What you eat

I treated myself to some fruit slices last week; they were quite delicious! Then I made the mistake of reading the ingredients: corn syrup, sugar, modified food starch (corn), natural and artificial flavors, artificial colors (red 40, yellow 6, yellow 5, red 3, blue 1). Let’s break down this list…it has corn syrup which is sugar, more sugar, a corn derivative, flavors and colors….so where exactly is the fruit?

I can't talk about putting the right things into our bodies without addressing what those things are.

I bought ice cream a few weeks ago - a specific
brand that promises ingredients I can read, you know, milk, sugar, cream, etc.  Upon closer examination, I realized that I had bought a “frozen dairy dessert”. So wait, I bought a dessert that has milk and is kept in a freezer, but it's not ice cream? So what exactly is in it? As the list reads, I had bought a concoction of milk, sugar, more sugar, more milk, cheese by-product, fatty acids, a thickener, another thickener, yet another thickener, natural flavor (what does that mean?), vitamin A, a thickener, and fudge twirl sauce which contains milk, sugar, sugar, cocoa, cheese by-product, cream, a thickener and salt. Not quite what I had in mind when I wanted ice cream! 

There have been several other foods that I've learned have a bit more than I expected. For example, the cheese slices I had come to love after moving to the U.S were actually a "pasteurized prepared cheese product"....so wait, is it cheese or not?

Ahh bread, a staple in most of our homes has quite some ingredients including hydrogenated soybean oil, sodium stearoyl, lactylate, datem, defatted soy flour, extract of malted barley, dextrose, calcium propionate. Goodness, what happened to flour, water, salt and yeast?!   

And don't get me started on peanuts...why does my dry roasted peanuts have sugar, gelatin, torula yeast, cornstarch, dried corn syrup, and maltodextrin?

Our food is slowly morphing into science experiments and projects. And unfortunately this trend is expanding worldwide. I was quite dismayed to see that the fast food, pre-packaged food lifestyle has seeped into the Ghanaian life and is slowly taking over.

We have created a world in which every moment of our day has been filled with something to do. This often means that good food is the last thing on our minds. But we cannot survive and thrive without making the investment of healthy living.

So this week, I challenge you to read more food labels; see what you're actually putting into your body. Show your body love, and make an effort to eat more whole foods...your investment will certainly pay off!  

Happy eating real food!
Half-stepping diva