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Be Kind To Your Body – Read Food Labels

Over the Thanksgiving holidays, my brother Bill came to visit me in Los Angeles.  Like millions of other people, we hit the kitchen to make something to take to our holiday dinner.  I chose to whip up a healthy salad and used one of my favorite salad dressings by Organic Girl called Lemon Agave.

Bill and I started talking about the dressing and how great it tastes.  I explained to him the product has no preservatives.  It is also vegan, gluten free, includes no GMOs and no corn syrup.  It led to us discussing ingredients and how we as consumers rarely read the ingredients on the products we purchase and consume.

When Bill returned to Atlanta, he told me he chose to take a closer look at the salad dressing he buys nearly every week to put on his own salads.  Bill thought he was doing well by purchasing a low fat Italian dressing by a recognizable label, but once he really looked at what was in the ingredients, he called me and said, “I feel stupid that I’ve been eating all these chemicals for years.”  Here’s what he was talking about.

“Bill’s Favorite Fat Free Italian Dressing”

Water, Vinegar, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Corn Syrup,Salt, Contains Less than 2% of Parmesan Cheese (Dried) (Part-Skim Milk, Cheese Culture, Salt, Enzymes), Garlic,Onion Juice, Whey, Phosphoric Acid, Xanthan Gum,Potassium Sorbate and Calcium Disodium EDTA as Preservatives, Yeast Extract, Spice, Red Bell Peppers 

This story is a prime example of what I have been trying to practice for several years now.  I carefully inspect every product I purchase.  As a vegan, I make specific food choices, but even if you are not vegan, you can do the same by looking for ingredient red flags.  One of the main ones is high fructose corn syrup.  It is in more products that you can imagine like creamers, breads, salad dressings, cereals and even ketchup.  Dr. Mark Hyman explains why high fructose corn syrup can be so bad and gives you a kitchen challenge that could save your life.

High frutose syrup is not the only culprit, if you look closely you will also find a thickener in many dressings called Maltodextrin.  It is often used because it is inexpensive and easy to produce. It is even used as a thickener in personal care items such as lotion and hair care products.

I plan to write more about products and what I have discovered on my own path.  Until next time, good luck with cleaning out your cabinets and refrigerator!!!  I would love to hear what you find and what changes you begin to make.  Sending love and light!

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