Archive for April 28, 2013

Change The Way You Think About Food and Skinny Cow

skinny cow ice creamDo you need to lose weight or get healthy? Because if you do, you need to make a  big, permanent mental transformation in the way you think about food. If you’ve been viewing food in terms of calories and fat, you’re on the Diet Ferris Wheel: trying to eat low cal, starving, overeating, trying to eat low cal, starving, overeating.  Low calorie diet foods, or low fat meals leave you hungry and unsatisfied.  Those kinds of meals are usually full of easy to digest, processed, refined carbs that get digested and leave your stomach very quickly.  The result: True Hunger.  If you’re eating processed/refined foods, those foods are created and designed to Make You Hungry Again Soon.Do you know what “Bliss Point” is?  It’s a term in Food Science that means a high level of Pleasure Neurons are stimulated, but Satiety is NOT stimulated (satiety comes from particular hormone signals). This isn’t a joke.

Food products are tested over and over with hundreds of subjects submitting to very technical tests to exactly determine what formula induces the highest Bliss Point.  That’s why you can’t get enough soda, crackers, frozen pizza, donuts, granola bars, etc.  These foods were created to stimulate your hunger; not satisfy your hunger.  The Snickers commercials about Snickers satisfying???  Snickers TRIGGERS the desire for more sugar or more food.This leads me to something I get asked about often: should you abstain, or can you eat junk food, or any trigger food, in Moderation?  Answer that question honestly for yourself.  Some people can’t do moderation.  They just get way too overstimulated from certain foods.  Sometimes even the THOUGHT of trigger foods sets off stimulation. (That’s why it’s smart to keep trigger foods OUT OF YOUR HOUSE OR IMMEDIATE WORK ENVIRONMENT.  Those things can call to you!) If that’s you, just be honest with yourself. If you can be truly moderate, as in a bite here or there because you’re being polite, or it’s a special occasion, be moderate.

Here’s some shocking information: Processed, refined food consumption increases every year. 70% of the foods Americans eat is Processed;  Diet Product consumption is up,  American’s total Calorie Consumption is DOWN, American’s weight continues to go UP (70% of all Americans are Overweight). Let’s just use common sense to connect these dots. Here’s a little example of a Processed Diet food, promoted to make you slim: Skinny Cow Milk Chocolate Dreamy Clusters. Skinny Cow junk foods have done an incredible job grabbing some market share as they’ve convinced lots of us that by eating their products, you can lose the pounds but keep the indulgence. Their ingredient list is protected, so I couldn’t copy it, but here’s the breakdown:  11 sources of refined carb/artificial sugar/real sugar = Insulin Up/Fat Storage increased; 3 sources of soy lecithin(allergenic, thyroid disruptor, phyto-estrogen); carrageen (major gut irritant/damager); and caramel color (carcinogen).

Your liver has to break down these chemicals, and it’s not easy.  So let’s add “liver clogger” to the list. (I’m pretty sure that’s a medical term!) Your liver is the majority of your Metabolism.  Clogged Livers = Slow Metabolism.

Does this sound like a good product to use if you want to get healthy or lose weight???  Plan, shop, chop, prep, cook in giant batches; if you want to indulge, at least make sure it’s homemade. Forget about the calories, worry about the ingredients.

Looking for recipes?  Visit these sites:,,,, TheFoodLoversKitchen, The recipe sites are endless- you’ll never need another cookbook again unless you just like cookbooks.And last, as we get to Farmers Market Season, here’s a great website to find Farmers Markets, Co-ops, Cow Shares, and local farmers selling local products near you, visit

Butter Vs Margarine

I want to talk about Fat, which is a subject we’ve been fed a line about for the past 60 or 70 years, with devastating consequences.   Here’s something I think everyone’s heard by now:  (1) partially hydrogenated fats/trans fats are really really bad for you, and (2) the average American eats way too many Omega 6s, and not nearly enough Omega 3’s.

Here’s something you probably haven’t heard though:  saturated fats from animal and tropical fruit sources are GOOD FOR US.  Saturated fats make up at least 50% of every single cell membrane in our body. (saturated fats make a whole bunch of other things in our body too, and I’m not referencing fat cells.)

I’m going to stick to Margarine and Butter today.  Here are the facts.

In the late 1890s, Proctor and Gamble needed an alternative to expensive Lard and Tallow they used to make soap and candles.  By 1907, they’d bought 8 cottonseed plants in Mississippi, and their scientists had learned how to fire cottonseed oil with “hydrogenation”. Unfortunately, right around then, electricity was replacing candles.  What to do with their hydrogenated cottonseed oil?  Well, it looked like Lard, so they decided to sell it as food.  Seriously!
Oh mommy:margarine

In 1911, it was introduced as a healthier, cheaper, and cleaner product than butter or lard.  P&G promoted the white vegetable spread in womens magazines and gave away free cookbooks.  They branded their new product  “Crisco”.

