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Monthly Archives: February 2011

Healthy Sweeteners?

We’re all aware that sugar, especially refined sugar, is bad for you. Right? So, what we’ve done is come up with “healthy sweeteners” to substitute our desire for it. We use things like Sweet ‘N Low, Equal, and the latest horrifying craze? Splenda. Let me put to rest any thoughts that Splenda is healthy…umm, it’s not! I know some people who use this all the time thinking they’re being “healthy”. We are deceived! High Fructose Corn Syrup is another one to stay far away from! There are studies that show that this causes fat to build up around your major organs. Ew! No thanks! There are plenty of other problems it can cause, too! Here is just one of many articles on the subject. And do you know that it’s in ALOT of groceries? Just read the labels! One of the number one consumed beverages in America contains it: Coke, Pepsi, most of the major colas. We do our best in our family to read labels and steer clear away from this ingredient. We try to stay away from any sugar, as they all just turn to fat. Not to mention they’re bad for your teeth!

So, are there any truly “healthy sweeteners” out there? Well, of course I’d advise you to stay away from sweeteners as much as possible. I know that is easier said than done (spoken by a true sugar addict with the biggest sweet tooth on the planet)! Our society consumes FAR too much sugar or fructose. On those occasions, though, when you want to add just a little something sweet, there are a few healthy options. Raw honey, Pure maple sugar (PURE, not Aunt Jemima!), and Stevia are good choices. Depending on what it is, you can also add applesauce or some other fruit juice to add some naturally sweet flavor. Agave may be used in limited amounts. Read this for more on agave syrup, and whether or not it’s truly healthy.

Oh, and don’t even get me started on Aspartame! Diet sodas contain this ingredient because it contains fewer calories than sugar, but it is NOT healthy in the least! If given the choice, I’d rather consume just a little bit of something containing sugar in the ingredients than a whole Diet Coke with Aspartame!

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Posted by on February 18, 2011 in Food/recipes, Health

 

Micro-Wave Bye Bye!

Microwaves. One of the conveniences of our day. I remember when I was little and my family got one – kids these days can’t even remember when they didn’t exist! We registered for one when we got married – of course. You really just don’t think about the risks of things like this that are everywhere. You assume that since every home has one (except for those Amish people who don’t use electric) that they are safe…right?

WRONG.

A year or two ago, I came across a couple of articles online about the dangers of microwaves. One was from Mercola (this is only one of his – he has a few others, too) and another was just an article a friend posted on Facebook. If you do some research, you will find several. They talk about how microwaves change the molecular structure of the food heated in them, how it makes the food carcinogenic (cancer-causing), depletes it of most or all nutrients, emits radiation into the air (especially if the seal is not tight around the door) that is simply not good to be exposed to for many reasons…and on and on. Of course many of us hear of the dangers of heating food in plastic containers in the microwave, as well. So, my response to this was to use our microwave as little as possible and only cook in glass – never plastic. I only used the machine to heat up leftovers and such – never to prepare whole meals. Although, I did cook the occasional veggie in there…but that wasn’t but maybe once a week. I also used it for last-minute thawing jobs.

Recently, I was challenged by a couple of friends who do not own microwaves. One told me I should just get rid of it and go cold turkey, and that would force me to use other, safer methods. At first, I just didn’t feel ready for this step. I mean, everyone (okay, almost everyone) we know owns and uses a microwave! I know some people who can’t seem to have a meal without using it for at least one part of the meal! But then again, we are used to being different from everyone else the majority. We already don’t use medicine, go to a chiropractor instead of an M.D., don’t vaccinate, etc. What’s one more thing to make us…weird.

So, we did it! We got rid of the micro-beast! About a week ago I asked my husband if he would even consider it and he said sure! I was surprised! I thought he would fight me on this one! I showed him a few of the articles I had read on the dangers and he said to go ahead and get rid of it – so we did – right away! I’ve got to say that it feels good! It’s been an adjustment this week finding new ways to warm things up, but it’s definitely doable! We may even look into getting a toaster oven to replace the convenience…eventually. Who knew you could live without a microwave??? Shocking, isn’t it? And, I think we will be healthier for it…and probably even save on some energy bills.

 
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Posted by on February 11, 2011 in Food/recipes, Health