Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Thoughts on the Health Food Section

It dawned on me a while back when I was in the grocery store.  I wanted some nuts and I didn't want them covered in salt and weird flavorings and preservatives - just some plain, raw, organic nuts, please.  I asked an employee where I could find them and he directed me to the health food section.  The area that he pointed me toward was small - it was one half of an aisle among many - and it was essentially hidden in the middle of the store.  I thought to myself, 'this is the health food section and they don't even have my plain, raw, organic nuts here?'  Wait a second.  If this is the health food section....  THEN WHAT IS EVERYTHING ELSE IN THE STORE?!  

There are not only health food sections in conventional grocery stores - there are entire health food stores, whose very existence infers that the ratio of unhealthy to healthy foods in the conventional grocery stores necessitates a whole different breed of store!  What is ironic is that by adopting the term "health food section", these stores are admitting to the fact that the rest of the store is the crap food section and actually marketing that fact to you on their own property. 

There are reasons they call it the health food section: 

1. There are fewer artificial chemicals, colorings, and preservatives in that aisle.
2. There's less corn in that aisle (corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, maltodextrin, dextrose, etc.).  Check out this video about the abundance of corn that is hidden in our diet.

3. There's probably not any toxic, hydrogenated fat in the health food aisle.
4. There are whole-grain breads and flours and sweet treats with not-so-refined sugars in them, and there are organic choices so that you're not forced to eat genetically modified (GMO) foods.
5. There's definitely not going to be fake sugar over there.

Essentially, the products in this section are not going to be primarily made up of corn, sugar, corn sugar, overly processed dairy, fake colorings, preservatives, and depleted grains like many of the products in all of the other aisles.

This post is a request from me to you to check out your local grocery store's health food section.  Or better yet, to buy your food from a health food store, instead.  It's an urgent but gentle plea to look closely at the ingredients in your food to see how many of them you recognize.  If you don't recognize them, get the book, A Consumer's Dictionary of Food Additives, to find out what the ingredients are and what they're doing to your body.  

Until next time.

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