In the 1950s, the Vegetable Oil Industry (by that time it wasn’t just P&G ), spread the word that “animal fats cause heart disease.” Food companies and restaurants quit using coconut oil, butter, and lard, and that is how , waa-laa, Polyunsaturated, Omega 6 loaded, Partially Hydrogenated Trans fats came to be so incredibly prevalent in our food supply.

Here’s how you make Margarine:
“Begin with polyunsaturated, liquid vegetable oil, rancid from extraction under high heat.  About 85% of all hydrogenated oils are from soybeans.  Mix with tiny metal particles, usually nickel oxide.  In a high pressure, high temperature reactor, shoot hydrogen atoms at the unsaturated carbon bonds.  Add soap-like emulsifiers and starch to make it soft and creamy.  Heat/steam away foul odors, bleach away gray color, dye with artificial dyes, and add artificial flavors.”  (Real Whole Food, Nina Planc)
And this ladies and gentlemen, is what we all grew up on.  And many people still eat.  Do not be fooled at Big Foods latest attempts at healthier margarine’s.  They’re still loaded with Omega 6’s and hydrogenated fats (made from Trans Fats).  They stay under the FDA allowance of disclosure for trans fats when mixing the ingredients, but they’re in there.

Here’s a little fact:  heart disease exploded in the 1950s, but by then US consumption of saturated fats had already declined, and the consumption of polyunsaturated vegetable oils was much much higher.   Before WW1, Americans ate 12 grams of trans fats daily, by 1985, it was 40 grams a day.  Today, the average American eats 81 grams of trans fats a day.  OMGOSH.  By the way, you ONLY get that much  by eating  processed and refined foods.  RWF contain almost 0 trans fats.   The average American eats 70% of their diet from processed and refined foods. Processed and Refined foods are LOADED with Trans Fats. (Am I drilling this in enough?). No wonder we’re in such a health crisis.

If you ask the Scientific Experts who study this stuff, which is worse: the Sugar/Carb consumption, or the Hydrogenated Fat consumption, you’ll just get a big argument.  And both have plenty of ammunition for their case, because Sugar and Hydrogenated Oils are both bad.

All margarines, and healthy spreads, are composed of trans-fats.  What happens when we eat them? Well, these fats are ALWAYS chemically unstable, damaged, and oxidized.  Always!  Their chemical structure is wrong for our body. But if that’s what we’re eating, our body USES these damaged fats to make up our Cell Membranes. This is Bad Bad Bad!  Also, some doctors and chemists refer to Trans Fats as Frankenfats, because they can MORPH healthy fats into an unhealthy structure.

So what about butter? It’s been vilified for decades.  Unrightfully so.  It’s actually a health food,cows vs chemists and there’s PLENTY of science behind that statement.  First of all, butterfat helps the body digest protein, and saturated fats help the bones lay down calcium.  Cream contains great amounts of fat soluble vitamins A and D.  You need D to use Calcium and Magnesium.  Butter also has carotenoids and antioxidants.  Find butter from grass-fed cows (KerryGold) and you’ll get Omega 3’s, more A, more D, more carotenoids, and more antioxidants.  You’ll also get CLA – a fatty acid that has enormous Cancer Fighting potential (CLA comes from grass). All butter also has lecithin ( this does too many jobs to even list), anti-inflammatory fatty acids, and medium chain triglycerides – which encourage fat burning.  Butterfat also contains:  manganese, zinc, chromium, copper, selenium, and iodine. Butter also contains Butyric Acid, which has strong anti-fungal properties as well as anti-tumor effects.

How in the heck did this become such a Taboo food all these years?  Big Food, Big Money.

Again, Eat Real Whole Foods.  Pay attention to what you put in your body.  What we eat affects our health, our weight, our mind and our moods.

Fat Bullet Points

Here’s a post on Fat I did during a 30 Day Real Whole Food Challenge.

janet leigh scared of FatHow’s everyone digesting my (possibly) radical information on fat so far?  Maybe you’re kind of bucking and kicking, and backing up.  Thinking, no way is there actually a good fat out there.  Fat is bad.  Fat is evil.  Fat makes me fat and gives me high cholesterol.
Please, if you feel this way, just hold on and keep reading.  Give me a chance to prove that healthy fats are healthy and necessary for your body.

I’ve got a few more days left in Fat Week, but there’s so much information I want to pass along, that today, I’m going to do bullet points.

