General Discussion

The American sweet tooth


General Discussion 35

The American sweet tooth

Brandon Nelson | Aug 7, 2001 08:12 PM


I though about making a post like this one for a while. The recent corn thread touched on this subject again. I think its time to get the opinions of the other hounds. Does it seem to you that the average American eats way to much sugar? Not just cane sugar, but sugars in general. Even beyond that has anyone noticed a trend towards sweeter vegetables and fruits?

I work in retail grocery. I see what John Q. Public eats on a daily basis; Sugary breakfast cereal, cupcakes disguised as "muffins", soda by the gallon, "energy bars" loaded with sugar, lots of candy.

We have become a fat phobic culture over the last few decades. Sugar replaced fat in salad dressing, processed cheese, light style dairy products, and other foods.

The most frequent question I field (after "where is the restroom?") "Is the... fill in the blank...corn?... watermelon?...grapefruit? SWEET? The store I work in doesn't even stock yellow corn anymore because the general public thinks the white varieties are sweeter.

I have no problem with a sweet ear of corn, a doughnut, or an occasional soda. My point is this, the sweets are becoming more important than they should be. Up until as recently as 150 years ago sugar, honey, maple syrup were all luxury items. They were used more often as an element of seasoning than as a staple. That has sure changed.

European cultures still tend to consume far fewer sweets than Americans do. Frequently their dessert courses are based more on elements of richness than sweetness. The sweet tooth even shows up at cocktail hour. Pernod? No thanks Dubonet? Pass. Mr. and Mrs sweet tooth would like a Jack and Coke and a strawberry daqueri.

Am I the only one that sees a trend here? Is this way too much of a good thing, or am I just full of it?

Chow!!! Lets all pretend the last part of the last question is rhetorical!

Want to stay up to date with this post?

Recommended From Chowhound