Tuesday, February 9, 2010

It's Everywhere . .

In my continuing quest and focus on health and fitness, one of the things I have worked to eliminate from my daily fuel is high fructose corn syrup. I've sourced jams that do not have it, and I don't even use fake sugar anymore. I use real sugar if I need or want some in my tea or on my oatmeal from time to time.

I thought I was doing a pretty good job with it. Well, I learned something interesting this morning. And believe me when I tell you that it's not like I don't know that food manufacturer's use other stuff when they make things "light," but it never occurred to me that Miracle Whip Light has HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP in it.

I just happened to look at the label carefully this morning, and there it is. I went on to the Kraft website, which has a pretty good Product Information page, to see what I could find out. Regular old Miracle Whip - the stuff I grew up on, has sugar in it, and of course fat. Well, we knew that, right? :-) The "Light" version has both sugar and HFCS in it. Son of a . . . OK - so one more thing that leaves the kitchen. Thinking I was doing myself a favor by having the light instead of the fat in the real thing . . . I would rather have the real thing and just have less of it, than put more chemicals into my system. I'm the same way about cheese. Just not eating the fake cheese. It's not satisfying and has no functional nutritional value whatsoever.

I'm more and more convinced that eating lower on the food chain is best for me, although it's not always an easy sell . . . I mean, who doesn't like to eat junk from time to time? I confess, I do, and in moderation, just as with everything else, I'm sure it's fine. However, I'm giving it up for Lent.

That's right - I'm giving up junk food for Lent. I'm not Catholic, but for as long as I can remember, I have nearly always giving something up for Lent. I believe it builds character, I guess. And apparently right now, mine needs a boost. Been stuck in a funny place health-wise, and I'm ready to move forward - strength of character is always a good thing :-)

Anyway, I've been eating a lot of junk lately, and it's useless. But I have found it challenging to actually spend time cooking. I don't have a family to feed, so it's easy to fall into lunches out, and take out or popcorn for dinner. (I know, it's embarrassing - and I'm a really good cook . . . which makes it even worse.)

So, we'll talk about this again at Easter. I'll let you know how it goes. And how I feel.

HFCS = The Enemy Wasn't it John Paul Jones who said "I have not yet begun to fight." If I thought I was fighting before, well wait until you see me now.


Knitterary said...

Pretty much anything that comes out of a factory is bad for you. Someday we'll talk about the chemicals in cosmetics and household cleaners, and you'll have a whole new category of enemies to your health.


Linda said...

HFCS is in many manufactured "food-like substances" (to quote Michael Pollan). Now you're getting a better idea of why I'm such a freak about growing, cooking and preserving so much of my own food. I know what's in it, and I only use ingredients that I can pronounce.

Yes, it takes time away from other stuff like knitting, but it's worth it. I cook and freeze lots of stuff for lunches and quick dinners: soups, stews, etc. In the summer, it's even easier since I can pick something from the garden and just have that for dinner.

Look at Mark Bittman's new book, Food Matters, for more info on better eating habits (better for you and the planet, that is) and some great, easy recipes for breakfasts, lunches, and dinners.

Last night I cooked some venison chops (a gift from Dad the hunter). I first slowly cooked some onions until they were mostly carmelized and then added the chops with beef broth and shitake mushrooms. I used BUTTER to cook the onions. Yeah, it's supposed to be soooo bad for you, but it's been around for ages and ages and ages and people know how to metabolize stuff like butter. Not so with hydrogenated vegetable oils, which are fairly new. (That should be your next "get it away from my lips" thing.) I could have used olive oil instead of butter, but a bit o' butter will not make you fat or kill you; it satiates and makes you desire less food...or ate least it does me.

Real food is good food. Good food is satisfying food. And I'm less likely to eat too much if I'm eating stuff that satisfies my body's cravings (which does include of bit of fat each day.)

OK, I'm off my soapbox now.

candy t said...

HFCS and Trans Fat! I had to eliminate every trace of trans fat from my diet because I can't tolerate cholesterol meds. Don't know if it's working yet...