  • Your brain is composed of 60% fat.  60%!  Almost half that fat is DHA (that’s one of the fish oils).   Imagine what effect the past several decades of low fat/no fat/bad fats have had on our brains.  Researchers are tying depression, anxiety, learning disorders, cognitive disorders, dementia, and Alzheimer’s to our low-fat / no-fat / bad fat diets.
  • Your brain – if it’s healthy – is full of healthy cholesterol (as opposed to oxidized, damaged cholesterol).   Cholesterol is used to build cell membranes, ALL our sex hormones (want your testosterone, men? ), and  Vitamin D;  our liver uses it to make bile (which emulsifies fats), and it’s a huge component of brain and nervous tissues.  Just like low fat,  low cholesterol is tied to depression, anxiety, learning disabilities, and mood disorders. One of the main effects of cholesterol-lowering meds is memory loss.
  • Have I mentioned the amazing research on Coconut Oil and Alzheimer’s?  There’s a lot of information on this, but if you’re interested, google :  Dr. Mary Newport.  She’s literally reversing her husbands Alzheimers disease.  She has a book out called “Alzheimer’s Disease, What if there is a Cure ?”(Amazon),  and she’s all over the net.  You-tubes, podcasts, news shows.   She’s just the tip of the iceberg in this field, but she’s compelling, and a great place to start if you’re interested.
  • Olive oil.  Olive oil’s a super fat, just make sure you’re buying the right kind, and then house it properly.  Olive oil is  a “mono-unsaturate”.  Mono-unsaturate (MUFA)  fats are more stable than PUFAs (poly-unsaturated fatty acids), and less stable than Saturated fats.  That means they can take a little more heat, a little more light, and a little more air than PUFAs before they turn rancid.  This takes me back to my first sentence.  You want to buy “extra virgin, first cold pressed”(EV/FCP),  that means No Heat was used to extract the oil from the olive.  If heat is used, and it is with lesser qualities oils, then you’ve got a damaged fat in the bottle.  (and your body uses damaged fats if you eat them)  If you buy the EV/FCP varieties, make sure you keep them in a dark bottle, or a dark pantry.  You DON’T want your olive oil sitting on the counter.
  • Olive oil is rich in Vitamin E and other powerful antioxidants called polyphenols; both nutrients prevent heart disease and cancer. ( If you buy heat-extracted oil, the vitamin E and polyphenols are destroyed.)   Olive oil also inhibits blood platelet stickiness, lowers blood pressure, and reduces inflammation.    Monounsaturated fats lower LDL cholesterol.  Studies show that the polyphenols also provide protection against colon, skin, and breast cancer, heart disease, and aging.
  • Don’t buy “light” olive oil.  That’s a joke.  It’s a marketing gimmick to make you think it has fewer calories.  Really, it’s just been refined to remove color, scent, and flavor, and in doing so, the vitamins and antioxidants are removed also.  Then, it’s no longer a health food.
  • Flaxseed oil and walnut oil are polyunsaturates, loaded with Omega 3s.    As such, they should NEVER be heated, or exposed to light.  Both should actually be stored in your refrigerator, not the pantry.  They’re very good in salad dressings, pestos, and mayonaise.
  • And one more bullet point:  if you cook vegetables for your kids, and top them off with delicious butter or olive oil, S&P, and maybe some grated hard cheese, they’ll probably eat them, and like them.  We’ve got a couple generations growing up with either steamed plain jane vegetables, or no vegetables at all.  God made fat for vegetables!! Not only does it make them taste great, but the fat allows all the Fat Soluble Vitamins and all the minerals to be absorbed and used. We want those nutrients!

Habit Eating & Looks Healthy But Isn’t (LHBI)

LHBI – Looks Healthy But Isn’t!  I just made that up!
Food is a tricky thing.  You can have all the knowledge in the world, all the desire to eat healthy and feel good, maybe even have serious dis-satisfaction with your body, your energy levels, or your health, and still find it difficult to maintain positive eating habits.  That’s because “old habits die hard”.  Seriously.  Think about your worst food habits, there’s always a pattern:

  • binging after dinner
  • munching on snacks at the office
  • starving in the middle of the afternoon
  • eating off your kids plates
  • evening wine and crackers
  • too many beers after work
  • scheduled stops Starbucks/Panera/anywhere you can buy a snack and drink

There’s not a lot of original, different “bad habits”.   I’ve been surveying this in nutrition groups I’ve led and when I ask “what’s your worst eating habit”, its just a small handful of answers over and over. And that’s a good thing, because identifying your bad habits is the first step to changing them. I’m going to do a group in May on habits and eating patterns.

For now, realize that you really really do have control over what you put in your mouth.  Make a plan, shop, schedule your cooking/prepping/packing time just like you schedule everything else.  Don’t even allow the thought that you’re too busy enter your mind.  Everyone has the same amount of time.  The busiest people tend to get the most things done because they live by their lists.  Make your health a priority.   You really do have control over what you put in your mouth, you just have to exercise that control.  That said, here’s another “looks healthy but isn’t” break down.

I LOVE Seaweed Salad, and I was so excited when I first saw it at Wegmans.  What sounds more healthy than Seaweed?   (If you want to improve THYROID function, you should incorporate kelp/seaweed into your diet), but then I took a look at the ingredient list, along with seaweed: sugar,  disodium inosinate,  disodium guanylate, yellow #5, and blue#1.  5 ingredients with serious side effects.  Disodium inosinate and Disodium guanylate both often contain MSG, but even without MSG, they have this side-effect list:  headaches and migraines, seaweed saladweakness, sweating, nausea, and flushing.  We went over blue #1, the other day, but here’s the info on yellow #5:  banned in Austria, Norway, and much of Europe;  side effects are allergies, skin reactions, asthma attacks, broncho-constriction, blurred vision, migraines, anxiety, and cancer.

