And proud of it – despite the fact that my family gives me the hardest time about it.
I hope you’ll consider becoming a label snob too! One of the most important things you can do as you embark on following your “YOU” / Real Food Diet is to start reading food labels. Not on the front with all of the flashy marketing terms:
- “Whole Grains”: don’t get me started… the deception with the marketing of “whole grains” is one of my hot buttons! But that’s another post for another time. 🙂
- “Low Fat”: in case you missed the memo – low fat is no longer recommended and actually contributed to the obesity crisis in our country
- “No Fat”: what they fail to mention on the front is that they replaced all the fat with sugar, which will definitely not help you with your health or weight
- “Made with real fruit juice”: great, but if you look on the back, you’ll find that along with the fruit there’s also high fructose corn syrup and a slew of artificial colors too
- “No High Fructose Corn Syrup“: ok, but it’s probably loaded with regular sugar which is only marginally better than HFCS
Instead, flip the product over and check out the ingredient list and you’ll find the nasty little secrets I shared above hidden behind the marketing terms. On the labels, I’m not as concerned about the macronutrient (carbs-fat-protein) and vitamin/mineral values as I am about the ingredients and the sugar content. My suggestion is to put back on the shelf anything that has:
- Artificial colors
- Artificial flavorings
- Artificial sweeteners
- High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS)
- Monosodium Glutamate (MSG)
- Trans Fats (anything that says “hydrogenated” or “partially hydrogenated”) Another little tidbit: it may say “No Trans Fats” on the front when it actually does – just below the acceptable limit per serving!
- Basically, anything you can’t pronounce or buy as a standalone ingredient in the store. Some examples include: maltodextrin, azodicarbonamide, sodium stearoyl lactate.
Great Carrie. Why?
- For some people, they cause side effects like headaches, nausea, and fatigue (among many other symptoms)
- Because your body doesn’t recognize it as food. It has to work extra hard to process it out of your system, and it’s already burdened with a lot of other toxic substances in our environment (post on that to come!).
- Your body’s goal in eating food is to get the nutrients/fuel it needs to do what it needs to do to keep you running day in and day out. Foods with any of these ingredients are not very nutrient dense and don’t give a lot of bang for the buck. So, you’ll likely end up overeating because you’re not getting the nutrition you need.
So… wanna join me in the Label Snob club?