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Foodpharmer: The viral crusader against misleading labels

Revant Himatsingka is popularly known as Foodpharmer. With a mission to revolutionise the way Indians perceive packaged foods, Revant's journey from a well-paid finance professional to a social media de-influencer is as compelling as it is inspiring.

Foodpharmer: The viral crusader against misleading labels

Tuesday June 04, 2024 , 3 min Read

In the world of health influencers, one name has been creating significant ripples with his unique blend of humour and hard-hitting truths about the food industry: Revant Himatsingka, popularly known as Foodpharmer. With a mission to revolutionise the way Indians perceive packaged foods, Revant's journey from a high-paying job in finance to becoming a social media de-influencer is as compelling as it is inspiring.

The genesis of Foodpharmer

Revant Himatsingka, hailing from Kolkata, holds an MBA from Wharton and is a certified health coach. His career took a dramatic turn from Wall Street finance to the realm of health education after he realised the profound impact of dietary habits on overall health. His book, Selfienomics, published in 2016, was an early indicator of his interest in health and nutrition, featuring a chapter on the importance of reading food labels​​.

Viral fame and impactful campaigns

Revant's journey as Foodpharmer took off in April 2023 with a viral video exposing the high sugar content in health drinks marketed for children. This revelation led to a significant reduction in the product’s sugar content and garnered widespread media attention. His efforts didn't stop there; he also brought to light the excessive use of palm oil in chips and the misleading health claims of many packaged foods​.

Revant’s approach is data-driven and structured, a skill honed during his stint at McKinsey & Company. He leverages his background in consulting to dissect and expose the false marketing tactics of FMCG giants. His videos, often laced with humour, make complex nutritional information accessible and engaging for his audience​​.

Label Padhega India: A movement for transparency

One of Revant’s most significant contributions is the "Label Padhega India" initiative, aimed at educating the public on the importance of reading food labels. This movement addresses the deceptive marketing practices that often mislead consumers into believing that certain processed foods are healthy. In efforts with other influencers and celebrities, Revant has managed to amplify this message, encouraging a more informed and health-conscious society.

Legal battles and social impact

Despite facing legal challenges, including multiple notices from big corporations, Revant remains undeterred. His determination to promote health literacy and combat false advertising has earned him a dedicated following of over two million on Instagram and hundreds of thousands on YouTube.

Revant’s impact extends beyond social media. His advocacy has influenced regulatory actions, such as the Indian government directing e-commerce platforms to delist misleading health drinks and urging FMCGs to reformulate their products. Institutions like the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) have also supported his initiatives, reinforcing the importance of transparency in food labelling​.

Why Foodpharmer deserves your attention

Revant Himatsingka’s work as Foodpharmer is more than just influencing; it’s a crusade for better health and transparency in the food industry of India. His ability to blend satire with serious health advocacy makes his content not only educational but also highly engaging. As end-consumers, we not only gain insights into healthier eating habits but also become part of a larger movement challenging the status quo of the food industry.

In an era where health is paramount, and misinformation is rampant, Foodpharmer’s voice stands out as a beacon of truth and change. Whether you’re a parent, a health enthusiast, or someone simply looking to make better food choices, paying attention to such influencers' content could be your first step toward a healthier lifestyle.

Edited by Rahul Bansal