If you’ve been following along for the past month, and have had the opportunity to read the side effects of food additives in common, healthy seeming, convenient, processed, foods,  are you making the connection between these side effects and your health, weight, and mood, or your child’s health, weight, and mood?    Anyone on medication for headaches, migraines, nausea, anxiety?…..What if you just changed your foods. These side effects are very, very real. These additives cause serious damage to our bodies and our minds.

Cook and eat Real Whole Foods.  Know what you’re putting in your body because you build your health, or tear down your health, with each meal.

Question about Butter..

Debbie – I don’t know if you have time to answer emails, as you probably get a ton of questions.  Right now I am using Smart Balance Light Butter & Canola Oil Blend (spreadable).  Fat content:

Total – 5g

Saturated – 2gbutter mad at margarine

Trans – 0

Polyunsaturated – 1g

Monounsaturated – 2.5g

Ingredients (in order) are water, butter, canola oil, 2% buttermilk powder, fish oil, plant sterols, salt, lactic acid, distilled monoglycerides, natural flavor, pectin, PGPR, potassium sorbate, vitamin A palmitate, beta carotene color

I am wondering if this is a good choice for me (it contains polyunsaturated fat).  I have  high cholesterol.

It looks good because the fat content is low ( and we’ve been led to believe that important);  also, the Canola Oil Lobby has done an incredible job promoting their product as healthy.  I don’t think it is and here’s why:   Canola Oil is an Omega 6 oil, that means it’s “poly-unsaturated”.  Our body needs PUFAs (polyunsaturated fatty acids), that’s what Omega 3s are.  But of all the oils, their chemical structure is the most UNSTABLE.  This matters.  Unstable fats are 100% prone to damage in the presence of heat and light and oxygen (unlike Saturated fat, which is HIGHLY stable).  The body will use damaged fats to build cell walls and cell membranes if we eat them.  Imagine building a brick building with rocks from the drive way and trying to make it work.  Is that a good picture?

The ONLY way to “expel” the oil from the seed of the canola (actually the plant is called RapeSeed,  they call the oil Canola to make it sound more pleasant), is ….thru heat. Period.  So when it gets to the bottle, it’s already damaged.  If you’re cooking with it, you’re damaging it even more.
But let’s look at the rest of the ingredients in the artificial butter-like spread product.

Buttermilk powder:  When you see this, or skim milk powder, which legally does NOT have to be identified when added to milk products,  know that it’s Oxidized.  Oxidized Fats are super, super bad for us.  They damage artery walls.  Talk about skyrocketing LDL levels.
Distilled Monoglycerides:  This is fascinating.  Mono and Di-glycerides are Hydrogenated Palm Oil.  As in , it’s a Hydrogenated Fat. (bad bad bad).  But when the chemists who discovered how to do it went for their patent, they applied for it as an EMULSIFIER, not as a Hydrogenated Fat.  So when you see mono and diglycerides on the ingredient label, they do NOT have to be included in the fat identification.  Ugh.  Thank you FDA.
Natural Flavor:  Read MSG and a TON of chemicals  (how else do you make butter flavor out of thin air?)
PGPR:  An emulsifier from castor beans usually used to make cheaper chocolates thin and viscous.  Moussalini force fed this to prisoners to give them dirrehea and stomach problems to make them talk.  I guess food scientists are just always keeping their ear to the ground for inventive ways to use neat products.
Potassium Sorbate:  This has a GRAS (generally recognized as safe) status, because the FDA says we would only see side effects (nausea and migraines) with long term use.  hmmmm.   What the heck do they consider “long term use”?

Go back and look at the ingredient list for Butter, (that’s a trick question, as it just real butter just contains cream).   Compare that to this “healthy, low fat, butter substitute”.

And finally, to partially address the “I have high cholesterol” and since this contains PUFAs, it must be good, right?
Read this:  There is NO Good Scientific Link Between Healthy Saturated Fats and High Cholesterol.    Cholesterol is going to be another email unto it’s self, so I’ll just point you in a couple of directions if you’re really interested:  go on, and  and put cholesterol into their search bar.  Look at the research instead of listening to marketing via pharmaceutical makers.

Back to this product and cholesterol.  There’s damaged, oxidized buttermilk that raises cholesterol, there’s damaged PUFAs that raise cholesterol, and there’s chemicals that go thru the body and cause damage, and that raises cholesterol.
Cholesterol is used by the body as a healing substance.  Seriously.  God did not make a giant mistake when He designed our bodies so that almost EVERY SINGLE CELL we have produces cholesterol.  And the liver produces tons.  Where there is INFLAMMATION, from Insulin, from Sugar, from Chemicals, and from Damaged Fats, the liver sends CHOLESTEROL to patch or fix it.  ……  Reread that last paragraph.

