Movie theater takes stand against sweets

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It’s like taking candy from a baby.

And a few adults and teenagers, too.

Starting May 23, the Gateway Film Center will take all of the theater’s candy off the shelves through May 28. The gesture is a show of support for the documentary Fed Up, which seeks to demystify common misperceptions about the American diet.

“In particular I would say it examines our addiction to sugar,” said Johnny DiLoretto, spokesman for the Gateway Film Center, located in the South Campus Gateway. “And the obesity epidemic everybody talks about is with adults, but there’s an obesity epidemic among children, too.”

Instead of candy, the theater will sell fresh fruit and packets of trail mix from Fit Food. However, candy will be provided to those who really want it.

“We’re just taking it off display,” DiLoretto said. “If somebody really wants it we’ll get it.”

Certainly candy isn’t the only dietary pitfall at movie theaters. What about pop or salty popcorn drenched with butter?

“We can’t shut down the entire operation,” DiLoretto said, adding that theaters make big money on concessions. “This is really what it’s about, it’s just a gesture: ‘Hey, let start thinking about this. Why don’t we?’ We’re looking at this as our first step.”

He said the plan is to offer a wider array of healthier snacks in the future and hopes other movie theaters across the country follow the example.

The Torpedo Room, a restaurant inside the theater complex, also has a number of healthier options for moviegoers, he said.

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