ALL SUGARS AIN’T EQUAL!
The latest bad boy on the block is definitely sugar, (or is it gluten? more on that in a moment). This has culminated with the understanding that when they HAD to take the fat out of everything, it had to be replaced with some other form of flavour, otherwise we would have died from the blandness of food, so the obvious replacement was sugar. The result being that it is now estimated that the average Australian between the ages of 19 and 30 eats 40 teaspoons of sugar every day, this is not surprising as approximately 80% of all supermarket foods contain added sugar, and close to 100% of all takeaway foods.
So how to avoid consuming so much sugar, and which sugars are ok?
Avoiding processed foods is the easiest way to avoid eating added sugar, eat foods that are as close to their natural state as possible. Foods that don’t require a label should make up at least 80% of your food intake (I would go for 90%), namely vegetables, meat, nuts, fruit, and whole grains.
When I do want to whip up a lovely birthday cake or a ‘just because I feel like it’ dessert, I use Rapadura sugar. Rapadura is the pure juice extracted from the sugar cane (using a press), which is then evaporated over low heats, then sieve ground to produce a grainy sugar. It has not been cooked at high heats and spun to change it into crystals, and the molasses has not been separated from the sugar. It is produced organically and does not contain chemicals or anti-caking agents….and it tastes so moreish, you will love it!
This is the one I buy – Rapadura Sugar
ALL OILS AIN’T EQUAL
NB: Fats and oils are the same or similar chemical substances called hydrocarbons. They are organic solvent in nature but not soluble in water.
Man Made Fats are found in items (I refuse to call it food) such as Margarine, and most processed foods such as bread, cakes, and biscuits. Trans-fat, although it can be found naturally occurring in some milk and meats; the primary dietary source is from the partially hydrogenated oils found in most processed foods. Trans-fats have been implicated in cognitive dysfunction, mental health disorders, coronary heart disease, diabetes, abnormal foetal growth rates, and cancer, to name but a few. Recently the FDA took steps to remove artificial trans fat from the food supply in America. This step is expected to reduce coronary heart disease and prevent thousands of fatal heart attacks every year. Now we just need Australia to come to the party! It is important for you to be aware of Vegetable Oils. I am not sure why they are called vegetable oils as they are actually seed oils. The most common are canola oil, soybean, corn, sunflower, safflower, and peanut. Unlike coconut oil or olive oil that can be extracted by pressing, these ‘vegetable’ oils must be extracted in very unnatural ways, and have been shown to be very destructive to your health.
There is so much discussion to be had on this subject as for years we have been subjected to a fear campaign around the consumption of fat. There are many myths and much dogma that needs to be reversed. Please note:
- Fat does not make you fat. Natural Fat is not only good for you, it is essential to health.
- Low-fat products are a marketing scam, avoid them. (When you take the fat out of a food, it tastes yuck, so they add in a load of cheap nasty processed sugar.)
Instead we want to load up on nourishing fat from natural foods such as avocados, nuts, cold pressed oils (olive, coconut, avocado, walnut, macadamia ect.), whole eggs, chia seeds, fatty fish (wild caught, not farmed), coconut, natural full fat yoghurt, and don’t forget dark chocolate! There is one more oil that you may not have heard of, Inca Inchi Oil. Inca Inchi oil is considered the single richest vegetable source of essential fatty acids, including linoleic Omega 6 and alpha-linolenic Omega 3. The human body does not manufacture these fatty acids on its own, however, they are imperative to good health. Inca Inchi oil is also high in antioxidants, including Vitamin A and Vitamin E. The structure of this oil aids in protecting the skin, hair and nails by limiting dehydration while it strengthens and builds up natural defences to common external and dietary exposures. Inca Inchi oil is an excellent ingredient to use in products designed to combat inflammation, irritation, dryness, and damage.
This is the one I buy – Inca Inchi Oil
All Flours Ain’t Equal
There is plenty of awareness and chatter around being gluten free these days and for good reason, the story of wheat really is the story of food, tens of thousands of people are suffering from ill health and don’t realise it’s a result of the food choices they are making. They often assume it is part of their genetic make-up or the fact of just getting older. People need to become educated, knowledgeable, and aware. They need to start making changes to improve the health of their children and future generations. Recently there was a wonderful Australian documentary released on exactly this topic. I will pop a link for you here so you can check it out for yourself. It really is a must watch for anyone who is concerned about the foods they consume or may have any kind of health concerns because wheat can certainly be the issue for many.
The big wigs of the agricultural industry have cottoned on to people’s concerns so have now flooded the market with a plethora of gluten free products …. BEWARE! I strongly advise against buying anything labelled gluten-free! WHY??? Well, because 99.9% of them are simple more highly processed, nutrient devoid, food like products. Instead simply buy real foods that don’t contain wheat, barley, or rye. This is sadly harder than it would seem, however sticking to real whole foods that don’t require labels will make life soooooo much easier for you. If your gut is in great shape and you are not suffering from any chronic illness then you may be fine with occasionally having small amounts of gluten. If this is the case then you should go for an ancient wheat variety such as Emmer Wheat. Emmer Wheat caters for people who can eat gluten and are looking to be able to use an ethical, healthy, organic heirloom wheat in their cooking. This is for the mothers of the next generation to cook bread, cakes and muffins with a main ingredient that has not been compromised and will not compromise the health of their children.
Here is the one I buy – Emmer Wheat
For those looking to buy gluten free flours consider some of the following:
So let’s summarise and simplify!
Avoid foods that are processed, nutrient devoid, chemically ladened, man-altered food like substances, these make your body sick and sad.