Freedhoff: How I Saved My Kids from Sugar
Increasing consumption of junk food full of sugars negatively influences public health worldwide. Freedhoff’s concerns on this matter are addressed in his article, where he supports the severity of the issue with scientific evidence and his own medical experience. However, it seems fair to claim that Freedhoff’s article is challenging to understand for the ordinary audience not only because of scientific concepts but the lack of coherence and logical sequence of thoughts.
To begin with, the mix of personal experience and scientific evidence may confuse the readers, considering that they might find the stories about Freedhoff’s daughter unreliable compared to researchers’ findings. Furthermore, the attention-getter used in the first paragraph is rather unconvincing and does not state the author’s concerns that will be discussed later in the article. To be more exact, it is evident that to establish the connection with the reader; it is vital to express the topic of the writing from the start so that the audience can decide whether they are interested in this article or not (Varpio, 2018; St. Louis Community College, 2022). Freedhoff, on the contrary, leaves the readers hanging until the next paragraph, waiting for the revelation of the true purpose of his writing. The last sentence of the introduction does not provide anything about the primary idea of the piece whatsoever, “My wife, Stacey, and I … eventually decided to send along our daughter’s favourite chips” (Freedhoff, 2018, para. 1). Overall, the author fails to achieve the logical sequence of the thoughts from the first paragraph, which seriously affects the readers’ perception of the information presented further.
The article’s main body is full of scientific evidence; however, the author makes a significant mistake that, to the advanced reader may be a reason to stop reading Freedhoff’s article further. His arguments clearly express the medical information, which should be taken from a credible source, even though the author himself is a doctor. It is common for healthcare data to be twisted online, which leads to many misunderstandings among readers that define the wrong diagnosis for themselves or start improper treatment. That is why Freedhoff should reference every piece of scientific evidence, either from academic journals or reliable healthcare institutions’ web pages. In addition, Freedhoff provides not general or easily accessible information but exact data and statistics that should be cited within the text to prove that the author did not randomly choose numbers for this argument. For instance, Freedhoff presents the maximum daily sugar intake, “strict limits on added sugars—a daily maximum of between six to twelve added teaspoons for adults” (2018, para. 2). By and large, it is challenging to understand whether the author uses reliable sources for his evidence or if he uses any at all.
Furthermore, it is hard to keep all the ideas mentioned in mind as they are developed randomly throughout the text and not in a row. For instance, Freedhoff starts his article with the story about the camp’s party where his daughter and her friends had to bring junk food. The author then explains that he gave his daughter chips, but the other children probably would bring something sweet, “we assumed the bulk of what she’d be offered there would be sweet” (Freedhoff, 2018, para. 1). Only after five paragraphs does he develop this idea and elaborate on his children’s replies about snacks at the party. Naturally, it is hard to remember every little thought Freedhoff mentions, and, most importantly, it seems irrelevant after the author presents scientific evidence and researchers’ opinions on sugar intake. Overall, it seems fair to claim that the author fails to achieve logical argumentation and a coherent flow of thoughts throughout the article.
It is likely that the author uses examples from his personal experience not only to develop his arguments about the negative impacts of increased sugar intake, but to build an emotional connection with the reader. Unfortunately, most presented stories seem irrelevant to the primary concern of the article, which definitely leaves the readers wondering about the author’s intention of including these experiences. What is more, the drastic changes from personal stories to scientific evidence are likely to leave the audience confused and uncertain about the conclusions of Freedhoff’s piece (Varpio, 2018; Grant, 2019). For instance, closer to the concluding paragraphs, the author starts jumping from topic to topic, mentioning unnecessary information, “I’m still not entirely clear on what a maca ball is” (Freedhoff, 2018, para. 9). Overall, the mix of multiple elements for supporting arguments along with irrelevant personal stories contributes to the author failing to form any emotional connection with the reader.
To sum up, Freedhoff’s choice of the topic is exceptional; however, his underdeveloped arguments and the lack of coherence prevent him from catching the reader’s attention. The article’s structure seems to be overcomplicated, which is likely to confuse the audience about the real purpose of the writing. In addition, the flow of thoughts appears to be due to Freedhoff drastically changing his ideas without fully developing the previously mentioned ones.
Freedhoff, Y. (2018). How I saved my kids from sugar. The Walrus. Web.
Grant, A. J. (2019). Ethos, pathos and logos: Rhetorical fixes for an old problem: Fake news. InSITE Conference. Web.
St. Louis Community College. (2022). Pathos, logos, and ethos. Web.
Varpio, L. (2018). Using rhetorical appeals to credibility, logic, and emotions to increase your persuasiveness. Perspectives on Medical Education, 7(3), 207–210. Web.