You want lower cholesterol?  Quit eating sugar and processed carbs, quit eating chemicals, and quit eating bad fats.
Want to lose weight?  Quit eating sugar and processed carbs, quit eating chemicals, and quit eating bad fats.
Want to get healthy?  Quit eating sugar and processed carbs, quit eating chemicals, and quit eating bad fats.
Eat Real Whole Foods.


Here’s a post from my 30 Day Real Whole Food Challenge

How is the Real Whole Food effort going?  Remember, this is about Awareness and Effort, not Perfection.  No one changes habits overnight.  Resolve to Evolve.  Continue to pay more attention to what’s in the food you feed your body, and continue to learn about and solidify the fact that the food you eat either makes you more healthy, or less healthy.   We are literally what we eat.

Keeping with the “Fat Week” theme (kind of like Shark Week), today’s RWF is Coconut – as you can tell by my menus, it’s a favorite of mine. Coconut meat, coconut oil, and **** coconut butter**** !  Not only is coconut delicious, but it’s a SuperFood.  It’s fallen out of favor in the U.S. for the same reason animal fats have:  saturated fats are bad for you (blah blah blah, Not True), and Omega 6/hydrogenated/trans fats are good for you (again, Not True).  Before the mid 20th century, coconut oil and palm oil were common fats in baked goods.  Then Crisco and it’s ilk invaded and dominated the market; they’re cheaper, they’re incredibly shelf stable (like, forever), and those oils have an tremendous amount of marketing and money behind them.

The fact is,  Partially Hydrogenated/Hydrogenated/Trans Fats, which come from Omega 6 laden Vegetable Oils, are Killers.  Disastrous for you, for your kids, for your family.

coconut_tree_becomes_coconut_oil_eventuallyBack to Coconut.  Coconut flesh contains fiber, protein, good fats, Vitamins B, C, and E, and calcium, magnesium, iron, zinc, and potassium.  It’s solid at room temp, but softens or melts at about 76*.  The oil is 64% Medium Chain Fatty Acids (you’ll see MCT oil on labels), that have amazing properties.  The main fat is Lauric Acid, which is antimicrobial, antifungal, and antiviral.  (Breast Milk is LOADED with Lauric Acid, butter has a little, those are the only sources.)  Lauric Acid kills “fat coated viruses”, like HIV, measles, herpes, influenza, leukemia, hepatitis C, epstein-barr, and bacteria like Listeria, H-Pylori, and strep.

MCTs are metabolized differently than other fats:  they don’t get emulsified by bile, which means they are used for energy very easily (read – burned).  BTW, this makes them GREAT for people who’ve had their GallBladders removed. Lauric Acid has the same effect on metabolism that protein does; as in, it raises it. Several studies indicate that coconut oil raises body temperature and causes weight loss, and that it actually improves thyroid function.

Because coconut oil is saturated, that means it’s very stable (unlike polyunsaturated vegetable oils, which are very unstable).  You can heat it with no damage to the fat molecules.  This is important.  Damaged fats, like the kind in the fry oil at restaurants, or in processed foods,  get used by our cells INCORRECTLY.  This means the nutrients getting into the cell, and the wastes coming out of the cell are impeded; interfered with; stymied; blocked; stonewalled. (  You get the picture.  Bad fats are bad news.  Our body’s 3rd component is FAT.  When healthy fats are used as building blocks, all is good.  The body runs like it’s supposed to.  When damaged fats are used, all is NOT good.  I’m simplifying something that’s actually a really, really, big deal.

What about coconut oil and cholesterol? (I can’t WAIT to talk about cholesterol)  Study after study after study shows that coconut oil IMPROVES cholesterol ratios, because it raises HDL and lowers LDL.    FYI, Palmitic acid, a fatty acid in Palm Oil, has the exact same effect.

Here’s another positive about healthy saturated fats like butter and coconut oil:  your body needs saturated fats to effectively retain and use Essential Fatty Acids (you know, fish oils like EPA and DHA). Americans don’t get enough EFAs, so we need to be prudent with what we do get.  It would be a shame to waste any.

Coconut oil comes in a couple of different grades. The best is “unrefined or virgin”, which means it was cold pressed and wet milled.  The next best is “expeller-pressed or refined”, which is gently deodorized to remove scent and flavor (great for hair and skin). I use coconut oil to sauté chicken and fish and cook eggs in, and it’s great in desserts.  Canned coconut milk is perfect for making ice cream and puddings and soups, and good flaked or shredded coconut is delicious in salads and smoothies (make sure it’s UNSWEETENED).

