Why I’m Never Spending Another Dime On This Holiday Gift!

As I was online holiday shopping, I came across several “edible” gifts that made my head want to explode. These are gifts that I now refuse to buy or eat for that matter. There’s no way that I’m going to send unhealthy, disease-promoting gifts to people that I care about. There’s nothing that I value more than my health and the health of my friends and family. After seeing all the advertisements and mall kiosks for this junk, I knew I had to write about these so called “gifts.”

Now, please don’t call me a scrooge or yell “ba humbug” at me for sharing this info…I’m only the messenger!

Holiday Gifts That I’m NEVER Buying (…again)

I’m embarrassed to say that several years ago I used to buy gift baskets from Mrs. Fields Cookies for some special occasions and as holiday gifts. My college girlfriends even would send me them during hard times like when I had a romantic breakup or before exams. As much as I love cookies, once I found out the truth I never spent another dime on their products. I got the complete list of ingredients in their holiday gift baskets and let me tell you, they are filled with ingredients that let’s just say, Santa would call really naughty!

Mrs. Fields Holiday Gift Baskets make the NAUGHTY LIST! 

  • Partially Hydrogenated Oils – Mrs. Fields uses margarine and partially hydrogenated oils as a substitute for real butter in their cookies. While their cookies contain some butter, partially hydrogenated oils take a front seat as one of their main ingredients. These oils are the primary source of artificial trans fat in our diet, which have been shown to increase “bad” cholesterol and decrease “good” cholesterol, leading to heart disease. As reported in Scientific American, “It took decades for scientists to realize how deadly trans fats could be, partly because the food industry and the cardiovascular prevention community dismissed concerns over adverse effects on health, but the evidence continued to mount”. Finally in 2013, the FDA tentatively determined that partially hydrogenated oils are no longer GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe) due to these health concerns, so no one should be eating these oils – even during the holidays!
  • Mono & Diglycerides - This is another (somewhat sneaky) source of harmful trans fat.
  • Soybean Oil – This oil is heavily processed and almost always extracted with the neurotoxin hexane, a cheap byproduct from gasoline production. It’s also high in omega-6 fatty acids (which the American diet is too full of) increasing the risk of inflammation, cardiovascular disease, cancer, and autoimmune diseases.
  • High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) – Your body doesn’t process HFCS the same as regular sugar (sucrose), and excessive high fructose corn syrup consumption has been shown to increase the risk of developing diabetes.
  • Enriched Bleached Flour – This is the worst type of flour because it’s been stripped of fiber and nutrients, and comes from a heavily hybridized wheat crop, which may have been pre-harvested with Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide.
  • Parabens – Mrs. Fields cut-out frosted holiday cookies include methylparaben and propylparaben as ingredients. You may have heard about these ingredients in cosmetics, shampoo and lotions, but not realize they are in food too. Parabens have been found to be endocrine-disrupting chemicals that are linked to breast cancer (sources: 1234), and reproductive problems. This ingredient made the EWG’s top 12 dirty dozen food additives - which means it’s one of the worst food additives in existence!
  • Genetically Modified Ingredients? – Several of the ingredients used by Mrs. Fields typically come from genetically modified (GMO) crops. When we called Mrs. Fields customer service and asked whether they use any GMO ingredients, the agent did not seem to understand what we were asking. They have not responded to email requests. I will update you here when (and if) they respond. These ingredients are often derived from GMOs and can be found in Mrs. Fields holiday gifts: Sugar, Corn Syrup, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Soybean Oil, Mono & Diglycerides, Soy Lecithin, Citric Acid, Cornstarch, Canola Oil, Fructose, Xanthan Gum, Cottonseed Oil, Glycerin, Food Starch.

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You Won’t Believe What’s In Your Yogurt – And It’s Not On The Label!

