I’ve known for awhile that high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is bad for you, despite what the corn industry says, but I didn’t know how to explain it. It is hard for me to tell my family why they can’t have certain treats anymore, or to convince my husband to read a label to check for HFCS. Why is it important to chose sugar over HFCS if you are going to consume something with sweetener? Sugar is sugar, right? Wrong!
According to Mercola.com, “(fructose and grains) affect the hormone insulin, which is a very potent fat regulator. Fats and proteins affect insulin to a far lesser degree.” Furthermore, Dr. Mercola says, “research by Dr. Richard Johnson, chief of the Division of Renal Diseases and Hypertension at the University of Colorado and author of The Sugar Fix and The Fat Switch, demonstrates that large portions of food and too little exercise are NOT solely responsible for why you are gaining weight. Rather it’s fructose-containing sugars that cause obesity – not by calories, but by turning on your “fat switch,” a powerful biological adaptation that causes cells to accumulate fat in anticipation of scarcity (or hibernation).”
Not only does HFCS affect insulin, but it is largely produced from genetically modified corn. This corn is created to be “Round Up Ready”, meaning it is genetically built to have pesticide as a part of its DNA. In other words, no amount of vinegar or fruit and veggie cleanser will rinse away the pesticides on GMO produce. It is in its DNA. Gross, not something I want to consume. Further more, if GMO produce isn’t produced for human consumption, it is produced for animal feed. Either way, it ends up in our food supply. The high price of organic grass fed beef doesn’t sound so bad, anymore.
Have you really read your food labels, lately? It is pretty scary. Almost all baby food, from yogurt to the little finger foods, to cereal, to fruit bars all contain HFCS. And, this ingredient is usually one of the top three, meaning it is the biggest ingredient in the product. Food producers have to list their ingredients most to least. If HFCS is the first thing listed, it is what the product is mostly made of.
So I can be a big eater if I just watch my gains and sugars? Yes! And so can my kids. In January I did an experiment. I cut out wheat to see if cutting out the grain would make a difference. I haven’t had any HFCS in months, except when I had some Blue Bell ice cream, and I haven’t had anything artificially flavored in more than four months. I didn’t count calories, but I did limit my processed food consumption. I lost eight pounds doing nothing. This month, I am going to continue, but add sugar to my list of no-nos. Once a week I will eat like poo, but six days a week I will eat only whole foods and limit my grains and sugars. I am excited! I have so much more energy simply from cutting down on my grains and artificial/processed food consumption.
So what pantry items don’t have HFCS? My baby loves graham crackers. But it is hard finding any without going to the super expensive organic food section. I know I should shop there, exclusively, but my budget only goes so far. I found that Nabisco Graham Crackers don’t have HFCS or anything artificial. Please read the labels yourself, because I have missed crucial ingredients, getting distracted by my three year old knocking down displays or the baby having a blow out in the middle of my shopping trip. And, products’ formulas change. But, you have to read labels on even “healthy” foods. For example, so called healthy yogurts for babies are filled with sugars and HFCS. Yikes! Is anything safe? Is there anything you don’t have to slave away and make yourself? Yes, but you do have to read labels. And it is a pain when you are a busy mom or dad.
It is totally worth it, though. Watch your children’s behavior change. Watch attention spans improve. It is not a quick fix. It takes a lot of work preparing foods, reading labels and spending money on a higher quality diet. The hardest part is getting the whole family on board. Older children complain when you don’t allow them to have soda, sports drinks or certain juices made with artificial colors, flavors and HFCS. They will cry when you no longer buy certain chips or let them eat certain fast food. It isn’t fair. Husbands buy what they want, like and what’s on sale. But when you go the whole food route, attitudes get better, grades go up, and dispositions improve. Seriously. That is the magic formula, all natural ingredients. 🙂
My Daily Prayer: Thank you God for second chances. I pray that you continue to walk with me and help me to keep my eyes on You. AMEN!
Daily Thanksgiving: I am thankful for Easton who thinks he spells his name “EON”. I am thankful for Baby Q who barks at my wiener dog slippers. I am thankful for Syd who wishes her family was normal. I am thankful that one day she will see that normal isn’t all that it is cracked up to be.
Kardashian Kash: I would try laser body sculpting just ’cause.
Happiness Project Update: I am working on my stand up routine and pumped to try an open mic night in March. Despite an over the top set back the last few weeks, I am back and back on track.
Making Whoopie Flavor of the Day: All of our products are all natural, with no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives. http://www.makingwhoopieplano.com