Coconut oil has no meat in it;  the oil is pressed out of the meat. Coconut butter is throwing the meat into a giant food processor, and processing. The meat and oil are blended together to make the butter.  It’s not really the same texture as “butter”, but a little more firm.  It’s heavenly. Safeway is now selling Artisana Raw coconut butter, and so is IGA (for the locals).  You’ll have to check your stores to figure out what’s available to you.  Everyone is selling unrefined coconut oil now.  Unsweetened coconut flakes/shreds are a little harder to find. Wegmans carries a few brands, one is Bobs Mill.

Tropical traditions is a great site to order coconut products from, so is Nutiva.  There’s a great new site that sells amazing coconut butters, that I can’t wait to try out, her butters sound like dessert:)

What We Eat Always Matters

I can’t repeat enough, your body, your mind, your moods, your weight, and your health, are determined by the foods you eat.  Your lifestyle and your HABITS make who you are.  If you think that eating well, or minimally, for 3 or 4 days, or a week, should fix your issues, and it doesn’t, think again!  We are the product of a LIFETIME of our habits.  Eat well all the time.  Sleep, pray, exercise, spend time with people you love.

Health is everything.  When you lose it, or it’s compromised, it’s a game changer.
Cooking, preparing food, giving attention to meals, these are such important components of a healthy life, and yet they’ve been so downgraded for the last 20 or 30 years.    We can NOT get real sustenance from processed, refined (and most restaurant) foods.  The chemicals in these foods, the way they’re made, cause disease, rob us of energy and vitality, and make us fat and depressed.

If you have children, and you’re feeding them processed, refined foods,  you’re training them, you’re actually developing and passing on dietary and lifestyle habits that last a lifetime.  Conversely, teach them how to cook, be an example – show them how to eat – and you’re developing and passing on those dietary and lifestyle habits.
And that leads me to answer a question / comment I’ve had 100x.  “my husband, my kids, my wife..  just won’t jump on board.”

You can’t beat anyone into submission.  Be an example.  Be a leader, but don’t be a dictator.  Especially with teenagers and spouses.  If you’re the main grocery shopper in your house, you have a lot of control over what goes in your pantry.  You can decide to buy or not to buy boxes and bags of mindless munchie foods, addictive sweets, or pretend meal foods (tostinos pizza rolls!).     You determine what goes on the dinner table.  You can influence what they eat at lunch ( who knows what happens at school ) , you can cook breakfast for them.     Lead by example.  Let your kids or spouse see you eating tons of vegetables, meats, healthy fats, some fruits, some nuts and seeds, some legumes and some dairy.  Don’t snack on processed foods.  Start saying they can hold off til dinner.

Don’t try and create drastic changes in your home, just work on evolving

LHBI Chicken, and Healthy Chicken

****<strong>The average American’s diet consists of 70% processed food. ******  70% of all American’s are overweight.  Hmmm.

Let’s do a LHBI (looks healthy but isn’t) Chicken:)
Perdue Chicken Breast Meat Nuggets:  
Chicken Boneless Breast Meat With Rib Meat
WaterPotassium LactateSodium LactateSalt,Sodium PhosphateSodium DiacetateFlavoringBreading :Wheat Flour BleachedWater,Wheat Flour Bleached Enriched (Enriched With NiacinIron ReducedThiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1)Riboflavin (Vitamin B2)Folic Acid (Vitamin aB)) , Corn Flour YellowCorn Meal YellowDextroseWhey DriedSaltSugarYeastLeavening (Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate,Sodium Bicarbonate) , Potassium SorbateSpice(s)Soybean(s) OilCalcium PropionateGuar GumFlavoringPaprika Extractives color(s)Spice(s) Extractive

Note the sugar sources in the breading, and the chemicals up top, right after chicken meat. funny-chicken-cook-me-like-one-of-your-french-fries-540x434  Here’s a little info on them:  Sodium Phosphate has laxative properties, and is the main ingredient in several enemas, including Fleet brand.  Sodium Diacetate, which gives “a distinct vinegar flavor”  is listed as contraindicated for pregnant women, possibly causing renal issues (kidney) and fluid retention.  Also note the “Flavoring” ingredient, because that means MSG.  Here’s a product we feed to our children, and it can cause headaches and behavior issues (MSG) and kidney/fluid issues.

Here’s the Panera Chicken Salad sandwich on Artisian Sesame Semolina (sounds fancy) :Sesame Semolina Bread (Flour Enriched Durum andSemolina Flour [Wheat FlourNiacinIron,Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1)Folic Acid (Vitamin aB)] , WaterFlour Unbleached [Wheat FlourBarley Malted Flour] , Sesame Seed(s)Salt) , Chicken Salad (Chicken [WaterFood Starch ModifiedSaltChicken FatFlavor(s) Chicken] , DextroseCorn StarchFlavor(s),Sodium PhosphateMayonnaise [WaterSoybean(s) OilVinegarFood Starch ModifiedEgg(s) YolksEgg(s) WholeCorn SyrupSpice(s)SaltCalcium Disodium EDTAPotassium Sorbate PreservativeSodium BenzoateXanthan GumPropylene Glycol Alginate] , CeleryLemon(s) JuiceOnion(s) PowderGarlic PowderParsleyPepper(s) White) , Tomato(es)Onion(s),LettuceMayonnaise (Soybean(s) OilCanola OilEgg(s) YolksVinegarCorn SyrupWater,SaltSpice(s)Calcium Disodium EDTA To Protect Flavor) , MustardAlfalfa SproutsSalt,Pepper(s)