The food industry has a reputation of taking incredibly healthy items and turning them into processed junk food and this is exactly what has happened to most yogurts available on the market. The Cornucopia Institute just came out with a very revealing report (an investigation that took 2 years!) about what’s in yogurt, and how giant food corporations, led by General Mills (Yoplait), Groupe Danone (Dannon), Walmart, and PepsiCo are saturating the market with less nutritious yogurt. Conventional yogurt usually comes from milk produced by cows that are confined and unable to graze in open pasture. They’re usually fed GMO grains, not grass. As the yogurt ferments, chemical defoamers are sometimes added. Then high doses of artificial sweeteners, sugar, or high fructose corn syrup are sometimes added too. That’s not all: colors, preservatives, and gut-harmful carrageenan can be dumped in. These practices alarm me, since yogurt has been such a healthy, longevity-promoting food for ages. 

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Just Because This Kraft Food Is “EASY” Doesn’t Mean You Should Eat It!

I was walking in a huge warehouse store recently and I saw this box of Kraft “Easy” Mac & Cheese madness and just had to write about it. I forgot how disgusting this list of ingredients was, it’s a shame that stores are even allowed to carry this garbage.

The ingredient list on a little cup of Kraft’s “Easy” Mac & Cheese is a long one, and to think that so many kids around the nation are popping these suckers into microwaves is so sad. Please inform your friends and family – Just because it’s “easy” doesn’t mean that you should eat it. 

Let’s begin with the 22 ingredient cheese sauce… Yes 22!

Doesn’t it really just take cheese and a bit of butter and milk to make a cheese sauce?  Not if it’s Kraft’s recipe. This is the craziest ingredient list for cheese sauce that I’ve ever seen:  

“Easy” Mac Cheese Sauce Mix: Whey, Maltodextrin, Corn Syrup Solids, Palm Oil, Modified Food Starch, Milkfat, Salt, Milk Protein Concentrate, Medium Chain Triglyceride, Sodium Tripolyphosphate, Citric Acid, Sodium Phosphate, Natural Flavor, Lactic Acid, Calcium Phosphate, Guar Gum, Monosodium Glutamate, Yellow 5, Yellow 6, Artificial Flavor, Cheese Culture, Enzymes.

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The Book The Food Industry Doesn’t Want You To Read: The Food Babe Way

I have a very exciting announcement to make today.

I can finally tell you about the mysterious book I’ve been writing! You might have seen the press mention it once or twice, but I have kept all the juicy details secret from everyone until now because I wanted to share it with you first!

How it all started…

It was March of 2009, I had just turned 30 and accepted a job offer that scared me to death. I invited over a few close friends for dinner and we were discussing this new job opportunity. I had a light travel schedule with mostly in-town assignments for my business-consulting career (this is what I did before I became a full time activist). And now I was going to take a job that required 100% travel – that meant traveling every single week on the road to and from a city I had never been to before.

Things were good at home, my health was never better. My skin was glowing. All my clothes fit. My prescription drugs slowly expired and were relegated to the back of the bathroom cabinet. I felt so good. My workout routine and healthy habits were consistent and working to keep me at my ideal weight without dieting! But now I was about to disrupt my little perfect life and go on the road, eating God knows what, living out of a suitcase with no kitchen and no regular schedule!

All I could think about was the struggles I had when my job took me on the road when I was in my early twenties where I became overweight, lost control of my food and was in terrible shape. I looked and felt really bad – My face was swollen, my eyes were sunken in, and I was in desperate need of a change. 

Now fast forward back to this dinner in March of 2009.

I said to my friends that night – boldly (but feeling very very worried) – I’m going to do it. I am going to take this job and still live organically, even on the road, and one day I am going to write a book about it.

This was the first thought I ever had about writing a book. 

Looking back. I can’t believe how far my little discussion with friends has taken me.

Introducing The Food Babe Way….

The Food Babe Way: Break Free from the Hidden Toxins in Your Food and Lose Weight, Look Years Younger, and Get Healthy in Just 21 Days!

In Stores Everywhere, February 10, 2015

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