In response to increased economic sanctions from the United States and the European Union (EU) on Russia, the Russian government just banned all imports of food from the United States. And it might have been the smartest thing the country has ever done.
American food is garbage -- plain and simple -- and it's part of the reason that nearly 800,000 Americans die each year from heart disease.
As a consequence of Russia's actions in Ukraine, tensions between the West and Russia have risen to nearly the same level the world witnessed during the Cold War. Some have even dubbed this most recent quarrel, "Cold War II."
Russia's decision to ban imports on all American foods, as well as fruit and vegetables from the European, will undoubtedly raise food prices for most Russians. The country will continue to import food from South America, Asia and Turkey, however. Thus, it's not as if the Russian people will starve.
Yet, there may be a number of added health benefits in terms of no longer eating food produced in America. It is doubtful that this was Russia's motivation in terms of making this decision, but it is true nonetheless.
Let's face it, Americans are some of the world's worst eaters. This is not simply because we eat too much McDonald's; our overall diet is poor in general. As CNN notes, two-thirds of American adults are overweight or obese.
As the Guardian notes, a new American Diet Report Card confirms that Americans eat far too much cheese, sugar, starch and red meats, but don't eat enough fruits and vegetables. At present, Americans consume nearly 500 more calories per day than they did around 30-40 years ago:
...It is because we are far too deferential to the interests of big companies, too invested in a corporate-serving narrative of personal responsibility with no parallel requirement of social responsibility, and too culturally wedded to a food model of quantity over quality.
They have hit the nail on the head; American food corporations care more about profit than they do about people's health.
As CNN notes, 99 percent of farm animals in the United States are raised in factory farms. In some cases, they are raised in cages in which they are not even able to turn around. This is not only inhumane, but also produces meat that is exceptionally unhealthy to consume.
According to ASPCA, birds, such as chickens, have been bred, or genetically manipulated, for hyper-production. Moreover, birds are the most mistreated animals in the United States, as 9 billion are killed for their meat each year, and 300 million more live in tiny cages where they produce eggs for American consumers.
Likewise, as Huffington Post highlights, basically all chickens that are made commercially available possess what is often referred to as the "obese gene."
This gene makes birds gain weight at an extremely rapid weight in order to expedite production time. They are basically bred to be raised and slaughtered as quickly as possible, so that they can be profited off.
In essence, this means that these birds are not really a good source of lean meat. "The amount of fat in modern chicken may be five or even 10 times what it used to be... That's a whole lotta fat, and big trouble for the waistline."
Russia is the second biggest importer of American poultry. Accordingly, by banning the importation of American food, they are saving Russian waistlines from a very unhealthy product, and may also be saving the lives of chickens in the process.
Well played, Vlady.
Photo Courtesy: We Heart It