We’re covered a lot of these chemicals, but with over 3,000 chemicals approved for our food supply, we haven’t even scratched the surface.  Here’s some info.   Propylene Glycol Alginate, which is approved for both food and several industrial uses, like automotive anti-freeze and runway de-icer, can have harmful effects “on fetus of any age”, and is contraindicated for people on liver and kidney medications.    It’s also used as the:  “killing and preserving agent in pitfall traps, usually used to capture ground beetles” [10].
Add this to multiple sources of sugar, MSG,  and  Calcium Disodium EDTA (remember that one?).  There’s also Sodium Benzoate (allergic reactions, hives, asthma), and I have to point out that the actual chicken is literally flavored with “..Flavors, Chicken”.  Huh??  Chicken flavor – which is a chemical concoction that tastes like chicken, is added to the chicken.

Here’s the ingredients in Chick Fil A Classic Chicken Sandwich: Chicken (100% natural whole breast filet, seasoning [salt, monosodium glutamate, sugar, spices, paprika], seasoned coater [enriched bleached flour {bleached wheat flour, malted barley flour, niacin, iron, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid}, sugar, salt, monosodium glutamate, nonfat milk, leavening {baking soda, sodium aluminum phosphate, monocalcium phosphate}, spice, soybean oil, color {paprika}], milk wash [water, whole powdered egg and nonfat milk solids], peanut oil [fully refined peanut oil with TBHQ and citric acid added to preserve freshness and dimethylpolysiloxane an anti-foaming agent added]), bun (enriched flour [wheat flour, malted barley flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamin mononitrate {Vitamin B1}, riboflavin {Vitamin B2}, folic acid], water, high fructose corn syrup, yeast, contains 2% or less of each of the following: liquid yeast, soybean oil, nonfat milk, salt, wheat gluten, soy flour, dough conditioners [may contain one or more of the following: mono- and diglycerides, calcium and sodium stearoyl lactylates, calcium peroxide], soy flour, amylase, yeast nutrients [monocalcium phosphate, calcium sulfate, ammonium sulfate], calcium propionate added to retard spoilage, soy lecithin, cornstarch, butter oil [soybean oil, palm kernel oil, soy lecithin, natural and artificial flavor, TBHQ and citric acid added as preservatives, and artificial color]), pickle (cucumbers, water, vinegar, salt, lactic acid, calcium chloride, alum, sodium benzoate and potassium sorbate [preservatives], natural flavors, polysorbate 80, yellow 5, blue 1).

Wow, I hesitated even printing that entire list.  I’m afraid I’ll lose you.  Be assured that this list is very similar to every other fast food list.

What about rotisserie chickens, from the grocery store?  They look real, and you can see them actually turning in the Rotisserie ovens.  Here’s the Costco facts.
Ingredients: whole chicken, water, salt, sodium phosphates, modified food starch, sugar, carrageenan, soy lecithin, flavorings, xanthan gum.
Again, this was very similar to every other grocery store list I looked at.  Apparently, they’re injected with solution before they leave the chicken processing factory.

How bout this:  buy and cook your own chicken!  It’s delicious and nutritious, an excellent source of protein, and even a great source of fatty acids.  Chicken fat is mostly Monounsaturated, and composed of Palmitic Acid, which is highly anti-microbial.  That’s what gives chicken soup actual healing properties.  Buy and cook “bone-in”, and you’ll have minerals, glucosamine, msm, collagen, and more goodies leach into the meat.    And cooking chicken is simple!  Just roast in the oven, with S&P, or boil in water and shred.

What you eat affects your health, your mood, and your weight.  What you feed your kids affects their health, their mood and their weight.  Choose RWFs.

LHBI Salad Dressings


How’s the journey to health, wellness, and Real Whole Food?  Remember, it’s Awareness not Perfection that we’re aiming for here.  No getting discouraged over self-inflicted negative thoughts.  Changing habits is NOT easy, it takes a while; but it’s completely do-able.

Today’s LHBI food is Salad Dressings.  Have you looked at those ingredient lists??? Gross!  So gordon ramsey salad yellingwhat do we put on all our delicious salads?  And why do we need to put anything on a salad at all? Because we want the Nutrients from the foods.    Several nutrients, like vitamin A, D, E, and K, and all the minerals (calcium, magnesium, etc), only get absorbed IN THE PRESENCE OF FAT.    Protein is better absorbed in the presence of fat.  Fat isn’t just an energy source.  Fat has hundreds of functions in our body. ( Remember that water is our bodies biggest component, and then protein and fat are the next 2 biggest components, then minerals, vitamins, and carbohydrates,which make up about 2% of us).



