Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Guilt-free Hot Chocolate:
-1 scoop Amazing Grass Chocolate Super food Powder
-1-2T Cocoa powder (depending on your taste)
-1/4 tsp Vanilla extract
-3/4 cup milk of choice (I use unsweetened vanilla hemp milk)
-Stevia to taste
Not only is this sugar-free (if sweetened with stevia) and low-calorie, but it has super foods in it as well! Drink up!
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
I loved reading your comments on my angry shopper post. I see that you all are just as outraged over poor food labeling regulations as I am! Now onto another topic that angers me: GMOs.
GMOs (genetically modified organisms) are crops which have been inserted with genetically modified genes from other plants, viruses, bacteria, animals, etc. This is done to make the crops more stable and resistant to drought, disease and pesticides.
According to the US Department of Agriculture, 93 % of all soybeans, 78% of all cotton, and 70% of all corn grown in the US in 2010 were genetically modified to be herbicide intolerant. The fact that GM foods are not labeled leads to many shoppers consuming them unknowingly.
How to avoid GMOs:
1. Buy organic
Certified organic products cannot intentionally include any GMO ingredients. Look for labels that say “100% organic.”
2. Look for products with a Non-GMO Project seal. Products that carry this seal are independently verified to be in compliance with North America’s only third party standard for GMO avoidance, including testing of at-risk ingredients.
3. Avoid the top GM food crops and products that contain them if they are not labeled organic or non-GMO. The four major GM crops are Corn, Soybeans, Cotton and Canola, so try to buy them only organic.
Also, beware of dairy products which may be from cows injected with GM bovine growth hormone. Look for dairy products labeled “No rBGH or rBST” or “artificial hormone-free.”
Vote against GM foods, by choosing to buy the major 4 GM crops only organic or look for foods specifically labeled "non-GMO."
Wednesday, March 2, 2011
I did some food shopping yesterday and while passing through the cereal aisle I couldn't help but notice the large check and rather ridiculous claims on many of the General Mills cereals.
General Mills has dubbed many of their cereals as "Whole Grain Guaranteed" with a large check on the box. Are they lying? No. The first ingredient is Whole Grain Oats, but unfortunately that is the only healthy ingredient. Take Lucky Charms for example,
Ingredients: Whole Grain Oats, Marshmallows (Sugar, Modified Corn Starch, Corn Syrup, Dextrose, Gelatin, Calcium Carbonate, Yellows 5&6, Blue 1, Red 40, Artificial Flavor), Sugar, Oat Flour, Corn Syrup, Corn Starch, Salt, Trisodium Phosphate, Color Added, Natural and Artificial Flavor. Vitamin E (Mixed Tocopherols) Added to Preserve Freshness. Vitamins and Minerals: Calcium Carbonate, Zinc and Iron (Mineral Nutrients), Vitamin C (Sodium Ascorbate), a B Vitamin (Niacinamide), Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine Hydrochloride), Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), Vitamin B1 (Thiamin Mononitrate), Vitamin A (Palmitate), a B Vitamin (Folic Acid), Vitamin B12, Vitamin D3.
Gag-worthy. Well at least they add vitamins right? (sarcasm). They definitely make sure to promote that on the box as well by stating that Lucky Charms are a "good source of Calcium and Vitamin D!"
Side Note: Did you know that Cascadian Farms, Muir Glen (two organic brands) and Lara bar are owned by General Mills?
So I continued with my shopping. I was looking for a jar of tomato sauce and the go-to brand I usually buy was all out. When looking for tomato sauce I always look for one that contains no added sugar, this is a harder task than one would think. I saw a brand called Organicville. On the label it stated Gluten free, Organic and no added Sugar.
INGREDIENTS: ORGANIC TOMATO PUREE, ORGANIC TOMATOES, ORGANIC BASIL, SALT, ORGANIC ONIONS, ORGANIC EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL, ORGANIC AGAVE NECTAR, ORGANIC GARLIC AND ORGANIC OREGANO.
Come again? I thought you said no added sugar? Oh, you meant no white sugar, or even raw sugar, but no one said anything about agave!
Yes, agave is a natural sugar and may be considered to be a better alternative to white sugar. It is a low glycemic sweetener so it doesn’t send your blood sugar such a roller coaster the way other sugars do. But, lets get real here, sugar is sugar and there happens to be a lot of controversy surrounding Agave.
This article by Mark Bittman says it all. McDonald's newest menu item, their wholesome whole grain oatmeal, which is really just oats plus heavy cream and tons of sugar, “contains more sugar than a Snickers bar and only 10 fewer calories than a McDonald’s cheeseburger or Egg McMuffin.” Disgusting? Yes. Surprising, not really. I mean have you seen how a chicken nugget is made?:
As Bittman said, “there are barely any rules governing promotion of foods,” so it is up to each of us to be nutritional detectives because quite frankly, our health depends on it.
Have a blog? Want to win a $100? Check out the Swanson Health Blog.
Tuesday, March 1, 2011
We are getting closer and closer to spring and summer! At the fresh start of every month I like to set some goals and intentions for that month.
This month I plan to do some Spring Cleaning. In the same way you clean and maintain your home, you must take care of your body, mind and spirit. I will be doing a separate post all about my spring cleanse and what it entails.
For me cleansing and detoxing doesn't have to be as extreme as some make it out to be. In addition, I like spend time "cleansing" my mind as well. Getting rid of negative thoughts is such an important part of good health. The winter tends to make us shut off and become more introverted, but spring is all about opening up, and letting your energy out as well and being open to new energy coming in.
I also want to try some new recipes. Not only do you all have me drooling from pictures of your delicious creations, but I also recently got the cookbook, Appetite for Reduction, which is filled with low fat vegan recipes. I am excited to get in the kitchen and try some of these recipes out!
Your goals and intentions don't have to simply be a list, they can also be in the form of a mantra or statement, like so:
I plan to go through March with an open mind and an open heart. I will let go of any negative energy or thoughts because they no longer serve me. Throughout the month I will stay in a positive mind set, which will attract amazing people and opportunities into my life.
Form your own personal statement and repeat it throughout the month. By doing so your are reaffirming your intentions and keeping your mind focused.