Since the Associated Press just reminded us again that you can't trust a food label to be accurate, Crabby thought she'd use their article as an excuse for a little rant. She's tired of swearing at her computer, and now that it's fixed, she thought it might be time to get back to her more usual swearing about Health and Fitness annoyances!
And Crabby doesn't mean those obviously Scammy Miracle Weight Loss Products marketed by skeezy fly-by-night companies you've never heard of. This is mainstream, government sanctioned lying by big Fortune 500 companies. No doubt they all have the usual corporate mission statements about "delighting customers" and "exceeding expectations" and offering "extraordinary quality and value!" They never seem to include "Lying our Pants Off to Make People Think Crap that Will Eventually Kill them is Actually Good for Them" into those mission statements.
Anyway, what the AP article is talking about is labels that say "zero trans fats."
You've seen these. Say you're at the grocery store and you pick up a package of Tempting Junk Food that you know probably isn't good from you. But, at least it has finally switched away from Evil Trans-fats. It's packaging shouts out "Now with Zero Transfats!" Good news!
But then you look further on down at the ingredients, and one of them is "partially hydrogenated something-or-other oil." Hey, what gives? Isn't that a Trans Fat?
Yep, of course it is! Even though the package has quite a few transfats in it, they've declared an arbitrary, teeny tiny portion is "a serving." And because our always-helpful government agencies allow them to declare that .5 grams of something is really "zero"--all the trans-fats in the package simply disappear!
Why is it a hardship to put the actual amount of transfats on the label? Crabby speculates that the extra ink it takes to print .5 instead of 0 must be really expensive. Or something.
This doesn't mean there's necessarily a lot of transfats in the product. There may not be. But half a gram is not zero! It's a lie! And you can't even figure out for yourself how much is in the whole package, because apparently they don't have to tell you.
This drives Crabby crazy. Because unlike you Smart Readers, average consumers don't necessarily know about the cheaty rounding rules, or to look for partially hydrogenated oils on the label. They think if it there's a big banner saying there's Zero Transfats in a product, that means there aren't actually any transfats, no matter how much you eat. Which is wrong, but actually quite logical.
It's not just transfats either. Splenda is very low-cal, but it doesn't actually have "zero" calories in it. And have you ever bought a can of Pam "Fat Free" Olive Oil and wondered what the hell is supposed to be in there if there's no fat? How can there be no fat or calories in a can full of Oil? (Crabby doesn't buy it anymore anyway, since it smells more like paint thinner than olive oil, and she's no longer afraid of Good Fats). But still. They use a microsecond spray as a serving until they find one less than .5, then round down. And again, by magic, all the fat and calories in a can of Olive Oil simply cease to exist.
There are only about 37 million more examples of deceptive advertising like this (and don't let Crabby Go Off on "Now Made With Whole Wheat" yet again) but she thought she'd share another new twist she discovered.
Crabby herself is now Virtually Fat Free!
At least that must be the explanation. Because here's what happened:
Crabby hates to shop for clothes and has not done much of it in the past few years. But she went off to Macy's over the weekend and braved a One Day Sale. She actually bought things! Including shorts.
And Crabby is pleased to announce she has dropped two sizes! All her hard work has paid off. She now wears a size that is so small it barely exists. It might as well be a Zero! (Which is now, apparently, an actual size). Crabby had to keep going back for more clothes because she couldn't quite believe how much she had accomplished over these last years.
The interesting thing is that it was so easy! She's just doing the same cardio, the same weights, eating the same mostly healthy but sometimes Abominable diet, yet the labels prove she is so much thinner than she used to be.
The strange thing, though, is that all her old clothes with the much bigger number on the label still fit her just fine. They should be hanging off her! Obviously, the dryer must have shrunk them. Also, her bathroom scale must be out of order because it still has the same old range of numbers it always did.
Because to arbitrarily declare that a pair of shorts that has not changed dimensions is nonetheless now a "smaller" size? That would be dishonest and misleading, wouldn't it?
Crabby is so very, very proud of herself!