Whether you go Full Fat, Low Fat, or Fat Free, commercial salad dressings are a health disaster.   What to do ?  Make your own!  You could always use a good Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Vinegar.  Have you seen the new fruit vinegars in the stores now?  Delicious!  Or you could make one of a million great dressing recipes out there.

I looked at ingredient lists of several different salad dressings.  Calcium Disodium EDTA was in almost every one.  It’s used as a preservative in food,  and a chelator in medicine.  Chelation means “removes metals” – and MINERALS.  So, when this is added to our SALADS ( a very nutrient dense group of foods) , it leaches on to minerals and causes them to be expelled.   The FDA also says it causes malabsorption of Vit C and several B vitamins.  When it’s used in Chelation Therapy, the FDA requires Vitamin Infusions .  Hmmm. Other side effects include allergic reactions; dangerously low blood sugar, blood pressure, or blood calcium levels; kidney failure and seizures. According to the FDA, 11 patients died from calcium disodium EDTA use between 1971 and 2007.

Oh, and here’s something interesting:
Calcium disodium EDTA should not be given with ceftriaxone, also known as Rocephin, according to Ceftriaxone is a cephalosporin antibiotic used to treat bacterial infections. When combined, ceftriaxone reacts with calcium disodium EDTA to produce calcium crystals in the lungs and kidneys, which can be life threatening. The calcium disodium EDTA may also result in the body absorbing more ceftriaxone than it should, which reduces the efficacy of the antibiotic in destroying bacteria.

OMGosh.  Why is this stuff allowed in our food?   Read your labels!  Know what you’re putting in your body!  Here again we’re seeing side effects that are common symptoms that people go to the doctor for.  What if you need to change your food as opposed to taking pharmacuticals?

What to use instead of commercial salad dressings? A good oil and vinegar are the quickest go-to, but if you want something else, Ranch, French, Buttermilk,  make your own! They’re easy and they’re quick. Good place to start: google , salad dressings.  Great Recipes!

What is BHA and BHT?

Today’s scoop is ammo on two ubiquitous additives to processed and refined foods:  BHA and BHT.  Don’t even worry about what those letters stand for, you’ll never see them on a package because it’s too long.  But you will see BHA and BHT on lots and lots of common food products, makeup, and skin care.
BHA and BHT are synthetic preservatives that keep fat from going rancid.  Look on cereals, breads, meats, microwave dinners, vegetables oils, margarine’s  chewing gum, any and all chips, cookies, cakes, skin lotions, face make-up,… the list is endless. Literally.  If you buy and consume processed, refined foods (and lots of restaurants use processed refined foods), you’re consuming these chemicals.cartoon of two scientists in lab
What’s so bad about them?  Well, the FDA reviewed them in the 1970s and gave then a “GRAS (generally recognized as safe) status, but acknowledged additional review was needed.  In 1986, they reviewed and just repeated that dictum.  No further review – by the FDA – has happened.
However, the Department of Health and Human Services, the Agency for Cancer Research, and The National Toxicology Program, have all declared BHA and BHT as Carcinogenic.  There’s very strong links between these products and hyperactivity in children, it’s highly suspected they cause liver damage, and it takes the average male adult TEN days to eliminate BHA from the system.
I could seriously go on and on reporting scary, negative findings on these preservatives.  But I don’t need to, right?
Here’s the take-away:  it doesn’t matter how innocent the packaging looks, or if there’s an “AHA APPROVED” stamp on it, or if it contains trigger words like “Low Fat!”;   processed, refined foods are not good for you, and cause both immediate and long term damage.
Moms, scary cancer info aside, BHA and BHT absolutely cause hyperactivity.   Why would you feed that to your children?  It’s already hard enough for a kid to sit still.
Oh the other hand, RWFs like meats, healthy fats, vegetables, fruits, beans, nuts, SINGLE INGREDIENT foods, are loaded with nutrients that fight disease and degeneration and encourage healthy cell turnover.  You want that healthy cell turnover.
***************About 60% of your daily metabolism /your daily calorie burn, happens in the LIVER!!   Not the muscles.  The next biggest user of calories are your heart and brain combined.  THEN your muscles.  If your liver – which has hundreds of jobs to do every day, is busy breaking down and trying to deal with additives, preservatives, colors, scents, dyes, etc etc, then it’s not doing it’s real jobs.  If your organs are being compromised by additives, preservatives, and other chemicals, they’re not doing their jobs.  Not only is your HEALTH very adversely affected, but your WEIGHT suffers because your METABOLISM is compromised. *******************
I don’t know which is your bigger motivating factor, health or weight.
I want you to see how INTIMITATELY tied together those things are.  Our health and our weight and our moods are all completely a result of the foods we eat day in and day out.

Check your food labels – it matters!