Hilton Hotels Corporation Eat Right
By Al Ferrone Sr Director F&B Marketing, Hilton | October 28, 2008
Food is not only supposed to be good for you, but it is also supposed to taste good. I often think about why the Europeans aren't as enthusiastic as the Americans about the new diet fads. Can you imagine going to France or Italy and telling their residents to stop eating bread or pasta? They would run you out of the country on a baguette and revoke your visa.
As I travel through the supermarket's precious aisle space, I notice that items are being replaced with reformulated products that have been altered for the low-carb fad that food makers are convinced is here to stay. There are low-carb potato chips, low-carb cookies, low-carb ice cream and even low-carb pizza. Since I'm Italian, this goes against everything I understand about food. Give me a break! Do the manufacturers of these foods think that people who eat these kinds of products are really looking for a lifestyle change or if they are just looking for a temporary indulgence while they're on temporary diets?
Beverage companies have ventured down the same path. There's low-carb beer, lower-than-low-carb beers and soft drinks that went from diet to zero everything.
Other diets have also become popular. The South Beach diet is one of the more popular ones that add to the diet confusion. What if I don't live in South Beach Miami and live in Minnesota? Is the South Beach diet right for me? Of course, that's a rhetorical question, in case you were wondering.
I am not saying that these diets do not work. They do. The question I have is "How long can the public remain on these diets?" As we now know, not very long. Fad diets can be very strict and regimented, and the moment a person stops adhering to them, the battle of the bulge starts all over again. In the height of fad diets, fast-food chains are still seeing healthy sales. The only ones who really complained about the Atkins diet were certain doughnut manufacturers whose problems ran deeper than the low-carb hype.
To further confuse matters, a high-carb diet fad had the government announcing that it was in the process of reworking the nutrition food pyramid. Subsequently, since the new pyramid was introduced, things have become more confusing.