A steady diet of donuts leads to debt

Premier Christy Clark caused a lot of screeching brakes and other variations of media road rage after Jonathon Fowlie’s Vancouver Sun story describing her going through a red light while driving her son through an abandoned intersection at 5:15 am.

But what caught my attention was the sentence.

“In her son’s bag is the pizza and Krispy Kreme doughnut Clark packed for his lunch.”

I know, she’s the most stressed-out single Mom in the province, but it’s surprising she wasn’t aware enough of what that meal signals to the reporter who was in the car.

Christy Clark, as someone who has championed getting junk food out of schools, and someone whose number 1 job is to reduce public debt, should be especially sensitive to the relationship between feeding kids processed foods, sugar and fat rather than fruits and vegetables, and the heart diseases, obesity and other chronic diseases that are swamping our health care system.

The projected growth in health care costs in B.C. will be double the projected tax and royalty returns from the premier’s election campaign showpiece: liquified natural gas plants.

With 80% of health care costs coming from chronic diseases that are mostly brought on by poverty, wrong diet and lifestyle choices, fixing that should be our #1 economic priority.

Talking points on that topic should be on the political food literacy curriculum.


About Urban Food Revolution

Peter Ladner is a former Vancouver city councilor, Metro Vancouver vice-chair and business owner who is currently a weekly columnist at Business in Vancouver newspaper and a regular contributor to crosscut.com, a Seattle-based online news service. He is the author of The Urban Food Revolution: Changing the Way we Feed Cities, published by New Society in November, 2011. For the past two years he has been a Fellow at the SFU Centre for Dialogue researching, teaching and organizing public events around the theme Planning Cities as if Food Matters. He was first elected to Vancouver City Council in 2002, was re-elected in 2005 and ran for mayor in 2008. He is a former member of the TransLink Board, and was vice chair of the Metro Vancouver Board. Peter has been the publisher, president and part owner of the Business in Vancouver Media Group, which he co-founded in 1989. He has a lifelong interest in growing food. As a city councilor, he worked with the Vancouver Food Policy Council in initiating the city’s program to add 2010 food-producing community garden plots by 2010. He is vice-chair of the The Natural Step Canada, part of an international organization that advances sustainability in communities and corporations. He has a B.A. from UBC and did graduate work at the UBC School of Community and Regional Planning. He and his wife Erica have four adult children.
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2 Responses to A steady diet of donuts leads to debt

  1. ChristineH says:

    This post disappoints me. It comes off more like you have an axe to grind with Clark instead of being actually concerned with what her child is eating.

    You don’t know what the pizza was made of, and, you don’t know if this was a one time treat lunch. I realize that quality food is your thing, but there is a lot of distance between a single lunch with a donut in it and obesity/diabetes. I certainly wouldn’t want my whole food philosophy to be judged on a single meal.

    Can you offer some suggestions for how Clark can work different food choices into her lifestyle? If not, your critique is just harsh, and unlikely to effect any change.

    • Fair call, Christine. Of course it’s more than a stretch to make assumptions based on one meal. My point was not to single out the premier as much as to take advantage of that factoid to draw attention to the much bigger, very significant issue: what we eat is slowly killing us and rapidly killing our public finances and needs to be addressed from a prevention point of view, not by building more hospitals.

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