Find the unfortunate typo in this Livestrong "nutrition" article

There are three things very wrong in this article at, which my friend Meredith Yayanos pointed me to just now via Twitter. One, "nutrition" and "Velveeta" used in the same sentence at a website associated with cancer prevention and treatment. Two, the message in the yellow band—probably something they want to downplay right now, but no-one has gotten around to updating on the site. And the third is the real kicker, but you'll have to read the copy closely to find it.

The Livestrong dot-com site is basically a content farm populated with Turked-out SEO-bait by Demand Media; the dot-org is where the cancer advocacy organization does its thing.


  1. It’s as if a random sentence from an article about sex got dropped into an article about Velveeta.

    “Hey! You got peanut butter in my chocolate!”

  2. Oh. That’s . . . wow.

    I recently “re found” something that has been in various closets and storage bins since I left home: A sort of specialized tupperware tray for a whole loaf of Velveeta. Like a giant covered butter dish. And I have a special plastic Spam loaf container! I’ve been donating lots of stuff during my current house move, but I’m going to hang onto the Velveeta tub. It would be fun to show up at a party with spam and velveeta. Now all I need is a tupperware container for Ritz crackers.

      1.  Wow . . . there are TWO specialized Velveeta storage container designs!

        The one I have is a rectangular dish with a raised rim, with a boxy rectangular lid with “VELVEETA” stamped in it.

  3. B-b-but it past spell check! What’s the problem? You don’t expect Jane Ireland to notice a missing letter on her own, do you?

    1. Bingo! Beyond the yeast infection joke in the copy—seriously, just start reading it—the Livestrong site is one of the largest & most legit link farm, bot-bait sites I have ever seen.  The advice is worse than Yahoo! Answers or even Lance might not be directly connected to Livestrong anymore, but he’s a vile sociopath & this site is the reflection of a vile sociopath who knows SEO. Horrible on many levels.

      1. Did I miss something, or does cheating at a sport (in the same way that every one of your competitors did) and then lying about it make you a “vile sociopath” now? You’re setting the bar pretty low there.

        1. I don’t really get why anyone gives a shit. Except for anti-drug melodrama. If there had been performance enhancing drugs in ancient Greece, the Olympians wouldn’t have been banned from using them; they would have been forced to use them.

          1.  It is not about using drugs, but rather about repetitively saying that he did not use any drugs and that (by that same logic) anyone can overcome any kind of obstacle.

            Its about selling fake dreams of excellence in human condition and self-improvement. 

          2. Its about selling fake dreams of excellence in human condition and self-improvement.

            That’s pretty much what every company selling every product or service does.

          3. Ok. Try my honesty. I take a lot of drugs. Life is shit without them. I probably owe a lot of what I have managed to do to my dependence on certain drugs. Actually I know I do. Drugs are a great tool when carefully used.

            Feel motivated? Or do you feel like sending me to a treatment center to detox until I tell you what you want to hear about reality.

            Now the whole thing about making people feel like they can just “overcome” cancer… that is pretty shitty IMO.

          4.  People are mad because a.) he kinda had the ‘you can overcome anything with enough effort’ marketing going on, and b.) he pressured other people into using the drugs, even tough they can be rather dangerous.

          5. Bingo! When the reality is if you have the money & power that is the only way you can “overcome” your personal hurdles.

            In this case I would not care one bit except for his cancer struggle. The fact he has hinged his history—and his Livestrong foundation’s history—on the fact that anyone can overcome their cancer by just working hard at it… It’s just sick.  Screw Lance to hell.

          6. Actually the Greeks did have performance enhancing substances such as ox blood and hippuris, and they considered using them in the Olympic games a very serious infraction. Apparently they tested for these “drugs” with urine tasters. At least what the museum at Olympia says.

          7. Personally, I don’t care about the fact thathe took the drugs. The reason that the 2nd place finishers didn’t get the awards that were taken from Armstrong is because he was doping too.

