Nutrition labels are required on everything, and I do mean everything. Have you ever read them?? I think people are used to looking at the calories and fat grams, maybe even the cholesterol of certain foods, but what about the ingredients list?? Ever read those??
The Whole 30 that I am in the middle of forces you to read the ingredients of everything. One of the rules is no sugar (other than the natural sugars found in fruit) and that rule, for me, is probably the hardest.Yesterday I was at the grocery store and I needed tomato sauce for a cabbage casserole that I am making. I looked at the organic can of sauce and this is what I saw:
Why in the world do they add sugar to tomato sauce???? I assume it’s because sugar makes things taste better and that’s what the food manufacturers want, but who the hell knows. Not only is sugar in almost everything, there are also things that you can’t even pronounce. And if you can pronounce them, you most likely have no idea what the hell they are!!!
Another example is coconut milk. Whole 30 rules say no dairy, so no using half and half in my coffee. Coconut milk is a good substitute. So in my search for coconut milk I went to Whole Foods. Surely there would not be anything added to the Whole Foods brand of coconut milk. WRONG, here is the ingredients list:
What the hell is Guar Gum?? Well according to Wikipedia “Guar gum, also called guaran, is a galactomannan. It is primarily the ground endosperm of guar beans. The guar seeds are dehusked, milled and screened to obtain the guar gum. It is typically produced as a free-flowing, off-white powder.” I don’t know about you, but that doesn’t really explain it to me. It’s an additive that most likely helps preserve the coconut milk, but still, it’s not natural.
My Whole 30 has numerous purposes, one of them is to know what you are putting into your body. Reading labels is a huge part of it, how else will you know what is going into your body. It also makes you realize how much food manufacturers add to our foods. It really is mind boggling. I bet if you went to your pantry and just grabbed a can or jar of anything, there would be at least one ingredient that would make you ask yourself “why is that in there”? It just does not make sense.
Reading labels is important for a multitude of reasons, knowing what’s going into your body is just one of them. I hope in the future food manufactures will take out the additives and just make things made of real food. It’s far fetched, but I can hope.