SPRING CLEANING FOR YOUR CUPBOARDS
It’s no secret that there are additives in some packaged food and that we shouldn’t be eating high processed foods. This is especially true for children. Spring is a good time to take a look at your cupboards, freezer and fridge to toss away food that is expired. You can also give the heave-ho to food containing dyes, MSG and other ingredients that could be harmful to your health and your children’s health.
READ – FIND – TOSS IT OUT!
Take a look at the food in your cupboards, your fridge and your freezer. It’s time to clean house!
Find the expiration date. If you can’t read the date, and can’t remember when you bought the item, the safest bet is to toss it out. If you have children, many highly processed foods have ingredients or additives that can lead to childhood obesity, attention problems, allergies and a host of other issues.
Foods to avoid for children under 10 include
- Potato chips and French fries which are rich in trans-fat, salt and carcinogenic acrylamides
- Doughnuts which are rich in trans-fat, sugar and other artificial ingredients
- Sausages, hot dogs and luncheon meats which typically contain N-nitroso compounds. The National Institute of Health reports that N-nitroso compounds have been shown to be the most broadly acting and the most potent group of carcinogens.
- Pickled, smoked or barbequed meats which have been linked to stomach cancer and high blood pressure
- Pickles and relishes containing yellow dye #5 or #6 which have been shown as contributing to childhood behavioral problems
- Baby formula containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and milk from cows treated with antibiotics or artificial growth hormones
LOOK IN YOUR CUPBOARDS FOR FOODS WITH
YELLOW DYES #5 AND #6 AND RED DYE #40.
These food dyes have ZERO nutritional value. Why are they added to food? To make the food look prettier. A more vibrant color might enhance the food’s appeal. The reason not to eat (or serve) food with these dyes is because they have been linked to carcinogens, hyperactivity, memory loss, allergies and weight gain. Some of the foods containing food dyes (yellow #5 or #6 and red dye #40) include
- Barbecue sauce
- Catalina salad dressing
- Crescent rolls
- Flavored rice
- Hamburger Helper lasagna
- Ice cream
- Instant pudding
- Nutri-Grain Cereal Bars
- Orange soda
- Yellow cake mix
READ EVERY LABEL
You may be surprised at what you find. There are good alternatives for kids. These are the same foods that are good for a number of other reasons, such as a healthy gut, energy and a healthy weight
If you want to make shop with a clear (un-dyed) conscience, you can go to Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods or Starbucks. These establishments do not carry or sell any food containing a food dye. Hopefully, more food stores will join this list.
- Berries: Berries in morning cereal, topped on yogurt or eaten fresh and raw.
- Greens: Green leafy vegetables, when introduced to children between one and three years of age, can start a lifelong habit and give them the nutrients their growing bodies need.
- Seeds: Yum!! Pumpkins seeds, sunflower seeds, or sesame seeds are all good. They are a super-nutritious wonder food.
- Beans: They contain fiber and nutrients and kids love them.
- Tomatoes: Fresh from the garden or in spaghetti sauce – there is almost no bad way to eat a tomato.