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Medical Centers or Pushers?

A few days ago I had to take my son for blood work.  We went to the new Medical Centre.  A big, beautiful full service medical building.  With labs, GP’s and specialists; this is an impressive place.  Walking up the first thing I notice is the smell… cigarette smoke and there right beside the door is a rather large lady in a disability scooter blowing smoke right into the building.  Now I am not one to judge the first thing I think is “good she’s here for help”.

I tend to give people the benefit of the doubt; I felt sorry for her.  Not too much older than myself this lady had to rely on a scooter to get around.  Hoping that she gets the help she needs I usher my son into the building to head up to the lab.  Of course before heading up we make a pit stop, while waiting in the hall my eyes are drawn to the vending machine.  I normally just pass these by without a second thought however this one has a large sign “Fresh Healthy Vending”.  Intrigued what exactly “fresh healthy vending” is I move closer to take a look.

WOW!  All I can say is OMG WOW!  Seriously!  A medical centers’ idea of fresh and healthy is: potato chips, Doritos, candy bars, gummy candies and pop?????

My mind is completely blown.  Yep my head just blew right off.  Dear son comes over and starts laughing even this 14 year old thinks it ridiculous to have a vending machine labeled as healthy.

With obesity, heart disease, diabetes and a slew of other health issues on the rise how can a medical centre offer its patients snack choices such as these and then label them healthy?

Now I fully get that the vending company is called “Fresh Healthy Vending” and this has nothing to do with what is offered inside the machine; however you have to realize that this IS a misrepresentation that is done completely on purpose.  I have to ask: Does the medical community want to keep us sick?

Let’s delve deep into conspiracies here and say that the medical community wants these “healthy” choices so that they can keep people overweight and sick.  Let’s face it money is made all around when the population makes these purchases.  First off the snack company makes money.  Then the doctors make money because people don’t feel well after polishing off the 10th pop of the day.  So what does good old doc do?  Prescription time!  Pharmaceutical sales go up.  Finally the government gets a portion of all this at every level.  Taxes for the companies, the doctors and the patients.

Okay maybe, just maybe I went a little far there J In reality they probably had no idea what the vending machines would carry.  Perhaps it is the building management company who leases out the areas to the vending machine company.  Doctors probably have zero say.  Still if this was a build I worked in I would be putting up a BIG fuss.  As I have said before education is key.

My son understands that these are not “healthy” snacks.  He found this machine and the 3 others we saw in the building comical.  BUT he is a minority.  There are too many children, pre-teens and teens that would not think twice about emptying their pockets for these “healthy” snacks.  They often have no idea that many juices are pumped full of high fructose corn syrup, that those “fruit gummies” are packed full of artificial flavors and colours.  Things that contribute to weight gain, toxin build-up and promote cravings for more of the same.

A press release put out by the Obesity Health Alliance stated that the average child is eating the equivalent of 5 doughnuts or 20 chocolate chip cookies a day in “hidden” sugar.  Hidden sugars are those that are added to fruit juices, added to breakfast cereal, canned soup, prepared meals and more.  At a time when WHO (World Health Organization) is calling for companies to produce food products consistent with a healthy diet medical centres should really take better care of their choices.

It’s time to educate our youth so that they are not sitting outside of a medical building at 40 unable to walk hooked up to an oxygen tank.

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