            Armstrong went out of his way however to destroy the reputation of anyone who suggested that he had been doping. He still denies forcing other team members to use the same drugs and performance enhancing techniques, but he probably did that as well. All the while promoting himself as a heroic, cancer-surviving, super-human athlete.

          8. I think the lawsuits he handed out like candy against people who made true accusations puts Lance into a new category for assholes above and beyond someone that just cheated.

        2.  No, but pressuring other people to use potentially-dangerous performance-enhancing drugs kinda does.

  4. I lol’d.

    But honestly, C W is spot on — I certainly hope the money of the foundation goes to worthy efforts, because it’s not going to the development of a useful and informative website.

  5. Eh, Velveeta does have *some* nutritional value. As long as what you want is highly concentrated fat, and a lot of sodium. There’s definitely worse things to eat, like…. High fructose corn syrup straight from the bottle. Or high proof liquor. Or animal tallow.

    It’s not a long list, but Velveeta has its purposes. My younger brother prefers real cheese, but he’s eating it to gain some weight after he lost a lot of weight starting ADHD meds several months ago. He almost completely stopped eating. He was dangerously underweight, and needs to bulk up some, so he’s working out and doing a high calorie diet now. He’s not eating a ton of it, but he’s having mandatory lunch with me now, and likes grilled “cheese”.

  6. The company that owns my ship allows Spam and American cheese to be served aboard here.  Admittedly, that the company has ties to Hawaii might give excuse for the Spam.  However, American cheese is hardly cheese.  Don’t you agree, Gromit? And I suspect that it’s grated Velveeta that’s being secretly put into our omelets. God help us!!!

    1. Depends.  The ‘high-end’ american cheese are basically just colby and cheddar blended together, but I doubt that’s what they’re giving you….

        1. We make (and eat) great cheeses. Sometimes I want a little melty in my grilled cheese, sometimes I want a little laughing cow in my fondue, lesser cheeses have their place!

  7. The rules of SEO demand the use of the word “panties” somewhere. This must have looked like *just* the right place.

  8. Xeni:

    Please show the Nutrition Facts label of Velveeta beside that of your favorite Colby cheese.  Please.  I dare you.


    1. I’m not Xeni but I’ll step up:

      Summary: Colby has 5.7g per 28g serving saturated fat, Velveeta has 4g.  Colby has 169mg sodium vs. 420mg for Velveeta.  Colby has more of just about every vitamin and mineral (except phosphorus), plus omega fatty acids.

      I’ll take the Colby.

      1.  My box says Velveeta has 410mg sodium per oz.

        Note that the only reason I care about Velveeta is that Mom always made toasted cheese sandwiches with it, and people have always laughed when I told them that, but, hey, look at the fat content compared to cheese.  This argument started with my wife. After 20y of marriage, I’m liking her toasted cheese sandwiches, but Mom’s were probably healthier.

      2.  Also, my box says it has 3.5g of satfat, not 4g, but I have the “Daytona 500″ box, so it might be the high performance lowfat version .:-)

      1. That’s true. I use it every day to track what I eat and how much I exercise. Combined with the phone app, it’s a lot more convenient than a notebook or a spreadsheet and it’s been very, very helpful in helping me maintain a healthy weight.

        On the other hand, the articles and advertising are kinda awful.

  9. It’s possible this isn’t a typo.

    Would someone please start producing JuiceStrong wristbands?

    It’s not even February and eBay is talking about Father’s Day?

  10. While I would never touch Velveeta or a Kraft product, I do have a soft spot for good American cheese.  All American Cheese isn’t bad. Boar’s head makes a nice variety that’s not a “cheese food” but real cheese (other than the emulsifiers added as part of the American Cheese process).  Yeah, because it’s classified American Cheese, it’s processed, but not Kraft-singles-plasti-food processed, and nothing like the melted wax goo that is Velveeta.  American cheese starts out as a mild cheddar or colby blend and they add emulsifiers, salt, usually food coloring. The emulsifier makes it melt smoothly and last longer and cut evenly.  I don’t eat it by itself, but it has its place. For grilled cheese sandwiches or cheese toast, nothing beats a good, legally-defined-as-cheese version of  American Cheese.

