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July 6, 2013
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The future of foods discussed at Copper Mountain's Wanderlust Festival

The acronym for the standard American diet is SAD, said a group of panelists at the Wanderlust Festival at Copper Mountain on Saturday.

The American food system’s focus on convenience — in lieu of nutrition — is contributing to unhealthy lifestyles, according to a group of doctors and chefs involved in the panel discussion.

“One of the big problems is American dining right now,” said celebrity chef and restaurateur Hugh Acheson. “Breakfast is Dunkin’ Donuts, lunch is McDonald’s and dinner is Kentucky Fried Chicken.”

All of these foods equate to a really horrible diet overall, the chef said.

“People see that sandwich as a good deal,” he said. “It’s not a good deal in the long term for their bodies; it’s not even a good idea for the short term.”

Acheson was joined by Drs. Mark Hyman and Sara Gottfried, Lyfe Kitchen Retail Inc. CEO Steve Sidwell and Lyfe Kitchen chef John Mitchell in the food forum panel discussion about health and the future of cooking in America. Their presentation was part of the Wanderlust Festival’s Speakeasy lecture series on subjects “pertaining to the mindful life,” according to the festival website.

The panel said there has been an intentional disenfranchisement of Americans from their kitchens — a deliberate focus on convenience and an outsourcing of cooking to the industrial food system.

“That’s created a whole set of problems, putting in foods that are highly refined and processed,” Hyman said. “We have generation of American’s who don’t know how to cook. They’ve had their kitchens hijacked — their taste buds and their brain chemistry hijacked by the food industry.”

Lyfe Kitchen representatives said the key to getting Americans to eat better is to make whole foods easier to obtain.

“If we make it easy to do the right thing, then people will do it,” Sidwell said.

The food gurus said Americans also need to learn what to buy and how to cook it. This could require a change in food culture.

“In order to change behavior we have to have a whole experience around food,” Sidwell said. “Eating healthy has to be cool.”

Americans also need to realize that food is part of a bigger system, the panel said.

“The things you put on your fork every day have enormous implications for how we grow our food and what’s happening with the environment — from our water supply to the soils to climate change, the health of our populations, the health of our economy to our global competitiveness and national security,” Hyman said. “All of those things are affected by what you put on your fork. If you understand that, the choices you make are going to be different.”

“In order to change behavior we have to have a whole experience around food,” Sidwell said. “Eating healthy has to be cool.”


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The Summit Daily Updated Jul 8, 2013 09:59AM Published Jul 6, 2013 10:46PM Copyright 2013 The Summit Daily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.