the land of nutrition gone awry.
Diet, exercise, weight gain, Tootsie rolls,Cracker Jacks,Twinkies,trans fats, sugar, calories
Published On: October 18, 2010