        1. The first few times that I bought from that cheese group, I’d just ask for that Spanish cheese that smells like zombie fingers.

      1. I like gruyere on sandwiches, and my wife loves it by itself, but not on a classical grilled cheese–ie, bread, butter, cheese–that would be heresy!

        1. At some point I started making my grilled cheese sandwiches with a slice of muenster and a slice of extra sharp cheddar on sourdough.  Good stuff!

          1. Edam. Because it’s exactly the same size and shape as a slice of sourdough, pumpernickel, etc. batard. Also very gooey. Add mustard and pre-cooked asparagus, smear the outside with crushed garlic and fry in butter.

      1.  I’d prefer the inverse.  Big, red letters on “singles” and the like:  This does not meet the legal definition of cheese!

        That “cheese food” and “cheese product” labeling is some bullshit right there.

    1. IIRC it’s loaded with lactose, too.  So much that I can’t eat the stuff.  Oh, I can eat cheese with no ill effects beyond what it does to my cholesterol levels, but anything with Velveeta and I might as well be eating a bowl of flaxseed and Olean.

  11. All right, kids – I’m going to swim against the tide, and offer this:

    My dear, departed mom used to make this dip with Ro-Tel (a canned mix of chile peppers and tomatoes, indigenous to the American South, but available everywhere.)

    I’m not a shill from the vast, interlocking Ro-Tel/Velveeta industrial conglomerate. I was 8 years old, it was really good (it still is), and I loved my mom. So there.

    1. There used to be ads on television for all kinds of nasty things that you could do involving Velveeta and various other condiments.

    2. That rotel/velveeta cheese dip is the bomb! 

      They do make a low-fat version of Velveeta, too.

      Hey, it’s not an everyday food but, you know, SuperBowl Sunday you could rock some cheese dip. In your panties!!!!

  12. I’ve got to step in here and provide another perspective. The livestrong website and it’s calorie tracking database was an invaluable tool in helping me lose over 50 pounds. I’ve tried others but this one was the simplest and most efficent. And if you look past the headline you’ll see that they’re not endorsing Velveeta but they do know how to write an attention grabbing headline. 
    Is it a perfect website? No. But neither is boingboing.

    1. From my perspective, here’s the biggest difference. BoingBoing pays me a living wage and actually demands that I produce quality work that is as accurate as possible. LiveStrong pays writers a couple cents a word and demands they churn out as much material as possible, regardless of accuracy, or where it’s being cribbed from, as long as it’s going to get them hits in a search engine. 

    2. BoingBoing isn’t a quackery-pushing content farm. Any of the information you can find on Livestrong can be found elsewhere else on the internet from a much less shitty source.

  13. “Turked-out SEO-bait” is a perfect summary; in terms of actual health or fitness content, it’s worse even than Men’s Health (which you can trust to be informed on moisturizer, at least.

  14. It seems a bit strange to complain about ‘velveeta’ and ‘nutrition’ being in the same sentence, when the sentence in question is “Velveeta has little nutritional content” i.e. it’s bad for you, don’t eat it. Hello, the author agrees with you.

  15. You laugh, but when I was a kid I tried hoarding a big chunk of Velveeta in my underwear drawer (I lived in a big family, and favorite foods disappeared fast), but didn’t wrap it up. I kind of forgot about it and when I finally found it, it was completely dried out–suitable for use as a brick, and little else. 

  16. Velveeta is American process cheese. That means it’s cheddar cheese in which the protein and nutrient rich whey has been mixed back in. That means it melts smoothly and has less fat and more protein per gram than regular cheese. Look it up.

  17. Don’t get your pantries in a bunch, it says Velveeta is high in calories and fat and should probably be dumped from your diet.

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