We have taken Vani Hari The Food Babe to task multiple times for her charade posing as a credible science-based resource on nutrition, acting in the best interests of her followers, when she really is a metaphor for anti-science hype and fear, according to columnist James S. Fell. He contemplates the question: which has more of a negative impact on society, the Food Babe or food poisoning? Considering that food poisoning (and foodborne illness) results in about 3000 deaths each year, the Food Babe has the potential to wreak far more havoc and harm. She has millions of followers, a book deal, multiple TV appearances and maybe soon, even her own TV show soon. And the anti-science messages she s relaying to her millions of followers have the potential to be extremely harmful to society.
According to the Food Babe, There is just no acceptable level of any chemical to ingest, ever. So Dihydrogen monoxide aka water is going to kill you? So, says Fell, if we all follow her advice, everyone on Earth will be dead in a few days. But it gets worse. She s also anti-vaccine (and anti-GMO).
Let s consider GMOs. Her style of fear mongering has had dire consequences. Fell goes on to point out that in the midst of a famine in 2002 in Zambia, President Levy Mwanawasa rejected food aid from the United States because the corn and soya were genetically modified. He was swayed by the anti-GMO campaign promulgated by the Food Babe. And Golden Rice, which has been genetically engineered to provide beta-carotene, a precursor to vitamin A and which has the potential to save the lives of millions of people, has been kept from those who really need it.
And then there s vaccines. She urges individual to forgo getting the flu shot, falsely asserting that it contains a bunch of toxic chemicals and additives that lead to several types of Cancers and Alzheimer [sic] disease over time. The real concern should be the 200,000 people who are hospitalized with the flu each year and the tens of thousands who die, not the shot which is safe and has the potential to save lives.
Fell concludes: Food Babe is a leader of an army of the misinformed (she actually calls them the Food Babe Army ); she s a high profile member of an anti-science club that seems bound and determined to make people unhealthy and even dead...Food Babe style thinking creates a lot more death and destruction than food poisoning does.
Read his full piece here.