Wednesday, August 4, 2010

If Ya Can't Read it, Don't Eat it!

Like many others, I used to be one of those people who immediately went to the back on the box, wrapper, bag, etc. to check calories and fat content. If it wasn’t in the ultra low calorie range, I’d chuck it back like a little kid grossed out by broccoli. Now that I’m a little older and a little wiser about what healthy actually is, I still go straight to the back of the package…but for something else: ingredients.

Yes, many “healthy” eaters are unaware of the importance of knowing exactly what you’re putting in your mouth. Forget calories, fat, sugar, and sodium for a second and take a good, hard look at the actual substance. For instance, many people would think that fat free flavored rice chips would be a semi-healthy choice, but when you read the ingredients on some of these “diet-friendly” choices it’s absolutely frightening. In fact, more often than not these diet foods have more than 20 ingredients, half of which you can’t even pronounce. If you wouldn’t dare try a diet you’ve never heard of before or date a guy without knowing his background, then why the heck would you put unknown, foreign ingredients in your body? Instead, go for something that you clearly recognize the ingredients, like Food Should Taste Good chips. Not only are these chips all natural, but they're Kosher, low sodium, Trans fat free, gluten free, and lactose free with no preservatives, cholesterol, or MSG. I especially love the Sweet Potato flavor, that has only six ingredients: Stone Ground Corn, Sunflower Oil, Sweet Potato, Corn Bran, Evaporated Cane Juice and Sea Salt. They taste great alone, dipped in natural peanut butter or dunked in fresh salsa!

Another example of this is all that sugar-free crap. I won’t lie: I used to add sugar substitutes to nearly everything. I’d pour two packets of Splenda into my iced coffees, buy sugar free candy, and even sprinkle packets onto my oatmeal or fruit to sweeten it up. Looking back, I really don’t know what I was thinking. Listen up folks: our bodies aren’t made to process that crap; it’s NOT natural. Now, I use Agave syrup or honey instead, much natural, healthier choices.

Now, forget about packaged foods for a while. The absolute best thing you can do for your body is eat 100% natural, meaning fresh fruits and vegetables, lean unprocessed meats, nuts, oats, whole grains and dairy products without any additives in them. I promise you that if you eat 100% natural most of the time, you’ll be surprised of how amazing your body will look and feel: energized, refreshed and renewed!

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