A foodie's quest to turn up the heat through strength and conditioning with whole food and a hungry mind.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

ThoughtFOOD News

Today’s post is something I have wanted to incorporate to change it up and stay current on what’s happening in the food world. I plan on having more posts with one or more food related news items that seem interesting.

Councilman Leroy Comrie, a coucilman from Queens, said "Prohibiting fast food restaurants from giving out toys with highly unhealthy meals will reduce the allure of such establishments for children while hopefully incentivizing the fast food industry to provide their customers with healthier and more nutritious options," reports the New York Post.

It's not just Happy Meals that are being targeted: Comrie's bill would prohibit any restaurants from giving out kid-targeted trinkets with meals that have more than 500 calories, 600 milligrams of sodium and 35 percent of calories from fat, excluding nuts, seeds and nut butters.

Think those tiny meals don't pack a caloric punch? Check out the data compiled by Comrie's office: McDonald's Happy Meal contains 1,090 calories, Burger King's Kid's Meal contains 1,460 calories, Wendy's kid's portion meal contains 1,080 calories and KFC's Kid Meal contains 680 calories.
Original post taken from this site.

This article sounds good, but why not ban the unhealthy food served in kid’s meals and leave the toy? Yes, I understand (to a degree) the inner workings of a child’s mind and how this ban will help, but the focus should be on children wanting healthier food. This way kids would associate the healthier food with getting a toy. Now that’s a step in the right direction! Obviously, what is and what should be aren’t always the same, but the mindset is not on the right problem here. Parents are busy, understood, but if you are going to have kids, don’t leave it to fast food for their nourishment. Food prep from store-bought ingredients is not that difficult and is an activity parents can do with their kids.

Let this be motivation to change our fast food ways

Here are some ideas:
• Whole grain cereal measured and put into little baggies or reusable containers. Make it a trail mix with no sugar added dry fruit and dry roasted nuts
• Baby carrots, celery, broccoli, etc in baggies or reusable containers
• Bananas are easy as each one comes with its own transportable package
• Low-fat cheese sticks
• Make natural peanut butter and honey sandwiches – your kids can help
• Assist in cutting up fruit and freezing for a nice treat on a hot day. Papaya and Mango keep pretty soft even after freezing
• Buy some nitrate-free all natural deli meat to serve with whole wheat bread or crackers and some fresh veggies
• Find a healthy dip like hummus or something yogurt based for kids to dip veggies in. Kids seem more apt to eat veggies when they have something to dip them in.
Check out this site for great recipe ideas.

Kellogg's, why did you try to fool us again? Yes, those blueberry bits in cereals and infamously lackluster packaged muffins from the gas station? Not real. Real sugar and food dye; but not berries from the berry bush. We can't say we're surprised, just officially disgusted.

It turns out, some of our biggest industry bakers are only good as colorists. A new video released by the Consumer Wellness Center last week shows that this is actually no secret. As we've seen before, the front of packages always sound better than the back. If you turn over a Frosted Mini Wheats Blueberry Muffin box, touting fresh blueberries on the front, you'll find an ingredients list with an item called "blueberry flavored crunchlets." Crunchlets -- a word we hope never becomes official -- is defined as a mix of sugars, soybean oil, red #40 and blue #2. Voilà, blueberry! Minus, of course, those real-deal elements: antioxidants, manganese, vitamins C and E, and dietary fiber.
You can also expect similar frauds in cereals, breads and muffins from Betty Crocker, Target and General Mills, whose Total Blueberry Pomegranate cereal contains neither blueberry nor pomegranate. Who to trust? A real baker. Or the makers of products like Natures' Path Organic Optimum Blueberry-Cinnamon Breakfast Cereal, which actually contains real blueberries and cinnamon.
Another article from Slashfood (I like this site!), is an issue that’s nothing new or surprising, but seems to delude many people. Of course most of these big companies aren’t using real fruit as they may lead you to believe. That would just cost more, and everyone wants to keep it cheap when it comes to what they put in their body as they play on their new iPhone or Blackberry.

Seriously, if there’s one take-away from this article, please start reading ingredient labels of the food you buy!! It’s surprising what you would expect to be in foods when judging from the picture on the front compared to what’s actually in the food. This has left me questioning anything and everything edible to the point where I only eat what I make most of the time.

Not everyone has the time to make everything for themselves, it takes up all of my Sunday and a few hours of most other days, but there are ways to choose better options. As the article suggests, companies like Nature’s Path, Annie’s Homegrown, Barbara’s Bakery, and Amy’s use real ingredients in their products and they all taste great. Sure, they might cost a little more, but maybe you don’t need that case of beer, or super unlimited texting plan for your smart phone with internet. See where this is going? Don’t go cheap on the food you eat, find other places to pinch your wallet…..your body will thank you!

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