RANT: Labels and Ingredients

The first few ingredients listed on a package label represents what the food primarily consists of, subsequent ingredients are found in decreasingly smaller amounts.  For example, potato chips’ first ingredient should be potatoes, then some kind of oil and then some salt.  Start to look at labels and notice what the first three ingredients are (of course make sure there aren’t any chemicals later in the list either).2012-08-16 14.13.36
I challenge you to find foods in boxes bags and packages that sugar is not one of the first 3 ingredients.  And I challenge you NOT TO BUY the ones that do!
Bars, our generation’s cereal, are often loaded with sugar.  Check the label. Many have more grams than a piece of cake! Even Nature’s Valley granola bars’ 2nd ingredient is sugar, and most other bars, like Nutrigrain, Quakers and Special K are made primarily of high fructose corn syrup.  You know, the stuff that causes obesity and diabetes!?! You are consuming a hefty dose sugar when you eat these ostensibly healthy foods.
Same goes for dining out.  If you have anything tangy or glazed (think glazed fish or steak or chinese food, japanese steak house and most american food) that glaze is made with a syrup, sugar or high fructose corn syrup.
Try an experiment.  For three days look at the labels, know the ingredients of everything you eat.
Sometimes frozen berries are just frozen berries; but if you are not paying attention, you’ll buy frozen berries and sugar, or frozen berries and corn syrup.
Check the tortilla ingredients list; though some tout “healthy whole wheat”, it’s usually “enriched whole wheat” (which means the good stuff has been stripped off and then some version of it put back in) and worse, they usually have multiple preservatives and lard to make them crispy with heat)
So, don’t be fooled, Be smart about what your consuming.  Eat. Real. Food.

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Madeleine Vanstory attended Duke University and began her post-graduate journey at The Elaine Clark Center working with special needs children. She went on to work as a Clinical Research Scientist running clinical trials for the CDC and developing medical devices for Welsh Allen, Abbot Labs, Roche and Johnson & Jonhson Her work included non-invansive cervical cancer detection, continuous diabetic glucose monitoring, non-harmful infant bilirubin level detection and studying Vitamin C's anti-aging effects on the skin. Madeleine attended Medical school at The Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University and completed a residency in Family Medicine at Moses Cone Hospital in Greensboro NC. Dr. Madeleine Vanstory is a board certified Family Physician who has practiced all over the world. She has lead medical missions in Kenya and Honduras. She has participated with Operation Smile in Russia, she has patients in North Carolina, Maine, Oregon and New Zealand. Dr. Vanstory has worked the medical tents in the Marine Corps marathon in Washington DC and at the Kona Ironman World Championships. And Dr. Vanstory has marched with the Surgeon General promoting "Exercise is Medicine" at the World Congress Sports Medicine Conference. Disillusioned by the current health care system and armed with the realization that culture, nutrition and emotional well-being have a profound impact on health, Dr. Vanstory now motivates clients and patients to discover the healthiest versions of themselves through humor, counseling in her "Upgrade Your Health" Wellness Program.

8 thoughts on “RANT: Labels and Ingredients

  1. Some “health food” manufacturers know that their customers will look at the first few ingredients on the list and have changed their ingredients in such a way as to deceive those who don’t read the entire list. Example: Since they don’t want “sugar” to show up in the first few ingredients they use a combination of honey, sugar, brown rice syrup and/or corn syrup — the product still has a high sugar content, but because they used several different forms of sugar the word “sugar” doesn’t appear at the top of the list — you have to add up all of the different types of sugar to get better picture of what you are buying. (I hope this comment made sense)

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